Caught Red-Handed


This is a cautionary tale for all you men out there.

When you have a particularly bountiful crop, you can spends much of August and September storing and preserving vegetables. If you’re lucky enough to have a good friend to keep you company, the chore can actually be quite pleasant. But one year we had a harvest my husband Ted will never forget.

Our daughter-in-law Valerie had put a lot of peppers into the trial garden that summer, and her experiments were a bit too successful. We gave peppers away to customers and friends, and still had two huge baskets full of them.

Ted said, “Lois, why don’t you chop them up and freeze? I’ll help you.”

We turned on the CBC and set to work, chopping and chatting away. I noticed my hands were feeling hot. I thought, “Oh, for heaven’s sake, we’ve got some hot peppers mixed in.” I wasn’t too worried, since I was sure that we hadn’t picked any really hot peppers like jalapenos and habaneros. Still, my hands were beginning to feel like they were on fire. I asked Ted, “Are your hands hot?”

“No,” he shrugged.

We kept chopping and chopping, and from time to time, I’d run to the tap to cool my fingers. I kept asking, “Ted, are you sure your hands aren’t hot? Because mine are really getting painful.”

“No, no,” he said.

Finally, just as we were getting to the end, Ted excused himself. Maybe he should have thought to wash his hands first.

A minute later, I heard this mournful wail from the bathroom: “LO-O-O-ISSSS!” I guess his hands had been hot after all!

He walked very gingerly for the rest of the day.

-Lois Hole, I'll Never Marry A Farmer


Things are Warming Up... with Hot and Sweet Peppers!


Last year, I filled up a Big Bag Bed with 9 different pepper varieties ranging from "Golden Calwonder" (which is a delicious, orange-coloured, bell pepper great for stuffing) to "Red Savina"—the world's hottest habanero pepper.
It was the first year I tried the Big Bag Bed, which is a large, round, fabric container that is great for growing plants during the summer. It is also easy to fold up and store for winter. The peppers grew beautifully in the BBB and I had wonderful peppers for fresh eating and cooking during summer and well into the fall.

One of my favorite varieties was called "Red Cherry Sweet." It produced gorgeous, deep-red, 4 cm wide fruit that had a spicy-hot flavour but not so hot that I needed to stick my mouth under the kitchen faucet and pour cold water into my mouth.

If you love peppers, and want to start you own indoors, early February is the time to kick things into gear. High quality potting soil, great seed varieties and some grow lights (currently on sale, at 22-24% off regular prices) are the essentials for growing the most vigorous seedlings that will get off to a great start in your garden.

By the way—and this is from personal experience—only plant super spicy peppers like "Red Savina" if you plan on using it sparingly in certain spicy dishes, or perhaps if you have a predilection for masochism!

~Jim Hole

p.s. Our 2015 seed list is now online (click here to view.. we are still adding a handful of seeds to the list from Pacific Northwest Seeds). Come in and get your seeds soon, before they sell out!

You can also phone 780 419 6800 extension 3 to place your mail order. Phone lines are open from 9:00AM-4:30PM MST.