Sunday, May 20, 2012

More weekend fun...

This weekend started off gorgeously.

But mighty Nature bounds as from her birth;
The sun is in the heavens, and life on earth:
Flowers in the valley, splendor in the beam,
Health on the gale, and freshness in the stream.
Lord Byron

So it was a good day for harvesting!

Morning dew on the grass.

The Large things are beets, to the right is red and green leaf lettuce and spinach.

radishes ripe for the picking.

Pac Choi that seems to think it too hot to grow normal.

We caught a nice grub in the middle of its breakfast.

Lots of delicious edibles, now we just need to figure out what to do with the beets. Due to an ... well some sort of problem in her upbringing, my wife has never ventured far into the culinary fields. So beets have never been on the menu. I have never cooked them myself, so we have a slight problem. It's like long ago when George Washington Carver told everyone to plant peanuts to help out their fields, but then when the peanuts abounded, no one knew what to do! Well, we aren't quite so bad off because out neighbors like them and actually know what to do! A third to one, a third to another, and now the problem is manageable. My mom also sent us some recipes and you tube provided a few more ideas. We'll try one a night this week and see if we replant, or just plan on giving the rest to friends (of course we'll pretend we grew them just for them!)

On such a sweet day and with the latest Fine Gardening in hand, it is impossible not to think of what the next area of improvement will be. If you get this magazine, there is an article on making a smelly garden! or as they put it a fragrant pathway. I guess that does sound a little nicer. I am going to do my own version of this in the front yard near the front door so that we can have the nostril's delight come wafting into the house on nice days in spring, summer, and fall.

What I would appreciate, if you haven't just rushed off to start your own heavenly scented garden, (or fallen asleep reading my post) is to give me any recommendations you have on the below mentioned plants. Specific varieties for the PNW (majorly amended clayish soil, lots of rain, and zone 7-8) and even less specific will all be greatly appreciated. Also if you have any insider tips from the stable about care, planting, or even just success stories I would enjoy them as well. In advance, Thank You! (now you feel really obligated, I hope)

Chaste tree (this may be too large)
Sweet box (this might need more shade than I can give it though)
A steppable ground cover
Lilies of the valley (little ones to line the path)

Possibly also mock orange or choke berry.

These were a few ideas from the magazine...
Carol Mackie Daphne (I've heard Adora is supposed to be the most fragrant, but not seen it in action)
Bridal bouquet Abelia
Harlequin Glory Bower
Black negligee Actaea
Pink Dawn Viburnum
Miss Kim Lilac
Corsican mint ground cover

Hope your weekend was as pleasant, pleasurable, pleasing, playful, picturesque, and pretty as mine!


  1. Sorry I'm not going to be helpful with suggestions for your new project! I'm on the wrong side of the planet. I love the idea though. It would be a brilliant near your front door. Congratulations on your wonderful harvest too! Have your tried Roasted Orange and Balsamic Beetroot? Deeee ... licious!

    1. The roasted orange and balsamic beetroot sounds good! Do you have a special recipe? ( or is it on a website I could get? thank you

  2. Some sort of problem with her upbringing? Whaaaat? Like I wouldn't let her eat beets? Okay, I will eat all your extras, which apparently will be a lot. I love beets. Try them cut and steamed like you would carrots, a little salt, and butter if you want. Yesterday I told your wife, who was apparently denied beets in her childhood, how to cook them.

    1. It may have been due to too much reading and the romance of self denial, so she didn't eat what was most pleasant and wholesome (just pbjs). We tried the steam with butter and salt. I loved it, and even Mary said, "its not bad." which we know is extremely high praise. There may be some left over after our new craving is satiated, and we'll bring them down with some double cream gouda and maybe a good Cabernet or Syrah.

    2. You don't know how happy this makes me--the part about you loving the beets and Mary saying they're not bad-- and the part about you coming down with all that yummy stuff.

  3. I think I've only had beets maybe once in my life on a salad in a restaurant. I wasn't too impressed, but I'm thinking it would be better prepared differently. Maybe in a stew? I'm all about root veggies in a stew..

    A fragrant garden right by the door sounds awesome. I'm on the totally wrong side of the US to give advice for the PNW. It sounds like a fun project!