~ Val Van Meier Trees … maple, pine, ash, [...]
Spring fever hits me early. Longer days, with my chickens going into the coop later, and the arrival of seed catalogs start the process in January. In February I start my onions and leeks and come March, spring fever is in full force.
Imagine the hillsides in Nelson with few trees, and with stone walls and pasture as far as the eye can see. Continue on this daydream and now see sheep, lots of sheep, roughly 7,000 sheep. The year is about 1836. Sheep farming is still a thing here. Read about Nelson's sheep farmers today.
A visit with Sylvia Davatz, a passionate seed saver … and grower of rice and peanuts.
If I was going to try growing microgreens, I needed to decide what to use as a base, coir mats like Linda or soil like Gourmet Greens, a business I visited in Vermont years ago when I was thinking of adding a hoop house to extend our growing season. I suppose it’s all about preference and what you have available. I do like the idea of composting the seed-starting mix with the microgreen roots.
The season of long lasting squash and root vegetables has arrived. This time of year I always wish I had a root cellar. The Nelson Library has a book called Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits & Vegetables by Mike and Nancy Bubel. In a corner of the cover in a white multi-pointed star it says “Keep your produce ‘Harvest-Fresh’ in your own basement, porch, garage or closet hideaway!”
I have a starter from cherries that has been going for more than two years now. I truly don’t need three sourdough starters. The whole reason to start the highbush cranberry and raspberry starters was to share with the Nelson community.
Fall has arrived with crisp mornings and heavy dew on the lawn. Part of me wants to keep gardening, harvesting the last vegetables, preserving, getting the most out of our garden, and yet, I’m also ready to say goodbye to another season, put my feet up, and enjoy a good book.
Growing food is rewarding and is never the same year to year. It can also be frustrating when the weather or pests dash your dreams. And what to do when fruits and vegetables mature all at once. The choice is give the extra away, let it rot or put it by.
The curl of a pea or squash tendril, the flower petals of my newest flower, Torch Tithonia also known as Mexican Sunflower or the little frog sitting in a curve of the Orach leaf remind me to stop and enjoy the beauty around us.