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Monday, May 21, 2012

How Does Our Garden Grow?

Well the seed experiment was a SPECTACULAR failure. Not one little seed pod produced a seedling that went into the ground. Oh yes seedlings were produced...but only a few grew to a size of any substance and sadly those brave few withered and died before joining our little garden plot. I blame a pregnancy, a newborn, a lack of sunlight and poor weather. I certainly had nothing to do with it.

So we did what any other suburban homesteader would do and headed to Pike's Nursery. 


What a lovely place. Walking their gorgeous aisles full of annuals, perennials, vegetables and herbs in early spring is enough to convince even the blackest-thumbed novice that with enough money, dry and dusty garden beds can be transformed into lush paradises of color and texture.

We went. We saw. We bought. 

So far everyone is growing up and getting along just fine. Tomatoes, peppers, lemongrass and thyme. Stevia and mint, cucumbers and squash. Lavender! Oregano! Basil and marigolds too! We may have been a bit optimistic.


The Squirt LOVES to pick and eat the mint and stevia leaves while we're playing in the yard...Sweet B just likes to pick and pull indiscriminently. She plucked our first tomato, its young life still ahead of it, without warning one day. You'd have been proud of me, I only cried a little.


I'm looking forward to trying the stevia as a natural sweetener in my morning coffee, putting up lots of basil pesto for the fall/winter months, popping the sweet cherry tomatoes into easy dinner salads and of course making mojitos aplenty with our prolific supply of mint.

I'll leave you with our new favorite mojito recipe...because most everyone can grow mint. And if you can't for some reason, come grab some of mine, it's everywhere.

The Perfect Mojito (Serves 1)
10 mint leaves
1/2 lime, cut into 4 wedges
1 cup crushed ice
2 oz white rum
2 oz simple syrup (equal parts sugar & water)
1/2 cup club soda (tonic water can be subbed in a pinch)

Place mint leaves and 2 lime wedges in a sturdy glass. Use a muddler (or a pestle) to crush the lime and mint and release their juices/essential oils. Add 1lime wedge and the simple syrup and crush again. Fill the glass almost to the top with ice, pour the rum over the ice and fill glass with club soda. Taste and add more simple syrup if you desire. Garnish with your remaining lime and a sprig of mint.

Happy Gardening!

 
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