Sunday, June 26, 2011

Greens Day

We've had good weather this weekend -- sunny, warm but not blazingly hot, breezy -- so today I convinced myself it was a good time to get out to the gardens!

I started with putting in about an hour in the Renaissance Man's garden, weeding like mad. The plot has a tendency to harbor wild onions along with the usual weedy suspects and unruly mint and lemon balm, so I needed to take some time to beat back the greenery and find my own crops. Sad to say, the weeds had overtaken most of the pac choi and chard I had planted, so I will need to replant, and the radishes succumbed to early heat and went straight to flowers without developing the roots.

On the up side, the strawberry patch produced a nice amount of berries for us this year and is sending out new runners, and the garlic is almost ready to harvest. The lone surviving tomato seedling has set fruit, the basil is coming along, and despite a few nibbles, the broccoli plant is holding strong.

After cleaning up the garden, I harvested chamomile (off the newly transplanted plants), more lavender, and a big bunch of oregano for drying, and I think I will have to return soon for more mint and lemon balm.

I returned home for lunch and enjoyed a light meal of this delicious fava bean dip I had made earlier in the morning. The fava beans came from The Sheep Farmer at yesterday's market, and the dip includes garlic scapes and goat cheese -- all good things! I pulled out some leftover pita bread for dipping, then cleaned out the bowl using slices of fresh cucumber. YUM.

Shortly after that satisfying lunch (and a cookie), I headed out to the Contradance Callers' garden to do some additional cleanup and to check on my vegetables. (Sorry, forgot the camera yet again!)

I weeded a LOT -- around the bean spiral, half the raised beds in the "inner sanctum," the squash and cucumber beds, and my back patch. Whew! I was pretty exhausted after that.

But after all the cleanup, I had more work to do -- harvesting! The Red Choi pac choi has done well in its first round, and I picked four medium-sized heads to add to this coming week's vegetable rolls for market. I also picked a small amount of golden chard and a BIG bread bag full of broccoli raab (also destined for vegetable rolls).

It's a good year for herbs, too, as I was able to pick a large amount of dill (enough to fill two dehydrator trays) and a bit of basil. The smells of summer!

After a glass -- well, a quart jar! -- of lemonade and a visit with the Contradance Callers, I headed home to put away my green finds for the day -- and to rest.

But oh! it's all making me hungry already!

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