Saturday, March 23, 2013

The Tucson Winter Garden Prospers – Sweet Carrots!

Thanks to my neighbors and landlords Paul and Irene who watered while I've been away leading tours, my winter garden is thriving. I'm eating turnips, mustard greens, chard, and broccoli by the pound daily now. I'm not sure I'm even keeping up with the growth. The mizuna (spinach-mustard) is done, having bolted while I was in Costa Rica, and is now taking its place at the bottom of the newly-turned compost heap. I've resown a few things – more mizuna, beets, turnips, mâche (Feldsalat, corn salad, lamb's lettuce), and endive. The sweet peas are taking their time to come to age (I suspect the inoculant I used wasn't their preferred species of bacterium), as are the nasturtiums. They'll either bloom while I'm away in Jamaica, Borneo, or Indonesia next month or sadly succumb to the heat and dryness that's destined to come. Daily watering is a chore (and expense) I can hardly expect of my landlords. So I'll enjoy it while I can and plan better for next winter's garden.

New today are the 10 young sweet basil plants that I transplanted from sickly but cheap starts at the local Sprouts grocery store. Maybe they'll love their new home and bring some pesto my way.

Here are the carrots I had with my homemade hummus for lunch today. This is truly a miraculous vegetable if you think about it – some of its close relatives are deadly poisonous. Yet look at this. They were tiny seeds sown just below the surface just less then 5 months (and three tours) ago.

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