It's almost gardening season, and...
We want to plant it all!
We want to plant it all!
Am I alone in this? (I bet not:)
Those seed catalogs showing up at just the right time is no accident.
If you consider how marketers approach sales,
it is no wonder that we are shown gorgeous tomatoes, luscious greens,
and savory herbs right smack dab in the middle
of the longest, bleakest, coldest winter days.
How much of each item does your household eat?
As your mouth begins to water while looking at the 32 varieties
of delicious corn on the cob, do just one thing for yourself.
Go get a black marker and at the top of the page
write how many pints and/or quarts of corn your family eats in a year.
Figure about 2 ears per pint (4/qt.)
Now comes the tough part - choosing which one or maybe two you want.
It's a torturous task indeed.
Do this for each item.
I find that each year I plant fewer and fewer items.
I don't mean fewer seeds.
The garden is still full. How? you ask.
In our garden, we have 4 plots and a round.
This year, I'm planting one whole plot of tomatoes.
Rather than 3-4 plants, I'm planning on about 10.
We use quite a bit of stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and enchilada sauce.
I have beed canning our stewed tomatoes for some time.
Last year, I think I got the tomato sauce down (thanks to a neighbors Victorio.)
And I have recently come up with an enchilada sauce recipe that we like so will now add that to the list of things we no longer purchase from the grocery store.
Another whole plot will be green beans.
Why do they taste so good?
We eat them fresh, cooked, canned, all yumminess.
Do you 'get' where I'm going here?
The other perk to this is that there are fewer seeds to save or purchase.
Though, I am improving my seed-saving skills, I still worry that I will inadvertently do something that will ruin the seeds.
This year I am going to try a small separate patch of seed carrots,
which will take two years.
My hope is that by refining our garden, I will be able to procure my own seeds
and have plenty of the things we like to eat.
I count seeds, canning jars/lids, and gardening items as part of the grocery budget - because they are after all, and it all adds up.
By growing, harvesting, preserving and procuring future food,
we decrease our reliance on foreign markets of questionable quality products.
We strengthen our own financial situation.
And we reap the health benefits of fresh organic produce.
As often is the case,
the simple solution can be the best solution.
Weather you grow a large garden to feed your family or a window box of herbs, you are doing something good.
Keep it do-able so you are continually encouraged
and not discouraged by too much or too many.
And now my friends, I have a perplexing question for you all~
Why don't they sell zucchini seeds individually like they should?
Just a thought.