Thursday, September 10, 2009

"living off the fatta' the lan'" - the next generation

when last we spoke, my garden was in it's infancy. spring lettuces were young and tender, tomato plants had just been nestled in the earth, and the potatoes had not yet been planted. after three beautiful months of colorado summer, things look quite different. the broccoli, cabbage, and lettuces have now all been harvested, the tomatoes (as you'll see) are downright prolific, the herbs have all taken off, and the legumes, potatoes, and carrots have flourished.
pictured left: legume patch - purple bush beans, sugar snap peas, broad beans, and one ornamental gourd for good measure.

pictured right
: first of the "purple haze" carrots.

pictured below: harvest of "kennebec white" and "purple peruvian" potatoes.

while i'm truly proud of ALL of the offerings from my very first garden, it's the TOMATOES that have really impressed me this year. in what i've been told had been a "bad tomato year" here in colorado springs, our 12 tomato varieties have surpassed anything we could have hoped for. we've enjoyed tiny, sweet, juicy orange "sun sugar," pointy pink "sugary," mild but tangy "green zebras," plump and rich "black cherry," mild and bright "lemon boy," and the complex, intense, sexy "black from tula." the others (including "pineapple," "brandywine red," "lisa king," and "mortgage lifter") haven't fully ripened yet but all are bearing promising fruit.

because a picture is said to be worth a thousand words and because formatting text and pictures with Blogger is such a pain in the ass, here are some pictures of our produce bounty:
it was daunting at first and i still have TONS to learn, but this gardening year has already been more rewarding than i could have imagined. we're living on less than half an acre here (much of which is not plantable) and i think we've really gotten a lot out of what little area we have planted. i'm learning more every day and i just set some seed today for fall harvests of parsley, arugula, leaf lettuces, collards, broccoli, and spinach.
i'd eventually like to get to something much more organized, calculated, and productive (like a system reasonably close to what the Dervaes family has accomplished) but, for our first year gardening here, i could scarcely be happier.

gardening, like i've preached about in my previous vegan-hippie-tree-hugger posts, is another way YOU, yes, YOU can take a step toward self-sufficiency and away from the commercial food machine. dirt is cheap, seeds are cheap, water is relatively cheap (and sometimes free!), sunlight is free. homegrown food is fresher, more nutritious, tastier, cheaper, and more fun than what you'll find at the store. here is the Dervaes family to get you inspired:

there are tons of online resources, and, for you neo-Luddites out there, your local library is sure to have enough info to get you started growing on your own. take a chance - throw some seeds in the ground. you might be surprised at how much fun (and food) you get out of it.


~thorny appleseed

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Looks like it worked! Yay technology!

a test and an update

a test and a tiny update: i've just enabled mobile blogging from my cell and i'm hoping this makes it through space and lands where it's supposed to. that covered, this little guy is the first product from the zucchini plant that volunteered in our compost bin. i know i have been woefully remiss in my updates and i hope that this new mobile blogging capability will help remedy that least a little bit. later, ~thorns