Fall garden 2011

We planted today, returning home exhausted, and covered in dirt….

My new life.

This community garden doesn’t charge for a plot and water is supplied by the city. Wow. On top of that, when we went by the local nursery, Stateline Nusery, they donated a car full of plants to the community garden claiming the plants would be dead by the following week and they wanted someone to get use of them . This is the second year they’ve done this. Last year, they supplied an entire trailer full of flowers and vegetables.

This means almost everything we planted was virtually free, along with the compost of rhino and zebra poop used to fertilize the dirt–supplied by a private zoo in Yulee, FL. Talk about free food.

Our two plots.

As soon as we arrived in town, we inquired into the community garden. As new gardeners, it’s a way to gain a wealth of information from experienced gardeners and a great way to meet the locals! It’s also in my plan of growing my own food to exclude wasteful packaging and harmful chemicals, so that I can use them in my G.I. crockpot blog! But little did we know just how opportunistic it would prove. They asked me to serve on the steering committee, and we’re already making friends with the gardeners beside and behind us.

Today, a sweet woman with an enormous flower garden shared plant leaves from Taiwan with us. She told us how to sautee the leaves with garlic, and bacon. If we liked them, we could  pick them from her garden any time we liked, as it grows in abundance and she has more than enough. She told us to enjoy our meal and rode off on her bicycle.

I looked at my husband and said, “Wow. I think I’m really going to like this place.”

My manly gardener.

Since we didn’t have any pork thawed, we used extra garlic, chopped onion, and balsamic vinegar to give it some flavor and served it over whole wheat couscous as a side to our dinner of the Filipino national dish of milkfish. We sat on the back porch in the cool air after a two-hour nap. It was the perfect ending to an exhausting day. I don’t know when I’ve been happier.

A special thanks to the colorful gardeners of St. Mary’s Community garden and our new found friend  who shared her food with us–and whose name I do not yet know!

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11 responses to “Fall garden 2011

  1. Sounds and looks great Jenn! Welcome to your new home!

  2. Wow! That’s awesome! Community gardens are awesome, what did you plant??

  3. sounds wonderful. Do you know what the leaves are called? I’d like to try them

    • Joddle,I have not seen the woman at the garden lately to ask her. I might clip one and take it home and try it find it on the internet. It would be easier to ask her! She’s usually there on the weekends. I’ll find out for you! They were good. I felt healthy just chewing them! 🙂

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  6. We planted a whole slew of vegetables. We planted green cabbage, collards, mustard greens (it’ll be our first experience with these!), what appears to be swiss chard although we were told they were mustards, radishes, carrots, leaf lettuce, spinach, and two pumpkins. There were also four mystery plants that look suspiciously like radishes, but aren’t quite as red. Turnips perhaps?? Everything is looking great except the two pumpkins, even the cabbage we thought we were going to lose has perked up and is doing rather well.

    Today we’re going to put down grass clippings to keep the weeds down and keep the plants from getting beat down during a rain squall that would cover the leaves with dirt. Basically we’re swapping out the wood chips for grass since grass will break down faster. If I missed anything, I’m sure Jenn will set the record straight!

    • No sir, you got it all. I got a little swamped with the garden and fell behind on email. Since my husband posted this, the pumpkins have perked back up. We’ve lost 1 cabbage, 1 spinach and one of the mystery plants. Everything else is looking good!

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