from the ground up

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‘Wee be little’ and friends

Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Muffins

Pumpkin Ice cream

Roasted Pumpkin seeds

Jack O’ Lanterns

Happy Halloween!



Goodnight Garden.

In the great green garden,

There was a flower bed

And a big red bloom

And a picture of

A clump of lavender with a sweet perfume

And there were three little boys making some noise

And one sweet girly

Waking up early

And a half buried glove

And a sun face above

And a pod and a seed and a bed with some weeds

And a quiet light breeze who was whispering “hush”.

Goodnight garden

Goodnight lovage

Goodnight the secrets hidden beneath

Goodnight light

And the red tomato

Goodnight bees

Goodnight peas

Goodnight dill

And goodnight chill

Goodnight rocks

And goodnight ‘hocks

Goodnight greenhouse

Goodnight mouse

Goodnight thyme

And goodnight beets

Goodnight nobody

Goodnight tweets

And goodnight to the golden leaves whispering “hush”

Goodnight seeds

Goodnight air

Goodnight gardens everywhere.

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Glorious garlic.

We’ve had stunning weather this week.  I wore a t-shirt, simultaneously warmed by the golden sun and cooled by just a hint of breeze.  Tap, tap, tap… leave tumbled down the street, just outside the garden.  By my side, my dedicated garden helper “excavated” rows for garlic.

We sourced our garlic from several places this year.  ‘Music’, is a hard neck variety with huge, plump, easy to peel cloves.  I bought it from a vendor at a local farmers market.  Tempted by the the huge cloves.

We also tucked in  ‘Gilroy’ a soft neck variety, and ‘French Red’ another hard neck variety.  They were gifted to me by my neighbor, a garlic connoisseur.

We tenderly planted the fragrant cloves into tidy rows. Dreaming of roasted garlic spread on sourdough bread and braids of curing garlic hanging in the kitchen.  And winter begins to consume us, until those tiny green sprouts surface once again.  Round and round the cycle goes.


If I were a fairy…

On many of our forest walks, we move….quite…s-l-o-w-l-y.  Little ones finding the magic in small things, mama with camera in hand.  A favorite game is If I were a Fairy. The following is narrated by my sweet and imaginative 5-year old, on a recent walk.

“If I were a fairy, these would be our mountains.”

“This might be an umbrella.”

“We could climb these cliffs.  Like rock climbers.”

“If we want to fly, we could use these.”

“We could drink nectar, like the bees do.”

“If we need firewood, we could collect this.”

“If I were a fairy, these would be my pipes for my sink.”

I am always so thankful for taking time to enjoy the quiet of the forest and all that it has to offer.  Even if we don’t get very far up the trail!

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Recipe Share: Arugula Pesto

Arugula! Pesto! This rivals traditional basil pesto in my kitchen.  But it’s a tight race.  This year,  I didn’t process nearly as much basil pesto as I have in other years.  Instead, I replaced a few batches with arugula pesto.  I can already taste the warm sandwiches, spread with a thick layer of tangy, spicy arugula.  Or the occasional dollop (or two…)  added to a hearty soup this winter.

Arugula Pesto

4 cups loosely packed arugula

1/4 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 to 2 cups nuts.  Walnuts, pecans, almonds, pine…the choice is yours!

3 cloves garlic, crushed

salt, to taste

parmesan cheese, to taste *

Layer ingredients in blender or food processor.  Blend until smooth, adding more olive oil as moisture is needed.

* I add the parmesan just before eating, for a fresher taste.

Eat a batch fresh! This recipe also freezes well. One cup in a freezer bag smoothes out flat for stacking.  Just break off as much or as little as you want for a slightly spicy addition to any recipe. Enjoy!

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Winds that bluster, winds that shout…

The last dear hollyhock has flamed his crimson glory out.

– On All Soul’s Eve, Faye Inchfawn

Common Name: Hollyhock

Latin name: Alcea sp.

Family: Malvaceae:  Mallow Family

Habit:   Full sun.  Considered a biennial and perennial.  Self-sows, freely. Can grow upward of 8 feet tall!  Mostly found in shades of pink, red and white.  But occasional oranges, peaches and some double blossom varieties may also be available.  Can be very deeply taprooted, which can lead to difficulty in transplanting.

Notes: Having trouble getting hollyhocks started in your yard?  Wondering why you’ve seen the plants growing in alleys and sidewalk cracks?  Here’s the secret:  Hollyhock seeds need light to germinate.  So, when the wind blows them into an alley or that crack in the sidewalk, they get lodged in an open, bright spot and poof, away they grow.  To grow hollyhocks in a desired location: take an entire stalk and lay it down where you would like them to grow.  This method allows the seeds to drop into the soil, leaving the stalks and leaves to protect the seeds an keep them from wandering away with the wind.

Fun Fact:  Hollyhocks are in the same family as cotton, Malvacea, and have been considered a potential source of fiber for cloth. Garden Flower Folklore by Laura C. Martin.

Hollyhock facts from Garden Flower Folklore by Laura C. Martin.