Friday, April 13, 2012

Perennial Herbs, Compound Butters

Chives and parsley are my early harvests from the herb garden. The thyme and rosemary are still woody and pungent and I'll be glad when their new growth begins.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Onions in the Bed

We built a garden this spring of eight raised beds, and I filled six of them with asparagus, strawberries, garlic, onions, and salsify. I'm deciding what to plant in the last two. Carrots, certainly, and perhaps leeks. We'll see.

Friday, April 6, 2012

By Natural Design

Mother Nature helped adorn the wall of our old cabin yesterday afternoon. The shadow is so powerful that I wanted to tear down my meager attempts at decoration. In a few weeks the pecan tree will be leafed out and the wall will be completely shaded, and I'm happy to share this glimpse of the season before it falls away.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Giving Deer the Boot

An old farmer out in the dessert of New Mexico gave me his secret for keeping the critters out of his garden and hen house and, for the past three years, it's worked for me: old boots nailed to the fence posts. This one has weathered to an artistic silver dustiness and probably has no aroma left, but I think I'll leave it where it is and just add a new one to the post. One of my friends just brought me a bag full of her husband's old work and hunting boots, so I've a good supply. I think I'll plant some tiny, trailing succulents in some of the old boots this year.

Friday, March 30, 2012

A Little Knitting

A few months ago the TSA confiscated my waiter's corkscrew, forgotten in a pocket of my purse. This past flight to/from Puerto Rico found me breezing through security with two sets of knitting needles. Someone would have to stand still for a long time for me to screw my corkscrew into some part of them, but I could put an eye out rather quickly with the knitting needles....or, for that matter, a simple ball point pen. Go figure the reasoning. Perhaps the TSA takes seriously the motto "I knit so I won't kill someone." 

Monday, March 26, 2012

How to Make Fabric Softener

Fabric softener is expensive and the scent can be strong and offensive, so when one of my friends gave me a recipe for homemade fabric softener I had to try it, and I'm thrilled with the results. It makes a very large batch so mix it in a gallon jug.

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Captain's Pleasure

Last week we sailed off the coast of Puerto Rico on a large catamaran with a group of friends. I don't like sweet drinks, so I asked a deck hand if there was anything other than the offered pina coladas and rum punch. He offered to make me something called "The Captain's Special." Because his accent was so strong, I thought he said "The Captain's Pleasure." I'm saving the recipe for this tropical libation under the latter, mistaken, but much more romantic, name. Combine the ingredients in quantities to suit your taste and garnish as you like. This is a very refreshing drink.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Great Gardening APP for Your Smartphone

I have a shelf filled with books about gardening, but I have found the Garden Guide App for my smartphone indispensable. It's offered free of charge from Mother Earth News, and here are some photos of what you see on your phone when you pull it up and the things you will find there:

Monday, February 20, 2012

Hello Again! (Herbed Chevre Spread)

Ever procrastinate something to the point that you suddenly look at the calendar and find out that it's been months since you last tended to that "something?" July 8, 2011 was my last post, so I guess I'd better get busy here and give you all some motivation for projects to take on this spring. You won't believe what I've been up to!