Planting season

It’s about that time again. The pollen is running rampant. The birds are singing. And, it’s planting season. I know there are a lot of people that don’t give it a second thought, but I happen to LOVE planting season. Some people smoke, some drink or gamble; I plant. I’m beginning to think my husband dreads taking me to Home Depot with him because I have yet to leave without buying some new plant or seeds. Some people have a certain crop they plant and that’s it. I plant any and everything I can fit. It’s a sickness, however I don’t know of any planting rehabilitation facilities. As far as I can tell, they don’t exist. So I will be stuck in this seasonal hamster wheel.

I’m working with a much smaller plot this season, so I will have to make the most of my space and plant only what we can eat or can. I’m enjoying the pickles I canned last year. I’m using them with the sandwiches I make for lunch along with lettuce from the lettuce box I got at Home Depot. It’s perfect because I am an empty nester and it just makes sense to only take off what we need so we aren’t wasting lettuce. It’s still early in the season and so far we only have lettuce and spinach ready to use. We are just starting to get tomatoes on the flowering tomato plant we bought. We still have tons of herbs we dried before we moved from the farm. I’ve got dill, rosemary, oregano, basil (the cilantro didn’t do very well and neither did the thyme)and we’ve about used all the mint for mint tea. I still saved a mint plant to bring with me and we bought a few more to keep it company. I’ve become a fan of drying vegetables. I have a lot of dried peppers from last year. This year, I would like to dry zucchini, carrots, tomatoes, onions, etcetera. I place them on a non stick cookie sheet and place them in the oven on a low temperature (200 or less). Sometimes it will take all day sometimes 2 days to dry. I’m looking into investing in a food dehydrator this year. It’s easy to pack away and store dehydrated veggies, and they weigh a lot less and take up less cabinet space than canning. Don’t get me wrong, I still want to make a few jars of preserves and can some veggies as well. I would like to have the dried on hand for soups and stews.

It’s all a classroom. I had help from my mother in law who taught me how to can. The pickling was the first thing I did on my own and they’ve turned out very well indeed. This city gal is learning how to navigate her country life.

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