Spring time arrived early here. The balmy days that we experienced in July continued in August. Such beautiful days. We also had a few days of rain sprinkled in-between. The music muster is held in our area in August. That usually is the cue for rain!
Letting It Go To Seed
The warm days saw the coriander start to flower. The mizuna, rocket, and lettuce also followed suit. I did chop the tops of the coriander and rocket to try to stop them from going to seed (and so I could prolong my harvest) but in the end, it was an uphill battle.
One morning, I looked out at my greens patch and thought, hooley dooley, things have flowered overnight! I must say that I don’t mind rocket leaves when they have that strong almost bitter flavour. This happens to the leaves once the plants start to flower. I will finely chop a small quantity of these leaves and add them to cold brown rice and seeds for a simple salad. Or else, add them to a raw veggie salad for an extra flavour kick. One of my fave veggie salads is diced red capsicum, celery, grated carrot and parsley. Yum!
An important reason why I don’t mind letting these plants flower and then go to seed, is that they will attract pollinators to the garden. Giving back to our pollinator friends, and providing a food source for them is more than a fair trade I reckon.
I had sown ‘Colour Mix’ carrot seed a few months back. I usually try to grow a box of carrots for the kids. They love watching them grow and will often ask me when it is time to pull them up. This month, it was time to harvest some of those carrots.
They were mostly white carrots, they kind of looked like parsnips. With a large orange one amongst them. No purple ones. These home grown beauties were made into Marvellous Maple Carrots. A dish that does not last long at the dinner table!
I’m going through a beetroot phase. One of my favourite ways to enjoy this earthy root vegetable is to roast it slowly with garlic. I keep a container of these purple goodies in my fridge for a quick salad of greens, beetroot, and goats cheese.
The beetroot seed that I had sown was seed that I had at the bottom of a seed packet. I wasn’t sure that it would germinate but it did! Now that beetroot is ready for me to enjoy.
This poor beetroot was neglected as well. I didn’t water it as often as I should. Being in a polystyrene box, it probably dried out more often than not. So I’m extra appreciative of the beetroot crop. I have noticed though that beetroot seems to be tough. I also had a crop in my nature strip veggie patch. It too didn’t get much TLC but didn’t make me pay for that. It was bumper crop. I was giving beetroot away!
My black beauty capsicums turned red this August. I had left the capsicums on the plant for longer than I usually would. The result – brilliant red beauties. The flavour of these was sweeter than when I eat these capsicums black.
These capsicums plants kept producing all through winter. That is how I know that is was a mild winter here.
Keeping It Interesting
I have been using sorrel and nasturtium leaves as wraps. Inspiration struck as I was collecting some greens for a salad. A while back, I received an email from you, letting me know that sorrel-wrapped salmon baked in the oven, and served with a cherry tomato sauce was delicious. It sounded delicious however, I just hadn’t gotten around to creating this yummy sounding meal.
While I was collecting some greens, I remembered that I had smoked salmon in the fridge. I looked at the leaves I had collected and thought, I will turn these into wraps!
What went into my wraps? Cream cheese, salmon, coriander, nasturtium flowers, squeeze of lemon and a sprinkle of pepper. These were such a yummy afternoon treat. Because sorrel has a lemony flavour I knew that salmon would go beautifully with it. Don’t like salmon? The beauty about wraps is you can put anything that you like in them! I look forward to trying more combinations.
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WHAT HAVE BEEN YOUR AUGUST HAPPENINGS IN YOUR VEGGIE PATCH? WE WOULD LOVE TO KNOW! PLEASE LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.
Looking at saving your own seeds? Check out Learn To Save Your Own Seeds and Seed Saving: 5 Nutrient Dense Vegetables You Should Be Planting Now
Like to find out more about attracting pollinators to your garden? Then read this fascinating article, Attracting Pollinators to Your Garden. There is so much interesting information here from how pollinators feed, to what colour and flower shapes attract.