Monday, May 11, 2009

Independence Days Update

1. Plant something: Armenian cucumbers, zucchinis, and pumpkin. Not sure how well they will fare in the heat we are having, but we shall see.

2. Harvest something: A good time for this. I harvested, swiss chard, beets, radish, basil, carrots, and the past couple of days over two pounds of tomatoes with more on the way! They aren't the prettiest tomatoes I have ever seen but really, I am just amazed that I have some! :)

3. Preserve something: Does freezing stuff count? If so I made two big batches of pesto using basil from the garden and froze it. It freezes really well I have found. Tomorrow I start my canning adventure so next week should be a hoot!

4. Reduce waste: I am of course composting everything as usual. Now that it is so hot I am trying to be more mindful of cooking in a way that reduces the heat in the house so we have been barbecuing a lot. I have also been using the crock pot even more than usual. I am getting more and more creative at using up everything that is leftover in our fridge so that we very seldom throw any food away unless it looks a bit dodgy, and then the dogs get it.

5. Preparation and storage: I have the book "Food Matters", by Mark Bittman to read on my night stand as well as the usual huge pile of Mother Earth News. I am making a huge effort to read EVERY night rather than falling into bed exhausted because I know if I don't make the time it wont happen, and I do so love to read. I have also started digging out the old sand box for my new veggie patch. The sand will be used as top soil on the back yard.

6. Build community food systems: I gave swiss chard to our neighbour across the street, and to some Mom's at Kendra's school. I have also been asked by two separate people at school this past week to "teach" them how to grow veggies after they saw me give them away. Not sure if anything will come of it, but I am always happy to show them what I know, (which wont take long!), if it does

7. Eat the food: We had a swiss chard frittata like thingy this evening with tomato and basil, and we also had beets. I have also been eating radishes in salads, and we had pesto the other evening.


bodaat said...

You know sister, it's funny you bring up point number 6. Probably about a week or so ago I was thinking about you and thinking that should open up a small green consulting company. well, that sounds kinda fancy but you would help regular people learn to become more green - in their home, their work, etc. I think you would be SUPER fabulous at it!

fullfreezer said...

Freezing definitely counts! I have an ice cube tray that is the 'pesto tray'. It has silicon bottoms to the cubes so they push out easily and the holes are smaller than regular trays. I make little cubes of pesto (circles really) then I can easily thaw how much I want, add my cheese and we're off. I've also been known to be lazy and throw one into simmering tomato sauce straight out of the freezer for some extra flavor.
I'm so jealous of fresh tomatoes- even if they aren't pretty. I do think that's a problem with some beginning gardeners- the produce isn't always pretty like it is in the store so they feel like a failure. But there is nothing like the taste of a fresh, ugly tomato still warm from the garden.
Keep up the good work.

Esther Montgomery said...

It's amazing how far your seasons are ahead of ours.

Last year we ate swiss chard more or less all the way through the summer and well into the autumn - when we started mixing it with gram flour to make veggie burgers.

Here's for the embarrassing bit . . . when I mentioned I read a blog by someone in Arizona, my husband immediately asked if I would ask you if you know 'Tombstone'. I asked what the point of that was; that you could only answer 'yes' or 'no' - then what?

This didn't put him off at all. He now wants me to ask if you have seen the film 'Last Shoot Out at the OK Coral'.

(Oh help!)

This is all because he has a special interest in Doc Holliday. He (my husband) invents board games (of the intellectual, abstract variety . . . in the chess group rather than the Mousetrap or Dizzy Dinasaur variety). Because hardly anyone likes abstract games, he then looks for a theme, or a story, which can be superimposed on the game to make it more accessible to people like . . . hmmm . . . me!

I look forward to your monosyllabic answers!


Esther Montgomery said...

Oh. It's not 'Last' Shoot out. It's 'Shoot Out'. My film history isn't up to much.


Mo said...

Thanks Bo! I would love to go and study something like sustainability studies, or permaculture one day, and then perhaps this just could happen! In the meantime I will just keep on blogging :)

Thanks for the encouragement Judy, I will certainly keep going. I am always amazed when I manage to grow anything that we can eat. It is always a small miracle to me.

Esther, Yes, and no!!! :):)

That is yes, I know Tombstone. In fact I even threw up on the mainstreet there several years ago when I was pregnant with Emily, and had such terrible morning sickness that I couldn't contain myself. And no, I haven't seen the movie, at least not that I remember. Tell your husband that he needs to bring you all out here and you can stay with us, and we will all visit Tombstone, and I promise not to throw up! :)

Our growing season is almost coming to an end here now with the extreme heat on its way. I will start planting again in August for the Fall season. The summers here are actually quite barren on the veggie front, rather like winter elsewhere.

Esther Montgomery said...

Wouldn't that be wonderful!


Mo said...

Indeed it would Esther, indeed it would! x