Friday, May 15, 2009

Garden Square #1 and More on Bread

Here's a diagram of one of my 4x4 foot raised bed gardens:I filled this one up with things I could plant before the last frost. Most of the seed packets said "as soon as the soil can be worked". I think I was a little too excited about that little comment. If I'd been a bit more logical, I don't think I would have planted so many squares of Broccoli Raab and Sweet Peas. I've been wondering what the number of days on the seed packets means exactly. My broccoli raab, for instance, says 45 days. I had assumed that meant that was how long until you'd be eating it, but maybe it means something else entirely. My little 1 inch tall broccoli raab sprouts have some serious work to do in the next week if that's the case. And do you start counting the 45 days from the day you planted the seed or the day you first saw a little sprout come up or what? Something else for me to research. I'm on the fence between loving the mystery of not knowing when I'll have vegies and loving the idea of knowing when to expect them. In any case, I did the date math to figure out when to expect them based on the seed packet dates, so we'll see how accurate that actually is. I ordered most of my seeds from Seed Saver's Exchange in Iowa which I had read about in Barbara Kingsolver's awesome book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. (I just reread it. I love to read, and I read a lot, but this is the only book I've ever read twice. It's really what motivated me to start this whole gardening thing in the first place.) I'm looking forward to trying to save some seeds for next year. The Forellenschuss lettuce is especially cool, since it's one of the vegies in the U.S. Slow Food Ark of Taste. It's still quite small, but you can already see the pretty speckled markings. (I'll add a photo soon.) Back on the bread subject . . . Yesterday, I googled the book I mentioned, Bread Baker's Apprentice, so that I could include a link to it in the blog post. When I did that I happened to spot a site that was doing a Bread Baker's Apprentice Challenge. Wondering what that was, I checked it out, and it turns out a group of people are baking their way through the book - making one bread per week. Isn't that such a cool idea?! I thought about that for half a second then decided I wanted to do it, too. I just found out that I'm too late to officially join the group. Of course I can follow along anyway, but I'm not sure I'll do as well without the group pressure. I'm still going to give it a try. This weekend is Anadama. I'll let you know how it goes.

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