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A Gardener’s Diary: More sun makes for better salads

Shift in weather produces more green eats from garden

Not long ago the plants needed sun and we had too much rain. Suddenly the weather made a big turn and it is very hot and plants need water. Within a few days, the rain barrels went dry and I only have a few containers of water left and placed next to plants that require more watering. By next week I may have to use the tap water.

The raspberries were beautiful, big and sweet due to the spring rain. The everbearing are just starting to produce now. The same spring rain made a mess of the cherries. The tree didn’t have a big crop compared to other years and with all the rain, we didn’t bother with the Kootenay cover. The birds had a good feast and I harvested a few good ones just enough to make a cherry cobbler. Most of them had worms so I picked the whole tree and what was on the ground and it went for the trash.

Next year…

The peas kept on going and even the sweet peas are still blooming but not for long. I had my first tomato on July 14, which is a bit later than usual.

One fact about tomato plants I found is true: tomatoes started later will catch up to the earlier ones in no time. I cannot see the difference from the early ones and the ones started April 6.

I made a salad the other day and added some carrot leaves in it and some weeds like purslane which is a bit juicy and crunchy at the same time. I added some small Swiss chard and beet leaves. There are so many vegetables that are entirely edible from the roots to the leaves.

People grow turnips and rutabaga mostly for the roots but the leaves are edible. Some of the leaves have more health benefits than the root itself. diynetwork.com/how-to/outdoors/gardening/growing-rutabaga-greens

Radishes are another example. You can eat the leaves, roots and if you let some go to seeds, you can eat the young pods which taste just like the radish itself. In the summer, when radishes don’t grow very well, the pods will do just fine in a salad or in stir-fry. thecuriouscoconut.com/blog/how-to-cook-radish-greens-delicious-easy-nutritious-paleo-aip-keto-vegan

For a long time, I discarded the carrot tops until I found out they are also edible. vegetariantimes.com/recipes/what-do-i-do-with-carrot-greens

Same goes for onion tops. Even the roots if washed properly can be used in cooking. You can even regrow onion tops by putting them in water. healthyeating.sfgate.com/parts-green-onion-can-eat-8881.html

Of course, I would recommend organic vegetables that you grow yourself or buy at the farmer’s market or labelled “organic” because you don’t know what has been sprayed on the plants you purchase at the grocery store.

If you want to look further and find edible weeds that you may have in your yard:

youtube.com/watch?v=BVp2fi2qUf8

These are only a few websites. Just ask Mrs. Google (she knows everything) and you can find a lot more. Your salads will be richer for it.

For more information: 250-558-4556 jocelynesewell@gmail.com

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