For decades, i’ve answered the age old pull and call on the human psyche to plant something in the spring. Despite my efforts, i’m woefully inadequate in the quest to feed my family and myself. However, even if i didn’t rely on others who are master gardeners, i could survive on what i can grow.
My family doesn’t eat much of what i can actually grow, so it is time to cut back. So much food already goes to waste in this country, there is no use me adding to the garbage pile (actually is fed to the chickens or composted).
I put up so many jars of apple butter last fall that i cannot even give it all away. Great strides were made in that effort, yesterday, at the Green Hills Farm Project annual winter seminar, but there are still far too many jars left on the shelves. I’ve appealed to Dallas to NOT LET ME EVEN PICK THE APPLES OFF THE TREE this year.
Anyway, since my fruit trees are getting a bit larger and my annual garden has been underneath them, it’s time to start pulling it in and let the fruit trees take over.
What will i plant this year?! Still considerable variety, but far fewer plants. I have way too much food stored that will not likely last much longer.
- Green beans – only enough for me to eat this year in stir fry. I plant these awesome long pole beans, but no one likes them except me, so i need to find a new variety to grow. Any suggestions.
- Squash and pumpkins – only 1 or 2 vines each – i have tons of seeds – actually, i just threw out a pile of seeds for the chickens to eat.
- Heirloom Tomatoes – enough for fresh salads and plenty to make Bright Red Catsup and pizza sauces. My top three favorites are Salvaterra’s Select, Amish Paste, and Hungarian Heart (Oxheart) plus i planted some Black Pineapple cherry tomatoes Allen’s ICU nurse (the bull encounter) gave me.
- Watermelons – a few more plants since each plant produces very little. I use Congo – very sweet though mine only grew to a small size.
- Herbs – catnip (for fun), lavender (because it’s pretty), cilantro (very tasty),
- Okra (Star of David) – because i like it and it’s easy to grow
- Cucumbers – Beit Alpha – extremely tasty for fresh eating
- Zucchini – only 1 or 2 bushes this year, i had to freeze up so much last year and i don’t want to do that again.
- Sweet Peppers – Sweet Chocolate
- Broccoli and Cauliflower – Calabrese and Early Snowball
- Peas – Amish Snap and Swenson Swedish
- Kohlrabi – great substitute for onions or celery and easy to grow. I’m using Early Purple Vienna but i may try something new next year.
- Lettuce is our favorite – I use a mix of greens from Seed Savers Exchange and hope to do a better job of succession planting – however, our hot summers put paid to this cool season crop.
- For fun, I’m going to plant a Queensland Blue squash and the seeds from a blue squash i purchased at Peter’s Market in Waverly, MO. I thought it was a Queensland Blue, but it may be a Jarrahdale.
What are your favorite garden items to plant?!