You can’t get more local than this. Walk out my back door and into a world of vegetables. And fruit. Strawberries to be exact. (The herbs are in pots on the deck.)
Our growing season is way too short, but I intend to take advantage of it.
Greens for salads and to add to my health shakes.
Cucumbers for salads and plain ol’ eating (Kelly loves them). And a pickling variety, because if you read the labels of pickle jars in the store they either have yellow and blue (makes green) dye in them or high fructose corn syrup (for the sweet kind). Really, can someone make a pickle that doesn’t contain fake ingredients? I can, that’s who. And I will.
I still need to learn to can. That’s a future project, along with grinding my own flour. However, half sours are my favorite kind of pickle, and you really can’t jar and keep them at that stage. At least I don’t think you can. If you know how to do that, please add a comment to this posting and let me know how.
And of course there are tomatoes, because there is nothing, I mean NOTHING, like a garden tomato.
The same thing can be said for strawberries. Only I didn’t know how to sustain a strawberry patch. I’ve since researched after the year I went out expecting another wonderful crop and there were only a spattering of strawberries. I think a lot of gardening expertise is learned by experience.
For example, this is the first year I didn’t plant marigolds along the edge of my garden and it was plagued with more pests than usual, especially slugs. I’ve put some in now, and sprinkled some dead heads among the plants, and things seem to be better. But you can be sure next year the marigolds are going in at the same time as the vegetable seeds. And I’m going to plant them around the whole perimeter of the garden, outside the fence, as a bug fence.
Then there are a few more varieties of vegetables I like. Carrots and green beans and peppers are a given. Other things I try and maybe I’ll do them next year, maybe I’ll try something else.
This year is another try growing broccoli. I haven’t grown it since I served it to my parents from my garden when we were first married and my dad found a worm in his. If I find worms this time, broccoli in my garden is history.
Oh, and there is always zucchini. Too much zucchini. But it sure is good on the grill, or breaded and lightly fried.
I’ve just planted my second crop of greens for a late harvest. Lettuce, more spinach, kale. Plus swiss chard is on it’s way after a late start. I’m hoping to harvest well into the fall. I also intend to learn about cold frames for extending the harvesting season. Probably not this year, though.
I hope, someday, I can pass on all the garden wisdom I have yet to learn to my children and grandchildren. As well as the importance of eating pesticide-free, non-GMO food. It can be grown that way. And it tastes way better than anything from the store.