Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Around the Farm and CSA Week 9

You honestly can't believe how many seeds I have.
And up until a month and a bit ago, seeds were driving me nuts. Absolutely nuts.
Considering I have worked away at this job for the last 18 years, and never once in all those years have I planted all the seeds I had, over the years this tends to be a bit of an accumulation.
There has never been a year in which I didn't acquire some new seeds....there are always things I want to try, and some times I double order, thinking for two years in a row how cool a certain thing would be to grow, not realizing I have the seed, but didn't plant it.
This year I threw caution, and seeds, to the wind, and cleaned up lots of seed at the same time.
When my friend came to plough up my fields for me in the spring, he ploughed up an area I wasn't expecting to be ploughed. It sat there until one day I rototilled it. I looked at it and then did what I have wanted to do for a long time.
I came into the house, grabbed hundreds of packets of old seed, some as old as 15 years, ripped open the packages and dumped them all into a bowl. It was an attractive mix of seed-squash, beans, greens of every sort, corn, herbs, flowers. I honestly don't know what all.
Out I went to my awaiting bare patch and scattered the seed. It was a wee bit challenging because the chickens were interested too, so I lightly raked over the patch. The rains came beautifully and the seeds popped.
Lots of seed. A surprising amount.
Let this be a lesson to you. You don't need to buy new seed every year. Some seeds remain viable for a long, long time.
Although inevitably some weeds have appeared in this patch and are growing happily too, I call this my garden of dreams.  I always dreamt of doing this and I am constantly surprised by some of the things I am finding in this garden. Today I found a "hot as hades" white round radish, likely 3 inches in diameter.
A pea is blooming here and there, the spigiarello is everywhere, searingly hot mustards colour the patch with there purples.
I won't get too much from it I don't think. It's pretty thickly seeded so things will likely remain small as they lack much room to grow, but I'll interfere very little and let it do it's thing. I am thinking too that I will leave everything I can in the patch and let it go to seed there, so the garden remains a perpetual surprise garden. But try to get some of the weeds out so they don't go to seed too. What is the saying? One year's seed is seven year's weed.

The greens in todays basket were from this garden and will be good sauteed, giving you interesting and bold flavours.
I sure hope they weren't too wilted, but it is tough for them in this extreme heat.

The baskets also contained zucchini of some sort, onions, garlic, beans, basil flowers which are intended for either your flower vase, or to flavour oil or vinegar, carrots, cilantro, basil jelly (please return the jars), tomatoes and possibly something else I am not remembering.

Last year, I bought a kitchen tool that spiralizes veggies, and I barely looked at it at all. My intention was to make zucchini noodles and this year I have finally done it.
After using it to make the zucchini into nice curly long strips, I sautéed them in a bit of oil, popped on my fresh pasta sauce, and it was a hit. Definitely worth a try when the zucchini is coming on strong.

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