This past year I grew a variety of warm-weather vegetables as well. My favorites are the winter squash and watermelons.

Cucumber, Baby Persian–My second year growing these, and still no luck 😦 I’ll keep trying. These are my favorite cukes to snack on during the summer.
Cucumber, Silver Slicer–I grew this variety mainly due to Jess from Roots and Refuge. It grew well, but the skin was thinker than I’d like and it was slightly bitter. (To be fair, I’m highly sensitive to bitter foods.)
Cucumber, Snow’s Fancy Pickling–Grew pretty well. The variety originated in my hometown, which is why I decided to try it. It’s a basic pickling cucumber, and grew pretty well.
Melon, Delice de la Table–I only harvested one of these, and it was right after a big rain and the melon had split. Very tasty lobed cantaloupe variety with a matte orange rind. I’ll grow again this year.
Melon, Kajari–Another variety I grew mainly due to Jess’s ravings about how good it was. Like my other melon, though I only harvested one, right after it split. It tasted like a basic small honeydew melon, imho, though the rind is a pretty orange with green stripes. Will not be growing this year.
Watermelon, Mini Love–I picked this one up on Amazon and tried it because I had not have a lot of luck with larger watermelons, and I’m the only one who likes watermelons in my house in any event. I planted it late in the season and only harvested one fruit, but that fruit was amazing–perfectly sweet, firm flesh, not too many seeds, and just the right size for one person. Upon doing more research I found it was a Johnny’s Seeds F1 variety, and an All American Select winter. It’s also one of Johnny’s most expense varieties. I fully understand why. I will definitely be growing this one again next year.

Summer would not be the same without the nightshade family. I really went overboard in this category as I’m trying to find the varieties that are worth the acid reflux that they usually bring.

Eggplant, Listada de Gandia–This was my first year trying eggplants. This eggplant produced cute, 4″ long purple and white striped eggplants. Very pretty, but as I found out, most eggplants are covered in thick spikes. Probably will not be growing eggplants again this year as I rarely cook with them.
Pepper, Alma Paprika (sweet)–This variety was productive, but unfortunately not as spicy as I had hoped.
Pepper, Aurora (hot, decorative)–This was a decorative pepper that produced yellow, orange, red, and purple 2″ long peppers on a small plant. It made for a nice decorative plant until the peppers started to get overripe, at which point they turned from purple to a grayish-violet color that was pretty gross looking.
Pepper, Bangles Blend–This variety is meant to be a stuffing pepper. It was very prolific but the peppers were small which very thick flesh and a hard skin–no one who I gave them to liked them.
Pepper, Biquinho Yellow (hot)–Cute, small novelty pepper. Moderately hot, slightly lemony taste. This variety took the longest to mature by far–at least five months. Once the plants were up and running, though, they were very productive.
Pepper, Black Pearl (decorative)–The longest growing decorative pepper I’ve grown yet; took four months before it set some fruit. Very cute pepper plant–black-purple leave sand little black berries. I’d actually recommend this one as a nice medium-height decorative plant for a garden.
Pepper, Fish (hot)–Grew relatively fast but took forever to bear fruit. Did not become very prolific until the very end of the season. The varigation was on the leaves and peppers, but it was very slight.
Pepper, Pasilla Bajio Chile Chilaca (mild/hot)–Received this one from Botanical Interests as part of my “black plants” buying spree. I’m pretty sure the seeds they sent were not this variety at all; they look more like Shishito peppers. The peppers never turned black and were smaller that they should have been. That said, I really loved the flavor–mild and sweet with the perfect level of heat for my tastes of heat. Great for stir-frys for the flavor only, as the peppers themselves are not more that 4″ long and think skinned. This variety also grew very fast and started putting out fruit early and often.
Tomatillo, Grande Rio Verde–All of my tomatillos grew a lot faster and a lot taller than the seed packets stated. This one, in particular, grew really tall. Both of them ended up toppling over several times b/c I had them in grow pots that were too small. Because of this they both got some kind of bumpy growth on the stems and started to wilt, and neither produced fruit. Will try again this year.
Tomatillo, Purple–Same as above.
Tomato, Barry’s Crazy Cherry–These took a while to start fruiting, but once they did it was relentless. The pale yellow fruit was moderately sweet and had a hard, spiky end.
Tomato, Carbon–Moderatley productive. Tasted less complex than a Paul Robeson.
Tomato, Paul Robeson–Moderately productive. Due to our really dry summer, many of the tomatoes had catfacing. Still, the ones I harvested tasted amazing fresh, especially sprinkled with salt. A must-grow for this season.
Tomato, Sun Gold Pole Cherry–A very profilic and tasty orange-yellow cherry tomato. Very sweet, think skinned. Everyone seemed to like them.  
Tomato, Thornburn’s Terracotta–This one was moderately productive, with an interestingly matte red/orange color. t was not very tasty, however.
Tomato, White Tomesol–This was a free seed packed I received from Baker Creek. It was by far the most prolific tomato I grew that wasn’t a cherry tomato. The medium-sized tomatoes turn a slight slickly yellow when ripe. The taste reminded me of a watered-down Paul Robeson. 

I’m not a huge summer squash fan, so I didn’t try to grow many. That said, I haven’t had much luck with them–either from seed or seedling. No buckets full of zuchinni–I feel like a failed Midwesterner 😦 Maybe this year.

Summer Squash, Fordhook Zucchini–Not much luck. Small plants.
Summer Squash, Yellow Scallop–Plants were good sized–bushy, and produced pretty well. I didn’t start this one until late summer so it did not have a long harvest season.

Winter squash, however, are definitely my favorites. I always try to grow more that my city lot can handle. Usually I’m pretty successful, but this past year was not a great squash year overall. Here are the varieties I tried this past year:

Pumpkin, Musquee de Provence (c. moschata)–My favorite pumpkin by far. It looks exactly like an antique Cinderella pumpkin–in fact , in many seed catalogues label this the “Cinderella pumpkin”. It is absolutely gorgeous. Unfortunately it’s a full-sized pumpkin (15-20lbs average) grown on a long, vigorous vine, and I have a moderately-big city yard to grow in. The first year I grew it I let it take over my back fence and grow into the alley behind us, and I harvested one big pumpkin (and several smaller ones). This past year, however, I tried to limit the vines to one main vine and put it in a less sunny area, my blossoms never seemed to get fertilized and I did not get any pumpkins.
Pumpkin, Casparita (c. pepo, F1 hybrid)–This is an adorable small white pumpkin–it’s abotu as wide as a Jack-be Little pumpkin and twice as tall. They ended up being smaller than I had hoped, but they are still very cute–and given that it has a bush habit, I can grow it in a grow bag anywhere with no issues with space. Definitely growing this again next year.
Pumpkin, Jack Be Little (c. pepo)–This is that tiny little orange decorative pumpkin that you see in every store come fall. The vines for this one turned out to be longer and more vigorous than many full-sized squashes I grew. It was cute but not worth the space it took in my yard, especially when you can buy it anywhere.
Winter Squash, Blue Hubbard (c. maxmia)–This is our favorite winter squash–firm, dry orange flesh with no strings. This is a hard variety to get ahold of; the only place I can find it locally is at an apple orchard about 30 min away. My own plants grew pretty well at first, but then the squash vine borers took down 90%b of my winter squash plants. I did a second sowing in late July, which avoided the vine borers but did not give the fruit enough time to ripen. I ended up buying a few from the local apple orchard.
Winter Squash, Honeynut (hybrid, moschata/maxima)–This variety is one I got from Botanical Interests. It’s meant to be a baby butternut squash. I hoped that the vines would be shorter than the massive Waltham Butternut squash plants I grew last year. I had to re-sow these pants due to vine borers. I had plenty of time to do so but even so the squash did not get bigger than 4″ long, and remained mostly green. When we ate them, they were pretty stringy and the taste was eh. Not recommended.
Winter Squash, Butterscotch  (F1 Hybrid)–We got this variety from Johnny’s Seeds–I believe they bred it but I’m not sure. These squash had a medium sized vine and produced pale orange mini-butternut squashes which were 6″ or so long. I had to resow these due to the vine borers as well, and still got a decent harvest of them. They tasted fine.
Winter Squash, Jester F1 (Delicata) (c. pepo)–This ended up being my partner’s favorite squash this year. As with every other winter squash, the vine borers got to it. It has a nice bush habit, so it should fit in the garden fine next year. I ended up buying mine from the local orchard. This squash does not store well–ours were dried out by December. Until then they are very sweet and tender.
Winter Squash, Red Kuri (c. maxmia)–I had not luck growing this my first year, but I did have luck this past year. I did a second sowing in July, and I was able to harvest a few squash by October. These squash store pretty well–I cut into the last one this week as hte rind was starting to go, but the interior was as juicy as a newly harvested squash and showed no damage at all. Vines are medium length.
Winter Squash, Starry Night (Acorn) (c. pepo)–Again, the vine borers got it. I was able to harvest one from my second sowing. Bush habit.
Winter Squash, Thelma Sanders’ Sweet Potato (Acorn)–I planted these later in the summer and avoided the vine borers. The vines were very vigorous and grew medium length–I can see them goring longer given the chance, however. These vines were very prolific. I either harvested the squash too soon, or the flesh itself is very pale, but none of the squash I harvested stored very well or looked very appetizing when I cut into them. Probably not going to grow again.

So, 2021’s gardens was moderately successful, on the whole. I’m excited to see how 2022’s garden will turn out!

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