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A Moveable Feast

10 Mar

Spring waits for no man.  My vegetable seeds are calling to me from the garage, wailing “Plant me noowww“.  In my last post I mentioned I am renting a house until I find the right one to buy.  As such, I have been researching a garden bed that I can plant, tend and then pack up and take with me when it’s time to go.  It needs to be light, easy to move and extremely affordable. I thought I’d share some of the ideas I came across in my research.

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Idea #1:  A Truck Garden.  Great mobility.  Maybe a bit…too much.

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Part of a project by film makers
Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis.
Photo from www.greenupgraders.com

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Rest On One’s Oars

20 Jan

Winter comforts: a snug room, the crackle and smell of a wood fire, amber candle flames, stacks of good books to read.  While the earth sighs in winter, drawing in upon itself, it is good to “rests on one’s oars” too.

Rest on one’s oars:  To relax after strenuous exertion; to suspend one’s efforts temporarily…Often this boating phrase is extended to mean…relying on the momentum of past performance to carry one along.   Rest on one’s oars was used literally in the early 18th century, and figuratively shortly thereafter.  From Picturesque Expressions: A Thematic Dictionary.

Gathered pine cones carry the seeds of the next chapter, foreshadowing spring’s fragrant new pines.

More comforts: a soft couch with plentiful pillows, thick, cozy throws, and dreaming dogs curled up fast asleep, legs twitching as they run in soft summer meadows.  Excuse me, I think I’ll curl up myself and rest on my oars for just a bit now.

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Herb Window Garden That Pleases the Senses

30 Dec

Kitchen Windowsill Potted Herb Garden

I am just one gardener in an ancient chain that practices the time-honored tradition of herb pot gardening.  What’s growing now on my windowsill?  A quartet of fragrant herbs in a long pot to intertwine and become luxuriously full and green: piney rosemary, delicate lemon balm, robust basil and sweet mint.

I  read somewhere that fresh herbs contain a higher concentrations of antioxidants than leafy greens.  This caught my eye because I’m always looking for ways to fit healthier food into my meals.  I don’t have anything against spinach and kale, but herbs taste so much better and smell delicious!Close Up of Lemon Balm Leaf

I learned that lemon balm has “furry” leaves (see photo at right).  To me it smells of lemon verbena soap and tastes like lemon drops.  Along with mint it adds an unexpected, almost sweet element to salads.  Fresh basil makes the best pesto, and there is nothing like the strong flavor of rosemary to compliment hot, juicy roasted chicken.

Most herbs flourish easily indoors year round, requiring only a few (but key!) things: a window with six or more hours of daily sunlight, well draining potting soil (I like Miracle Grow), a chance to dry out a bit between waterings, having their flower buds pinched off and occasional fertilizing (over fertilizing causes rapid growth that is virtually tasteless).  Harvesting their leaves and sprigs actually promotes new growth.

Ahhh, fresh herbs within arm’s reach.  Definitely one of life’s simple pleasures!

Potted Herb Garden

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