Sunday Garden Chat: Scotch Bonnets

carbon dated window pots 1

From commentor Carbon Dated:

A couple years ago I contributed to the garden chat from our East Village place…. We have since moved west. FAR FAR west, to 10th avenue. And north, to Hell’s Kitchen. And UP, to the 21st floor. So, the garden is limited to the potted plants I can fit next to the windows, which both face east.

These are mostly scotch bonnet plants. The one on the right is almost ripe (they turn brilliant yellow). The pot on the left is a repository of all the weeds I plucked from the pots. Ridiculous, I know, but I cannot kill anything, even weeds. They look kinda cool, I think.

carbon dated window pots 2

These are on the floor. I’ve picked four peppers so far — they are spiiiiiiicey. (A quick recipe: make three deviled eggs. Saute a thinly sliced scotch bonnet [with seeds!] in olive oil until soft. Drizzle all over eggs.] You can’t tell from these pics, but there are dozens of flowers and pea-sized little fellas that might mature and ripen. I live in hope. Empire State Building in the distance.

carbon dated window pots 3

The other edibles: on the left, a mini basil plant. These, from seeds, have been going strong for a year. Flavor is amazing. In the middle, oregano, also from seeds. It looks pathetic because a recent cat-sitter let it cook in the sun and almost die of thirst. Not a terrible loss as the flavor is a bit vapid anyway (and he did keep Clea alive, so there’s that).

One advantage to an inside garden: no need for pesticides, natural or otherwise. But sadly, no poppies this year.

carbon dated clea

Clea (nee C-Word) has adjusted nicely to her indoor existence.

*************

What’s going on in your gardens this week?






55 replies
  1. 1
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    What wonderful plants, and what a stunning view you have! Clea is lovely. Does she try to nibble any of the greens?

  2. 2
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Scotch bonnets, eh? I’ll have to give them a try. Yeah, that is quite a view. I think I prefer mine… And the less stressful housing payment and the less stressful life style…. ;-) NYC, while I would like to go there for a long wkend, one has to be made of stouter stuff than I for any more than that.

    Still picking the last of my mournful tomatoes at the rate of 1 or 2 every few days. Beans are all but done, but the peppers are still producing well. The brussell sprouts are looking good. My squash have now swelled to 1 Zuch, 1 yellow, and 1 patty pan. WOO HOO!!

    Have given up on planting a fall garden. Between work and the heat these last few weeks, I just haven’t had the energy, or the body. 55 is just too old for this sh!t. By the end of the day I feel like I have been beaten with a baseball bat. Fortunately, the kid I’m working with has been able to pick up the slack.

    So anyway, for the fall I am just going to prep the garden for a nice quiet winter: Clean it up, put in a nice 4 inch layer of compost, plant some red clover, and let it (and me) rest.

  3. 3
    NotMax says:

    Is that the Port Authority Bus Terminal to the right?

  4. 4
    raven says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Scotch Bonnet are habaneros, use with caution! Sweet garden and kitty.

  5. 5
    Linda Featheringill says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    My squash didn’t do very well, either.I dunno what was needed that I didn’t provide.

    Squash blossoms are lovely, though, aren’t they?

    I have store-bought tomato plants and raised-from-seed plants. The professionally started tomatoes had a lackluster year but the home grown seedlings have been very hardy. And still producing lots of green tomatoes.

    As for a fall garden, I made a small bed for winter cabbage and ordered plants from Burpee but they haven’t been shipped yet. I’ve never grown cabbage and I’m looking forward to a new adventure.

  6. 6
    Geoduck says:

    I tried growing pumpkins this year; the vines overran the yard, but I’m only going to get a handful of actual fruit. Still, considering I had no idea what I was doing when I started, if I end up with one usable jack o’ lantern, I’ll be fairly happy. Have to read up more on the subject next year.

  7. 7
    JPL says:

    The pictures are lovely, weeds and all. I still have a lot of green tomatoes. The squirrels decimated the cherry tomatoes and the green zebra. They turned their noses up to the plum tomatoes, though. My sweet potatoes are not that large, how long can I let them go?

  8. 8
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @raven:

    Scotch Bonnet are habaneros, use with caution!

    Ooooopps! I like warm peppers, not HOT peppers. Thanx for the warning.

  9. 9
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Linda Featheringill:

    My squash didn’t do very well, either.I dunno what was needed that I didn’t provide.

    I am blaming the unusually cool summer. The last 3 weeks were the first time we have been north of 95, and most of the time our highs were in the upper 80s.

  10. 10
    JPL says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Do you know how long I can keep the sweet potatoes in my raised garden? There seems to be a lot of them just not very big yet. (3″ x 1″)

    also, too.. I live in GA and the summer was unusually cool and wet.

  11. 11
    JPL says:

    By the magic of google, I just found all the information that I needed to cure the sweet potatoes. They can stay in the box until the first frost.

  12. 12
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @JPL:

    They can stay in the box until the first frost.

    Beat me to it.

  13. 13
    Botsplainer says:

    Now that I’m older, I tend to find scotch bonnets inedible.

    True story – I once found out the hard way about scotch bonnets by mincing up a couple without gloves, and touching my face to push up my glasses.

  14. 14
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    According to the Guardian, Jack Nicholson is hanging up his spurs.

    “The Nicholson trademark is a sage, slow-dawning, disreputable smile: he’s the cat that got the cream but knows there’s more to come. Peeling back his lips to reveal a widescreen grin of carnivorous teeth, he is at heart matey and conspiratorial. No wonder that to so many people who have never even met him, he is “Jack” rather than “Nicholson”.

  15. 15
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Botsplainer:

    True story – I once found out the hard way about scotch bonnets by mincing up a couple without gloves, and touching my face to push up my glasses.

    Ouch. Last year when I was grinding up my cayennes, I thoughtlessly rubbed an eye.

  16. 16
    MikeJ says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Sadly, Nicholson’s doesn’t look like a giant robot or some sort of funny book underwear pervert, so I can’t see Hollywood making a movie that would need somebody of his calibre,

  17. 17
    geg6 says:

    @MikeJ:

    Ain’t that the truth! So few movies made anymore that I have a desire to see. I hate superheroes and “scary” movies. So tedious, every one of them. Watched Argo last night on HBO, just thrilled to see a film that is meant for adults. Not the best film ever made, but good. The last one I saw that made me happy like that was The Descendants.

  18. 18
  19. 19
    MikeJ says:

    @weaselone: That’s not what that article says.

  20. 20
    geg6 says:

    @weaselone:

    Um, can you actually read? And again I must ask, is anyone at all surprised about this? Did you actually think that any communication device that has electronic data was actually secure? Were you born yesterday?

  21. 21
    Botsplainer says:

    @geg6:

    Ain’t that the truth! So few movies made anymore that I have a desire to see. I hate superheroes and “scary” movies. So tedious, every one of them. Watched Argo last night on HBO, just thrilled to see a film that is meant for adults. Not the best film ever made, but good. The last one I saw that made me happy like that was The Descendants.

    I’m watching 48 Hours for the first time since I originally saw it. It has everything – San Francisco as a scary, murder-filled hellhole, the Angry Black Captain, the psychotic thief on a rampage, wisecracking grizzled cop, brainless naked girls…

  22. 22
    Brother Shotgun of Sweet Reason says:

    Second year without a lot of luck with tomatoes, except for Romas. The others get almost ripe then something gets to them, either fungus or bugs. So I took my 3 quarts of Romas and used the Joy of Cooking recipe for tomato paste this weekend.

    All that work and all those tomatoes will only get me a couple of tablespoons!

  23. 23
    weaselone says:

    @MikeJ:

    Fine. The NSA has the capability to gain access to the user data on smart phones, but appears to have only done so in a targeted manner, not en mass.

    My original statement is essentially what a front pager will post using a few hundred words sometime later today.

  24. 24
    weaselone says:

    @geg6:

    The comment was not intended to be a factual statement.

  25. 25
    fuckwit says:

    @weaselone: Must. Yawn. Again.

    I’m so jaded from being in IT for the last 25 years now. Apple already knows everything about you. Google already knows everything about you. Facebook knows so much about you it’s ridiculous. Your carrier and your ISP already know everything about you, and so do your credit card issuer, TRW, and Equifax. Much, if not all, of the data on your smartphone is accessible either to Apple/Google/MSFT, your carrier, or both, and also to any haxx0r who compromises it.

    So what’s different? What’s news about this? That the NSA has access to that data too? Law enforcment has always had access to all of the above with a subpoena/warrant. Now they have access without one? Well just change the laws regulating what kind of warrants they neeed and when, and with what oversight, and that problem is solved, no need for a fucking freakout.

  26. 26
    Botsplainer says:

    @weaselone:

    Fine. The NSA has the capability to gain access to the user data on smart phones, but appears to have only done so in a targeted manner, not en mass.

    Griftwald is promising another floppy release for tonight about how Obama is History’s Greatest Monster. It will inevitably cause emoprog freakouts, and after about 2 minutes of examination, the facts and conclusions will completely fall apart. The Guardian, being the lying propagandist’s shill by necessity (they hired the incompetent, so they have to see it through), will wait at least 24-48 hours until correction, so as to maximize the effect of the lies of Griftwald.

  27. 27
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Botsplainer:

    It has everything – San Francisco as a scary, murder-filled hellhole, the Angry Black Captain, the psychotic thief on a rampage, wisecracking grizzled cop, brainless naked girls…

    For some reason, all I can see is Dirty Harry, except for the Angry Black Captain,wisecracking grizzled cop, and brainless naked girls…

  28. 28
    WereBear says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Some people love movies where very little happens; character studies, slice of life, that kind of thing.

    I don’t. So I like action movies, where you have to have a plot. Now, I’m as bored as anyone with a bad action movie, but when it’s good, it’s one thing the US does right.

  29. 29
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @fuckwit:

    Must. Yawn. Again.

    I have to admit that I too am very tired of this conversation. If every time the subject came up I made another donation to the ACLU, either they would be fully funded thru 2053, or I’d be broke. I take that back.

    I’d be broke in less than a week.

  30. 30
    NotMax says:

    @WereBear

    action movies, where you have to have a plot

    Now that’s comedy.

  31. 31
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @WereBear:

    Some people love movies where very little happens; character studies, slice of life, that kind of thing.

    I don’t. So I like action movies,

    What I like are movies that entertain me. I don’t care about genre so much as does it capture my interest and hold it captive till the end? I am especially fond of movies that mix the genres together like Snatch, Pulp Fiction, the Fifth Element.

    He will never win an Academy Award but any Jackie Chan works for me plain and simply because he entertains me.

  32. 32
    WereBear says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I don’t care about genre so much as does it capture my interest and hold it captive till the end?

    Yes, and I like mixed genre too, because that’s a great way to keep the audience guessing.

    I can watch drama, but it has to be really good, or it’s boring. All About Eve is a classic example; I’ve watched it a dozen times, and never get tired of it.

  33. 33
    MomSense says:

    The plan was to weed the garden this morning but I got a late start and it is raining so I’m going to just putter around the house and try and catch up with the laundry.

    Parenting kids when there is a big age span is a trip. Made masks with my youngest with lots of glue and glitter and crafty things. My oldest was out with his girlfriend and he told me he was staying at her place. My middle son was looking very dapper before he left to meet some friends at a hookah club. He was so dapper that I asked him if there were women involved and he said “I hope”.

    Of course I couldn’t sleep until he was back, which was so late it was early, so there will be lots of coffee this morning.

  34. 34
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @WereBear:

    All About Eve is a classic example; I’ve watched it a dozen times, and never get tired of it.

    I’ll have to give it a try.

  35. 35
    YellowJournalism says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Even “The Spy Next Door” entertained you?

  36. 36
    lamh36 says:

    Ugh i know ive said i was too through with this mess but i read this on twitter and just has to laugh. Its all nothing but a bs game. Cries of Obama should ask Congress and as usual this:

    “@meetthepress: Fmr. Rep. Jane Harman on reluctance for #Syria action in Congress: “They want it to pass, they just don’t want to vote for it.” #MTP”

    And yet the Obama admin is the one being pegged as disingenuous,

  37. 37
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @YellowJournalism: Yep. But then I am easy that way.

  38. 38
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Time to go. Vaya con FSM.

  39. 39
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @NotMax: It might be more framework than developed structure, there’s better than even odds it’s poorly executed, but at least something has to happen.

    I was stuck on a plane with a broken laptop and The Royal Tenenbaums the only distraction, and I got lost pretty early. People call the movie summary a “plot”, but I sure couldn’t find one. Looked like people wandering through life to me.

    Daily soap operas can get away with that because they’re stretching the plot out over multiple weeks. Novels have theoretically limitless pages for side trips. A movie is, at best, a novella. 120 pages isn’t a lot. It has to be focused.

    Give me Freytag’s pyramid. Give me a monomyth. Convince me that there’s some reason I should watch your expensive movie instead of Y&R.

  40. 40
    p.a. says:

    I’ve heard that if you use this year’s seeds for next year’s plants the peppers get hotter each generation. Doubt this is desirable with Scotch Bonnets, but for other types… I’ve found jalapeños to be very inconsistent, whether home grown, market, or in restaurants. Doesn’t depend on ‘seedage’ either. Sometimes hot, sometimes heatless and grassy tasting- not in a good way either. I have 4 hot cherry pepper plants. Got 1 from each, great heat, even just the flesh. But they are setting like crazy now! Don’t know if any will be ready by the time the season ends here in S. New England.
    Food but not veggie topic: just had my first chicharron. Oh my god. I’m going straight to hell it’s sooo good. My cardiologist will have a spring in his step today without knowing why.

  41. 41
    MikeJ says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism: Explosions shouldn’t be a substitute for plot. Seeing shit on fire just isn’t entertaining. And frankly that mad libs book everybody uses now (the cat thing) makes all the splody movies even more indistinguishable than they already were.

  42. 42
    geg6 says:

    @WereBear:

    Huh? Action movies have a plot? Well, I guess you’re right in that they all have the same plot: misunderstood manly man hero has enemies, usually some nefarious “other”, shoots huge guns and goes all Kung fu master on said others, lots of explosions and ordinance wreak mysteriously bloodless havoc and misunderstood manly man ends film as epitome of the awesomeness of Merka!

    Kill me now.

  43. 43
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @MikeJ: There’s a lot of wiggle room within the pyramid or the monomyth structure. Just because the movie executives are idiots doesn’t mean it’s a bad structure.

    The most important thing is that both structures require a beginning or a catalyst event, tension building middle, and resolution. Specifics can be all over the place. I found P.S. I Love You to be pretty damned tedious, but at least it tried to have a basic plot structure in place. It just fell on its face in the middle, largely I think because most of the characters were so colorless. The person who inflicted that movie on me thought the “twist” at the end was worth it; I was too bored by then to consider it more than a curiosity.

    BTW, I’m pretty sure that if I put out a little effort, I could show it to be a classic monomyth.

    There is a four-door concept of reader preferences that I read years ago and haven’t been able to find since. Roughly, there are four aspects to storytelling, and every reader ranks them differently. I need both plot and character before I can consider a story to possibly be “good”. A lot of classic SF is all plot and no character. I’ve lost what the other two were; I think style was one of them. But I do clearly remember there being four doors into the reader’s mind.

  44. 44
    carbon dated says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Incredibly, Clea doesn’t mess with the plants. (Although once after she hurled on my rug she did have a nibble at the pot of weeds…)

  45. 45
    carbon dated says:

    @NotMax: No, the view toward ESB is 37th street (Port Authority is @ 40th). To the right and in front of the ESB you might be able to make out the Moonie-owned New Yorker hotel.

  46. 46
    geg6 says:

    Just finished reading the Sunday papers and discovered a wonderful treasure nearby that we did not know about. Seems a great hiking trail that spans seven states has a large section close by. The Great Northern Trail goes through sections of Lawrence and Beaver Counties here in PA. Very close to where we live (we live in southern Beaver County and the trail goes through the northern part). We’ve spent some lovely days on the Ohio River Trail, so we are now furiously planning a hike through the Beaver County portion of the GNT, hopefully next weekend, weather permitting. Very excited!

  47. 47
    carbon dated says:

    @p.a.: I’ve heard that if you use this year’s seeds for next year’s plants the peppers get hotter each generation.

    I’ve never heard that. Seems too simple somehow …

    Southern New England you say? Some of my plants ended up in Rhode Island — I’d germinated more than my humble apartment could house, so I gave away a bunch when they were old enough to endure a train ride.

  48. 48
    ruemara says:

    @weaselone: Dammit if you aren’t correct.

    People, of course Scotch Bonnets are super spicy. They’re everywhere in Jamaican stews and soups. Spicy is mandatory.

  49. 49
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @geg6: That’s a pretty narrow definition of an action movie. Call it a “Steven Seagall movie”, and I’ll agree with you.

    I don’t think Jet Li’s Hero fits in there, though. Might be able to shoehorn War into it. Fifth Element, likewise. Princess Bride, Blues Brothers, no.

    If you shove Iron Man into that box, you’re missing a lot of the story,, starting with the real villain of the piece. I can’t manage to twist Thor into that, either. X-Men: First Class doesn’t fit.

    Pacific Rim does fit pretty well, but it also has multiple character arcs within the invasion story, so I’d call it a well-done example.

    Outta time. Mekishiko-ryoori suki desu.

  50. 50
    SectionH says:

    Our lawn sprinklers didn’t run the whole time we were at the Worldcon/in transit, so Mr S got back to a crispy brown mess. We think it will mostly recover, but wow. We lost a monkey flower and nearly lost the lambs ears all of which are partly dependent on lawn water. And, sadly, most of the nasturtiums. But considering some of the garden disasters we’ve returned to after Worldcon trips, this wasn’t too bad.

    (Yes, we’d be mostly or entirely rid of lawn if we were staying here, but we’re not, and we’re not about to spend a bunch more money on speculative landscaping. So we do need to keep the lawn alive and in decent shape for the next few months.)

    Tomatoes: the Stupice is still producing copiously, and we have some more Brandywines, San Marzanos, and maybe a few Mortgage Busters to pick soon. We harvested some more eggplant when we got home, a proto-canteloupe (and more of them, bigger ones, are ripening), there’s a huge new crop of habaneros and Fresno pimientos, and a few of the very nice orange Sweet peppers. The raspberries we planted in July have a few more berries coming along. Some of the Borage That Ate San Diego has seeded itself in their container, so we need to get that out (I’d like to save the plants if I can, but not at the expense of the raspberries). The chocolate mint is taking over (no surprise there, really but I did think our climate might slow it down a bit. Ha.)

    And so on. Going to try to get a walk in before it gets too hot to move outside. We’ve seen reports of thunderstorms nearby, but not a drop here. At least it’s supposed to cool off in a couple of days.

  51. 51
    WereBear says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism: @geg6: That’s a pretty narrow definition of an action movie. Call it a “Steven Seagall movie”, and I’ll agree with you.

    Exactly; that’s a Bad action movie. A good one has “moments” and motivation. There’s a good reason they’re blowing up shit! It has to do with real human connections!

    But this is not absolutes so much as individual taste. Some people love watching movies where a character sits alone in a room. They love to fill in what the movie hints at.

    I find that kind of movie incredibly boring because I do that kind of thing all the time anyway. I can be sitting in the doctor’s waiting room and I have backstories for everyone by the time my name gets called. As a novelist, this is practice. It’s a pianist’s version of finger exercises.

    I want someone to ENGAGE my attention with clever storytelling and twists and turns. I want someone to work hard at the kinds of things I work hard on; and perhaps surprise me.

    A friend with a very literary bent once read one of my suspense novels and found it very exciting. She wasn’t used to that. It made her nervous.

  52. 52
    geg6 says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism:

    Well, I won’t speak to anything regarding superhero movies or martial arts films. They don’t interest me and I don’t watch them, so it wouldn’t be fair to criticize them any more than to say the whole concept bores me. But since when is The Princess Bride an action film? There have been a few exceptions of action films that I liked (I will watch Bond flicks, for instance), but most of them are formulaic bores with the worst acting outside my local community theater.

  53. 53
    SectionH says:

    @p.a.: Never heard of that. It is possible to breed plants better adapted to your microclimate, well, depending on the plant. I remember an article about a woman in Phoenix who has grown basil from her own plants for years, to the point where hers is extremely drought/heat tolerant. It seems to be easy to adapt. Mr S now has volunteer basil that seems to be a cross of Thai basil, which grows like billy-o for us, and regular Italian which doesn’t deal with our soil and needs coddling. The leaves are slightly pointy, and the flowers more purple than usual, and it seems happier in the ground. Very good flavor too, mostly like Italian.

    As far as the variation in peppers of the same kind, that seems to be normal, and fairly unpredictable. I remember an article about New Mexico chilies, where the variation in heat was discussed, and that one could never be quite sure just how spicy a particular day’s food would be. That’s also true of the salsa at our favorite Mexican restaurant here. Same recipe day to day, but the hotness varies, because the chilies do.

    One might expect more variation in the peppers grown in higher latitudes with shorter growing seasons – from personal experience, comparing our results in the Bluegrass to our results in SoCal, this is the case, but I’ve also heard similar from assertions from professional plantsmen. We grew Habaneros in Lexington, and had a lot of variation. Some were merely pretty spicy, while some were more knock your socks off blazing as advertised. Here, they’re pretty uniformly extremely hot.

    ETA: Yes, I was going to walk. Still waiting on Mr S…

  54. 54
    WereBear says:

    @geg6: But since when is The Princess Bride an action film?

    Oh, it’s got swordfights and cunning intrigue and outright villains and torture?

    That’s where definitions become marketing, and people don’t necessarily agree where everything goes.

    I know people who will sit through three hours of of a movie that is 90% car rides and long silences and it turns out the mother psychologically screwed up the daughter in the most awful way from the most selfish of motivations.

    Yet they will not watch a movie where the mother is the power behind the throne of a crime syndicate, and screws up her daughter by murdering people she loves, all for money and power.

    Yet these two movies are thematically the same, and from my point of view, equally violent.

    In fact, I’m watching The Sopranos for the first time these last few months, and while it is quite violent, the times I cringe is when Livia Soprano appears. Her kind of cruelty lasts a lot longer.

  55. 55
    geg6 says:

    @WereBear:

    Not a big Sopranos fan either. Watched most of the first few seasons and when Nancy Marchand goes, that pretty much killed it for me. She was the only interesting character to me. The rest are just your garden variety petty thugs, including his wife and kids. Mama Soprano, OTOH, was fascinating.

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