Summer can be brutal here in South East Queensland. The humidity saps your energy and even if you plan to garden early in the morning, it is a challenge. My patch turned into an edible jungle. February saw me not doing much work in the patch (similar to January!) but lots of foraging for food.
What Goodies did I Forage?
It is amazing what you can find once you start looking for it. I had just come back from Sydney and didn’t want to stop on the way home from the airport. I decided to forage in the patch that night. By doing so, I found all these wonderful goodies in the patch and had a healthy dinner!
Mizuna made an appearance in the patch this month. This would have been from allowing Mizuna plants to go to seed last year. This Mizuna plant was still young so hadn’t developed that intense mustardy kick.
Lemony sorrel added a refreshing flavour to my salads. Sorrel is a perennial and is a great plant to have. I have noticed that it doesn’t like waterlogged soil – I almost lost a plant after heavy rain. I just trimmed the sad looking dying leaves and the plant did come back. I have only ever eaten sorrel raw but it can be used in cooked dishes as well. I found a recipe for Sorrel Soup that I wouldn’t mind trying once the weather turns cooler. Another tip I read was not to cook sorrel in aluminium pans as the oxalic acid in sorrel will react with the aluminium and taste metallic.
After wondering if my squash plants would ever produce any squash, I was surprised with some baby squash. I missed picking one of the squashes and this developed into a large squash with hard skin. Squashes like this are better to roast.
Rocket was leafy green that made an appearance in the patch. Although when I say patch, I mean the path next to the patch. These were also random plants. They had grown from seed the wind had blown there. These seed came from rocket plants left to flower and then to go to seed. I love self sufficient random edibles 🙂
Rocket and Mizuna are considered cooler weather crops. Their appearance was a happy surprise. I have noticed that self seeded random plants have adapted to my local climate conditions.
Other goodies I foraged from the patch were cherry tomatoes, beans, curly leaf kale, parsley and eggplant.
This February I enjoyed my first home grown fig. I stood in my kitchen early one morning – just myself and this one fig. It was only small but it sure packed that sweet figgy yumminess.
There have been more delicious fig moments since that first one. But the birds also had their delicious fig moments. I do have a net but hadn’t put it up – so the birds enjoyed a fig feed!
The zucchinis on my plants were developing. But what would happen is they would start off fine then shrivel up. The zucchini would be all mushy. I thought this may have been blossom end rot after hearing someone mention it in relation to zucchinis .
But what I found out was fruit fly was attacking the zucchini. I cut open one of the affected zucchinis and saw maggots – yuk! I also noticed small sting marks in the zucchini. Fruit fly is a challenging pest to have in the garden. At this stage, I haven’t taken any measures against those pesky critters. I have used a bought fruit fly trap in the past and will consider this again.
I have been harvesting them while they are tiny to at least enjoy some zucchinis before they turn to mush.
Urban Veggie Patch
I visited a friend in Sydney recently. He lives on a boat. Just before the marina, there was a cool little veggie patch. This patch was full of herbs and greens. Goes to show that even in a small space, a lot can been grown.
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WHAT HAVE BEEN YOUR FEBRUARY HAPPENINGS IN YOUR VEGGIE PATCH? WE WOULD LOVE TO KNOW! PLEASE LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.
Like to know more about growing figs? Then check out ‘How to Grow and Care for Fig Trees.’