The Garden

I feel badly about skipping posts here and yammering on about berries and the garden, rather than embroidery and literacy, but the new website and blog are not online yet, and this is my life at the moment. I am a bit more than a recreational gardener: my goal is to grow much of the food we eat year-round. I truly enjoy it, every part of it, planning and planting, weeding and watering, harvesting and processing, cooking and eating. It’s all a part of the self-sufficient, DIY, healthful, creative lifestyle I want to live.

So be it. No one is forced to read this, right?

We picked the first of the broccoli and cauliflower. I let the cauliflower go a little long, waiting for Mike to do the harvesting–it’s the only part of gardening he enjoys–but it’s still de-yummy-licious.

This is our best broccoli yet! Last year, the broccoli was our sacrificial crop; something I could never identify devoured it, leaves, heads, and all. The year before, the heads were tiny. Our soil is poor. We’re working on it. This year, I planted the broc in the bed with the snow peas. Peas are nitrogen fixers, and I understand broccoli needs lots of nitrogen. I also planted onions around each broccoli plant, thinking they might deter insect or worm pests. It’s a wild guess on my part, but I’m inclined to do it again based on results. The plants look great, the heads look great.

It’s the first year I’ve tried cauliflower. It won’t win any awards, but it will feed us for a few good meals. It lives in the cabbage bed with collards and kale. Something is eating holes in some of the leaves in this bed. I can’t tell what’s happening in the cabbage heads, but the damage doesn’t look too bad. Nothing like the damage to last year’s broccoli.

Tonight’s dinner: shrimp (we caught) sauteed in basil (we grew) butter on whole wheat spaghetti and steamed broccoli and cauliflower just harvested. Big yum!

Categories: Alaska

4 replies »

  1. For a wonderful treat, combine black pepper, a bit of salt and red pepper flakes with olive oil in a baking sheet with sides (aka jelly roll pan). Toss cauliflower in this to coat and bake at 400 for 20-25 min. Stir 2-3 times during cooking. The cauliflower roasts to a beautiful golden color and the result is spicy, but not hot. It’s delicious!
    Your garden goodies are gorgeous.

  2. I’m doing this right now. I’m using cauliflower *and broccoli* because I have trouble following instructions.

  3. They were fabulous! I probably used a bit more red pepper than recommended because the veggies had a kick, but Mike and I happen to like that kick.

    It’s nice to be able to cook with nothing but olive oil, salt, and pepper. We skipped the oil on the grilled salmon.