Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I am NOT a broccoli farmer

Update for the Growing Challenge - The beans I've started from seed are doing well and are about to be transplanted.... unfortunately they are probably going to have to take the place of the broccoli I planted. I was very excited about a week ago when these tiny little broccoli bunches showed up on a couple of plants.... SADLY they bloomed, and I went to look up what had gone wrong. According to my veggie book, these "bunches" were called buttons, and the book says to rip them out - probably not enough nitrate in my soil. Now, while I love gardening, and only know a small amount of information I know absolutely ZERO about the soil. I'm trying to be enthusiastic about learning, but I still find myself just planting things to try them out. On the other hand, my lettuce is doing very well, and we're going to eat some of it tonight. The tomato plants are going very well, and I'm going to transplant some more peppers into the garden too.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I totally stole this way of listing our simple living activities from Towards Sustainability - I am totally unoriginal - except for the first one.

Teaching the Next Generation - I finally have my students' "garden" up and running. I have 4 window boxes under grow lights where we're growing "already started" lettuce, onions, green beans and tomatoes. Then each child has two pots from seed of lettuce and green beans. THEY ARE LOVING IT. Today they were commenting on how the bean plant looked like it was unfolding in their peat cups. They find it absolutely cool that they are going to get to eat these - in previous years a seed was put in a cup, and then the cup came home and sat on a windowsill until it dried up from lack of tending. This year we are going to try to eat a salad before they leave for summer. - several have had their parents buy seed for them. One girl ran out and bought seeds, but doesn't have pots or soil. She is watching her yard to see where it is sunniest - I think I'll run by the garden shop to their recycle pots box and grab some big ones for her to use.... I'll try to post pictures of this soon.

Doing - Hanging on for the end of school, and trying to wrap up all of the suburban mom activities that make life anything but simple.

Making - I have a lot of projects to finish.... I need to pick one..... I also still need to make my little girls some more felt food. Maybe I'll do that tonight... hmmmm.... I've posted it, so I better get on it.

In the Garden - lettuce is getting larger and really starting to call to me to snip them. I have Romaine, and Red Leaf lettuce. The Romaine looks almost ready - I think - any suggestions? AND LOOK - I have 4 whole strawberries... better get those before the kids eat them.

Reading - The Omnivore's Dilemma - am I the last one to read this? I've just started, so no opinions yet.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

New Growth

Growing: The azaleas are dropping their blooms, and the veggies are growing just fine. Tonight I was able to catch the beginnings of the possible peaches, and the first little broccoli sprouts. If all of these fuzzy things develop right, then we're going to have to prop up the peach tree - It's only about 3 feet tall this year, but looks to have over 20 peaches on it - last year there were only 6.
The broccoli is also shooting up. I haven't grown this before, so I'm sort of just feeling my way around this.... and trying to keep Blondie and Cheesie from picking it for their Ranch Dip. They aren't quite convinced that the broccoli gets larger.

Sewing - I'm secretly working on some more "play" food for Blondie and Cheesie - okay, it's only been cut out. They have been asking for a couple of the patterns I have, so I hope to get those done this weekend while waiting for soccer games to get started. I may have to postpone it though so I can catch up on school stuff.

Cooking - Nothing significant, but I'm very much working on this whole Menu idea. It does seem to help us eat healthier, and cuts way down on grocery runs. I'm looking forward to later this spring when I can eat some of these delicious veggies.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Planting the garden

So, I've finally started putting the purchased plants into the ground. We had a freeze last night, and it was hard to wait, but I'm crossing my fingers we'll be okay. So today I planted about 60 sweet onions, 8 broccoli, 8 cauliflower, 12 tomatoes (various varieties), 8 bush bean plants, 2 peppers, and 4 cucumbers. I also planted 9 heads of lettuce in window boxes since the deer/rabbits got to them last year. I'm hoping they will stay safer on the deck. I begin an herb garden with oregano and basil, and still see part of my bay leaf tree growing. I still have more to plant, and think Brian is going to have to build some more boxes for me. I'm going to join the Growing Challenge over at one green generation, although the idea of trying to save seeds is very intimidating. To that end, we have beans growing from seed to add to the garden once cool weather plants start to wither a bit.