Tag Archive: urban gardening

State of the Garden

How exciting to see not only what is ready to eat now — the greens and herbs and strawberries — but the promise of what will come throughout the summer, so long as my dedicated attentions continue; the weather is cooperative; and the bugs, birds, and squirrels and I can negotiate my getting a decent share of what ripens.  The fairy rose in the last photo was a gift from a student who was an enthusiastic participant in my gentle/therapeutic class who left his body last year.  Sweet to see the rose still thriving.

Share

State of the Garden

The grapes are starting to bunch, and for the first time, the kiwi is covered with buds.  Two of the tomato plants have their first flowers.  Snow peas are climbing up the trellises.  Carrots, spring onions, radishes, and beans are sprouting.  There are plenty of cool weather greens and herbs for eating already.  The red roses are blooming.  I pray for sufficient rain.

Share

Today In and From the Garden

It is time to pay attention to the garden, to watch closely whether it will be a warmer fall or whether there will be an early frost.  Yesterday, there was a chance of temperatures in the mid-30’s F in the next few days.  Now, the first day below 38F (which is when I bring in the hardiest of the tropicals–they like to get nights in the 40s F, but not the 30’s F) is toward the end of the 15-day forecast.  I gambled that temperatures would stay warm enough until the next time I would be able to spend the hour and  a half moving plants inside.  It is best when I can do it on a weekend, but in a pinch I have done it first thing in the morning instead of my  regular practice before starting the work day.  I wait until the last minute because the plants are so much happier outside.  They don’t mind four months inside, they are ok with five, and they start really suffering at six months.  This means I watch closely danger of first and last frost to keep the plants outside as long as possible.

Some things, such as the impatiens and begonias that I was taught  by my paternal grandmother to bring inside as cuttings to root in winter and then replant in spring start struggling outside when lows are steadily in the 40’sF, which is why I did the cuttings today.  The tomatoes are still producing, so I have not yet switched the raised beds from tomatoes to hardy greens, but the seeds I planted when I pulled up the peppers and the eggplant are starting to come up.

Today’s harvest included:  Cherokee purple, roma, and cherry tomatoes, green beans, baby butternut squash, thai hot chili peper, white and orange carrots to eat now; sweet herbs to dry for infusions–stevia, licorice mint, lemon balm, lemon verbena, spearmint.  Coming up:  spinach, chard, turnip greens.

 

Share

This Week’s Garden Highlights

Basil, persimmon tomatoes, plum tomato, saqweet banana pepper, turenip and greens, tricolor carrots (the white are maturing much faster than the orange and the red), anaheim peppwer, okra, jalapeno pepper. (Not shown: grapes, kale, and the three cucumbers I had midweek, one of which still needs to be eaten).

Peace and light, E — Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.

Share

Some Highlights From This Morning in the Garden

Included in what is not shown:  the tomatoes I ate before I brought the camera outside and the herbs I used to flavor the salads I made for dinner.

Share

What’s For Breakfast?

Snowpeas, tri-color beans. Peppers. Cherry tomatoes, basil (blueberries and strawberries did not make it out of the garden).

A student asked me the other day why I garden–was it to save money, he asked, was it for better tasting food?

It does save money to grow food and food eaten straight out of the garden is a foodie’s exquisite pleasure, but those are not my primary motivations.

I garden for the delight it brings through all of my senses and for the joy of knowing that the garden never questions nurturing. The more I give the garden, the more it gives back, without question or judgment.

I garden for the sense of relationship with the deeper seasonal patterns. To experience at an intimate level the impact on health and thriving of variations in seasons, light, heat, and rain.

With the drought and extreme heat in our area, the garden is struggling. Peppers are fruiting before having gotten tall and full. Cucumbers are yellowing and drying, though a couple have grown large enough to eat. There is a surfeit of kale, but the snow peas, which prefer cool weather, barely had time enough to grow enough to flower before it was too hot to thrive.

Part of the reasons some recipes have many ingredients is because they are premised on there not being enough of any one thing to make a meal. I am getting a few servings of vegetables every day, but the blasting heat is preventing the kind of abundance for some things I might have in another year. The grapes, though, may be outrageous; they like this crazy heat.

I want to be conscious of these challenges and serendipities. I want to know how I might need to change and adjust to thrive in a world that is ever more out of balance. I garden because it helps me be aware of crisis and challenge, but always and first providing extraordinary pleasure and beauty.

Peace and light, E — Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.

Share

It Does Not Get Much Better (and Satcitananda)

The key concept of yoga–satcitananda can be elusive, like all abstract concepts in the yoga philosophy and in other philosophies or areas of study. We are given metaphors and analogies in the texts to help us recognize when, through our practice, we experience in our self the manifestation of what had just been theory (book knowledge).

It is hard to describe, for example, what it truly means to be fully present and aware in the moment and thus suffused with bliss
(satcitananda).

There was a moment, standing in the hot sun, when I tasted a sun-warmed, perfectly ripe blueberry that I thought, this is a moment many of my students might imagine to be able to extrapolate the abstract concept of satcitananda.

Notice also the volunteer purslane at the base of the blueberry bush. Weeding and harvesting greens for salad and stir fry can be coextensive. Don’t poison or discard your purslane (or your dandelions). Pick it and eat it; purslane is a great plant source of omega fatty acids.

Peace and light, E — Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.

Share