Power full

It can sneak up on the innocent and the guilty in a silent, enigmatic manner. It builds up over time, much like the dust bunnies under my bed. POWER, it may be real and as hard as steel but also virtual and only perceived as being a strong force. When combined with love, it can stand in harm’s way as intercessor….hmmmm.

As a parent, I decided early on that I did not trust those in power who arranged childcare for me…one was in a house that had ash trays the size of wash basins in each room and another time and place it was with someone who used alcohol to calm her fears. Steve and I terminated our work earlier than expected, due to the emphasis on our children being in boarding school across the border in the next country over. I weep inside over the harm we cause our littlest ones – wherever they come from. Power.

This all has a connection to farming…..no time to ponder troubles. Nutrition, what we power our bodies with, is a key factor in the life we will be able to lead. I know, I know – I am on repeat – repeat. But it is true and the majority of ears need it stated in a different manner since the message isn’t lodging in the wisdom section between the hearing apparatuses. Power.

Do we live for the moment or is there thought for what life will be like in 20 years down the path we have chosen? Will the world’s children gather around and call us blessed?

Our hope is that tables are always welcoming the stranger and everyone can enjoy this week’s shares: salad mix, head lettuce, romaine, kohlrabi, garlic scapes, garlic scallions, green onions, kale, cucumbers, and TOMATOES!

 

Twist and hug

Gibbons were my playmates when home on vacations. The ‘gazoopwa’, as they were known in the Karen language, had a wire that connected them from our house to a gigantic tree in the front yard. They would zoop down the wire on their pulley and chain as soon as we arrived with any sort of munch to share. We braved the tree a couple times to join them in the safety of the huge branches. The ‘tree’ was actually a strangler fig which had surrounded the original tree and squeezed out most of its life.

Cucumbers have a less invasive way of reaching the sunlight; their tendrils swing around until they touch something and then they change internally and hug whatever they come in contact with. We wind a cord around each cucumber vine and snap off their tendrils so they don’t become a massive jungle. I wonder if cucumbers are a little less scrumptious without a twist and a hug? Ours are magnificent, but maybe ……

This week’s farm share will be full of hugs and twists since we pick everything by hand! Salad mix, green onions, rhubarb or kale, kohlrabi, head lettuce, cucumbers, garlic scallions, garlic scapes, and a choice of herbs: mint, lovage, oregano or lemon balm.

 

Warbling

Each morning I wake up to a very complicated tune of rapid notes – a warbling vireo has taken up residence. I’ve never seen the little bird, but it sure has a song that I am unable to sing. I hope the winged folk are paying attention and can decipher its meaning.

I’m a warbler of sorts. Yes, I do like music and hum or sing when life is weary or most exciting. But more than that, I’ve been in the business of encouraging good eats for a very long time – about 40 years and growing! What one chooses to munch on to satisfy hunger is now deemed the single most significant factor for disability and premature death – imagine! The tune is basically the same: focus on unprocessed foods, (Jubilee) fruits and vegetables, plant-based fats & proteins, legumes, whole grains and nuts. (from the Journal of the American Academy of Family Physicians, June 2018)

I could add many more complicated stanzas, like the early morning melodies that greet me, but I’ll leave that for another time and place.

So….twiddle dee dee doo – farm shares will receive a salad mix from one-cut lettuces, a choice of asparagus or spinach for minis, choice of one from: green onions, rhubarb or romaine, and a choice of either kale or kohlrabi. Shares should get one of everything. We have a sage plant for everyone.

Consider the lilies of the field

Lilies of the field, wildflowers or weeds are usually quite spectacular if one gets down nose to nose. They are survivors growing in the rough. The Good Book tells us to consider the lilies of the field in detail, which I’ve been doing a lot of lately. There are some that I wish would pull up their roots and find another home. This world likes to have green clothes on; bare soil, rocky ground, cement patches all have ‘lilies’ reaching up to the light for energy and going deep for sustenance.  Hmmm

This day has enough worries of its own and I’m sufficiently dressed. We work hard on this little patch of earth and I can get a bit grumpy at life that just seems to exist, thorns and all. We are considering the plum curculio and its nasty habit of laying eggs in apple blossoms – tree lilies. Surround or kaolin clay is mixed with water and sprayed over the tree giving it a prickly look to those visiting weevils. The sharp clay crystals are only visible to insect eyes so the idea is that the flowers were pollinated and at first petal drop we start in with the white spray for 6 weeks. If there is one good apple in the fall to share, we will have improved by 100% – hey ho!

We plan to take a walkabout for this evening’s cooking class and to consider the lilies of the field – some are actually most tasty in their infancy rather than in the flower of their final days. Much of the what the world chooses from its wardrobe is eatable – quite amazing actually. Of course, there are some inappropriate choices – like me in a snowboard jacket and pants about now – haha.

Farm share members will have a large salad mix, spinach, asparagus, rhubarb, radishes, Hakurei turnips and green onions to plan their meals around this week. Kohlrabi are just around the corner. We hope to plant potatoes today?!

Take time to consider this day and the lilies that surround us in the fields – or where there should be some….

Savory in dour times

Rhubarb roots were a highly sought-after medicine for thousands of years before someone thought of making a pie from the stalks. It was a spendy commodity due to traveling long distances via the Silk Road through areas that are in upheaval today. The leaves are poisonous, and that usually gives pause to kitchen creativity.

I like the idea of savory being ‘morally good’ as defined by Merriam-Webster. We seem to be stuck in a rhubarb patch with poison all around us…..but don’t forget the stems – they have savory options!

The next Make and Take class “New Ideas With Old Friends” will be cooking up some savory dishes with perennials, including rhubarb, loveage and others. They come back each spring just like old friends. The class is scheduled for Tuesday, May 29 from 5 to 6:30 pm.

There is a bounty of produce for farm share members this week: salad mix, spinach, Hakurei turnips, radishes, rhubarb, asparagus, chives and/or loveage.

Let’s aim to keep on the savory (morally good) side of life – always. I may get lost in the towering leaves but pull me back for a gathering around the table for a good munch.