Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Warm dirt

Dear God:

Today, I am thankful for warm dirt.

Friends in San Juan Capistrano are already enjoying a bountiful harvest of homegrown tomatoes. To date, I haven't planted a single vegetable which means I am way behind in Southern California time but right on time in Colorado Springs.

I bought one cherry tomato plant. That's it for this year - I promise. I don't know when I'll plant it. The Master Gardener at the nursery reminded me not to do so until the nighttime temperature is consistently above 40 degrees. Tomatoes need warm dirt. At nearly 7,000 feet in altitude, we're not quite there. Maybe in a week, or two I'll have warm dirt. If not, I will forget about tomatoes this year and indulge in organics and heirlooms at the Farmer's Market - much easier but less fun.

Next weekend, I will finally get to plant eggplant and my all-time favorite Swiss Chard in the garden plot. In pots, I will transplant Globe basil and hot peppers. I now wish I had bought the beets - love the greens in salad. I will look for more Japanese eggplant, hot peppers and herbs, and maybe one zucchini.

And, in case you're wondering, here's what's already growing in my edible garden:

Nearly ready for harvesting:
  • Rhubarb

Already harvesting:
  • Chives
  •  Tarragon - my "secret" ingredient in pasta sauces, delicious raw in salads

  • Sage
  • Lovage (has a mild celery taste - easy to grow - hosts swallowtail larvae)
  • Mint (for homemade Mojitos)
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary - grown in pots, over-wintered indoors
  • Oregano - grown in a pot, over-wintered indoors

  •  Jerusalem artichokes - perennials, have never harvested (keep forgetting - don't ask why)
  • Shallots - forgot to harvest last two years; planted more this year

For these blessings, I am grateful.


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