What have you done today to lower your impact?

We are washing away the foundations of our existence on every front. It is high time we move from crashing about on the planet like a bull in china shop and find a way to go forward with intent. We must find systems of living based on sustainability. The systems and tools exist, it is up to each of us to adopt them.

Friday, 9 September 2011

Wrapping up the summer garden. Winter seed ordered. Finally!

At last we have placed our order for our winter seed and bulbs from Territorial, Multiplier Onions (somewhat of a perennial way to grow onions apparently), Elephant Garlic (to add to the two other types of winter garlic already due for shipment in October), shallots, two kinds of fava beans (an edible nitrogen fixing cover crop that will also grow tall enough to function as a privacy screen when almost all else is bare), an ancestral purple carrot, broccoli, and rutabaga. We've already planted lots of brassicas (collards, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts), parsnips, turnip, turnip greens, beetroot, radish, and a fresh crop of mammoth red clover as a cover crop on a new layer of soil in the experimental bed. We also found more blueberries, grapes and kiwis on sale at Lowe's garden center which will need to go in the ground before frost as well as a tea plant and a fig tree. There is parsley, stevia and chamomile to prepare for the greenhouse. Recently we've dried basil, mint, lemon balm, stevia, and the tobacco is drying upstairs. We've canned over 20 quarts of tomatoes in addition to having eaten at lest that much fresh, frozen two quarts of tomato sauce, and are halfway through eating three quarts of salsa. We've frozen about a quart of pesto and there are heaps of basil left in the garden. The garlic, onion and leeks were extremely successful but are almost gone now. The pumpkins are harvested early due to the stink bugs (the little buggers left us with only one butternut squash!) we've 3 or 4 watermelons left to eat and a few more still growing. We've eaten about 6 big and delicious cantaloupes and there is one more still growing. The grapes were tasty but not prolific, the nettle, lambs quarter, NZ spinach, sorrel and chard were prolific but under utilized. All our fruit trees are still too young to bear and the blueberries too only produced a handful as they are still small. With lots of green beans to eat and lots blanched and frozen, we have fab greens for winter usage. Also frozen are several bags of cabbage and collards which produced surprisingly until the end of July! So all in all the spring and summer planting was successful. A beautiful six foot turmeric plant is in flower as shown in the photo! We will probably leave this in the ground hoping that after the winter it will sprout again.

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