Monday, January 25, 2010

Planning the summer garden

The time has come, at last, to plan for the spring and summer gardens. I get really excited about being outside again, especially this year. I get so bored with being cooped up in the house. It makes me so grumpy. Felder Rushing's book has been cracked open, seed catalogs are bedtime reading,the seeds have been taken down and a small set of lettuces sitting on the kitchen window sill have germinated. We planted snow peas last weekend and will be planting English peas soon. Our turnips and mustard were vaporized by the two weeks of temps in the teens and twenties so we'll probably give them another go. Should I try broccoli from seed one more time? My seedlings haven't produced this year. I could speculate endlessly about the hot fall and the freezing winter or maybe too much nitrogen keeping them from flowering. I excel in the alchemy of gardening not the chemistry; I always plant with hope in my heart feeling wonder and awe when I get lucky enough to harvest anything. Maybe it's time to get serious and send off those soil samples...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Collards 2010

...cooked and ready to eat. To cook,heat some oil in a large, deep pan. Put in the damp, cleaned, chopped collards and steam with a small amount of water (what's all this chicken broth stuff promoted by foodies about?)for 10-15 minutes. Squeeze on some lemon juice and eat. Traditionally, Southerns use pork fat and vinegar but it really isn't necessary. Manga, manga.

...chopped and ready to cook. Cooks note: This pile of collards will cook down and there will only be enough for four servings.

... cleaned with stems removed. Eat the stems and you will die from indigestion-as in you are not a cow and the human stomach doesn't do collard stems.

... piled up on the kitchen counter; a mess of 'em.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Officially cold

It's official. Even Florida has been blasted with this damned cold. The citrus crop is now officially affected. So depressing. I bought lovely lemons just a week ago. The color so refreshing. Now I wish I'd bought more.
What does the rushing water of a Colorado stream in summer have to do with the cold? Well. In July the water in a Colorado spring is ice cold. So cold you gasp when you step into it and your feet become numb quickly. After spending two months sweating in the Southern US it feels oh-so-good and refreshing. It's cold because the winter snow high up in the mountains is slowly melting releasing the most, wonderful, clear and cool elixir of life. Personally I'm looking forward to the time when cold feels good again.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

so cold, cold, cold

When I got home from work the thermometer was at 40, a virtual heat wave! So, I bravely lifted one edge of the cover over my lettuce patch and found that there is still life in there. Thriving? I won't know until it warms some and that's a few days away. Fingers crossed and a carrot pulled for lunch tomorrow. (Peter Rabbit and Mr. Mcgregor come to mind.)Garden girl got game.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Epic Cold

It is seriously cold in the Land Down Under USA. Seriously. The nights have been in the teens and the days no warmer than freezing. Alas I just don't know if any of the cold weather crops can take days, and days, and days of this. We'll see. I've declined to look under the lettuce shelter. I rushed out and harvested all that I could the afternoon before the cold set in. And now I wait.