East Sac Edible


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November 2014 Harvest Tally

DSC_0369Now that we are saying hello to December we can reflect on what happened in the garden in November. I pretty much lost steam in regards to my garden so not much to report. In November there wasn’t much to harvest but I have still been picking basil, kale, butternut squash, Hokkori winter kabocha, Trombetta squash, peppers, strawberries and lots of herbs like parsley, sage, and thyme. The herbs came in handy for Thanksgiving dinner. I’m not sure how I am still getting strawberries at this time of year but my daughter is enjoying them.

My total poundage for November (2014) is 27.06 pounds.

My total poundage November (2013) was 17.41 pounds.

My yearly total is 369 pounds.

DSC_0370If I can suggest one piece of gardening advice it is to grow your own herbs. They are so easy to grow and are pretty much “set it and forget it” plants. When not much else is going on in my garden at this time of year, my herbs still look great. Plus they are perfect for adding to Thanksgiving dinner. I used thyme and sage for my Vegan Mushroom gravy, and parsley and chives to add into mashed potato pancakes. Plus throwing a few herb plants in the ground is economical. Take sage for example. My one plant provided me fresh leaves for Thanksgiving dinner plus some for drying. The plant cost me a buck whereas a small spice jar of dried rubbed sage from the store can cost you $5-6. Even for an herb that I don’t use that often, planting your own is a no brainer.

I was going to take pictures of my herbs for you but the last couple of days we have had our first REAL rain in over two years. We have had a few showers here and there but this storm reminded me of what fall storms are supposed to feel like. It is sad when you have a year and a half year old and they have NEVER experienced rain before. After a downpour yesterday and some puddle stomping, we enjoyed the most vibrant rainbow (although my pictures don’t do it justice). Happy rainy season!

 

 

 

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Drying Herbs: Thyme and Oregano

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Herbs are one of the easiest plants you can grow especially in small spaces. Once plants are established you can pick from them when you need small amounts. I much prefer cutting herbs from my garden than buying a bunch from the store only to use a small portion. Also store-bought herbs are expensive. Picking herbs right before using offers the freshest taste as well as smell.
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One of my favorite herbs is thyme. I love picking fresh thyme because it smells so delicious. Currently I have about 6 thyme plants around my garden. I have tried to grow thyme from seed without much luck. I have also grown thyme from cuttings from my dad’s plant. I just took some cuttings, put them in water for a few days until I started to see little roots then stuck them in some pots. This year I have bought a few established plants from the nursery because my seed starts did not transplant well. DSC_2893

Today I also picked some oregano to dry. I have two main oregano plants. One has been established in my herb bed for two years now. The other I started by taking some cuttings off the first plant and sticking them in the ground. This plant has done amazingly well and for little to no work! Two plants for the price of one! DSC_2894I have tied up the oregano and thyme bunches with ribbon to dry. I usually dry my herbs inside because I like smelling them as I walk by. Hang them up for a few weeks and then you can separate the leaves from the stalks to put in spice jars. This is an extremely economical way of having spices and much cheaper than buying dried spices from the store.