This site is an archive of For the latest information about Susy and her adventrures, visit the Cultivate Simple site.
Thank you for all your support over the years!

One Lonely Gourd

September 5th, 2009

I started bird house gourd plants this spring. I gave one to my mom and I kept one to plant on my trellis on the garage. My mom had a gourd set fairly early on, it’s pretty big now. Mine is still fairly small but it seems to be growing.
I was hoping to get more than 1 gourd since I was wanting to give them out for Christmas. Oh well, I guess I’ll have to try again next year. It was just something I decided to grow to add a little fun to the gardens.

Anything fun growing in your garden?

I Spy Pumpkins

August 31st, 2009

While visiting my mom’s house this weekend I had to take a photo of these pumpkins. They are planted in our corn patch as part of a 3 sisters garden.
Do you recognize these? They’re Cinderella Pumpkin ‘Rouge Vif d’Etampes’ of course, from those seeds I saved last fall.

Anyone else growing great things from saved seeds?

Gardening Holidays: Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Day

August 8th, 2009

Today is Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbors’ Porch Day – HOW FUN. I happened up on these great beauties for free at our local bee supply shop. We’ve been keeping up with ours, so this gave me the perfect fodder to celebrate this holiday!
Mr Chiots ran in to town yesterday afternoon (since I needed photos for today, we celebrated a day early). He put them on our friend’s porch, right on the porch swing.
Unfortunately he was caught in the act. Ollie, their crazy little dog wanted to keep the zucchini (I’m sure he thought it was a dog toy).
In the end the zucchini is back at our house (our friend’s don’t appreciate zucchini as much as we do). I sauteed it last night and it’s marinading in a balsamic vinaigrette in the fridge. We’ll enjoy it as a side dish, on pizza, or on a sandwich.

Are you going to celebrate this fantastic holiday (if so, snap a photo, put it on your blog, and link to it in the comments)?

My First ‘Ronde de Nice’ Squash

July 15th, 2009

My first ‘Ronde de Nice’ squash was ready to harvest on Sunday!
I’ve had a few female flowers open before this one, but they weren’t pollinated fully so the fruits didn’t grow this big. This one I hand pollinated (I need Chicago Mike to send me some squash bees).
This squash weighed in at 9 ounces. I picked it small because it’s the perfect size for Mr Chiots and I to eat in one meal. I love squash fixed in so many ways: sauteed, steamed with olive oil and pepper, battered & fried, au gratin, in omelets, in lasagna, and many other ways. I have 4 squash plants so pretty soon we’ll be eating squash every day I think, and it will really help my garden harvest totals for the Garden Harvest Challenge!

What’s your favorite summer squash recipe?

Ronde de Nice Squash

June 25th, 2009

This year I’m growing Ronde de Nice squash instead of regular zucchini. Why did a choose these little round zucchinis instead of the regular ones?
Ronde de Nice Squash
Could you pass up this description? These tasty little round zucchinis have been a favorite for generations in French farmer’s markets. Because their tender skin & flesh bruise easily they are poor candidates for our supermarkets, but are easily grown by the home gardener. Harvest these pretty squash as babies, when several inches in diameter; or grow them to 3-4 inches. Serve the smaller ones steamed or sauteed with other veggies or stuff the larger ones and to bake and serve for great summer meals.
Ronde de Nice Squash Blooming
They’re very quick growing plants, I started mine in late May and the one I potted up early is fairly large and has tons of blossoms on it. I’ll be eating some of these blossoms as well as leaving some for pollination.

We’re big fans of steamed or sauteed zucchini in the summer so we’re excited for our plants to start producing. I have 4 plants in all, I’m hoping I have enough. Last summer I had 2 zucchini plants and we didn’t have enough (I know I’m the only person that didn’t have enough zucchini).

What kind of summer squash do you grow? How do you enjoy eating them?


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.