24 May 2011

lessons in gardening

We're having our first little heat wave and the veggies are loving it. The tomatoes are climbing like mad and the peas are coming in. So far most of our efforts have been at least moderately successful. I am still amazed each time I pull something edible out of that garden.

One lesson learned is to sow radish seeds more sparsely and thin more aggressively. Our first patch of radishes was too crowded and they all ended up undersized and oddly-shaped. Luckily they still tasted good. Above is our one perfectly round radish which I photographed carefully, then ate.

It seems that carrots also appreciate a bit of wiggle room while growing, though I found it very sweet that carrots planted too close together will sometimes entwine themselves around their neighbor. We're calling them lover carrots. They have magical powers and bestow good luck in love. I'm sure of it.

We grew four different types of lettuce, all of which came up beautifully. We have realized, though, that we don't actually eat a lot of salad. And we are no more likely to eat salad when fresh greens are only steps from our back door. This is a sad truth, but a truth none the less. So I harvested all the greens last night and took a cooler full of them to work today. I am very glad to have all that lettuce in the happy bellies of my coworkers tonight. I am going to plant okra, squash, and zucchini in the empty spaces. I know we will eat those!

With temperatures spiking into the 90s this weekend, it was high time for strawberry-rhubarb pie. This is my favorite pie of all. Our local strawberries are almost done, but I managed to find a pint of local berries for my pie.

I also finally broke down and turned on the AC this weekend. I always resist as long as possible. But there comes a night--usually in late May for us--when I wake up and the night air is so hot and still and humid that sleep is difficult. So I give up, pad down the hallway, and turn on the AC. It pours out deliciously cool air and I flop back in bed and sigh a most happy sigh.

Welcome, summer, we're so very glad you're here.


amy h said...

I can only eat so many salads, so I've started making green smoothies. Much to my surprise, I really like them! They are great for packing in a bunch of greens. I've been making this one (though mine comes out green, not gold, maybe because I use hemp protein powder + a little vanilla extract instead of the powder she mentions):

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