In the last few weeks two different friends have mentioned how our gut has it’s own nervous system and can function as a second brain. This research doesn’t surprise me one bit, as my stomach makes many decisions for me, although not all of those decisions are good ones. I decided to use my garden cookbooks as garden planning inspiration, and let my stomach decide what to plant this year.
“The Kitchen Garden Cookbook” by Caroline Bretherton was a gift from my friend Sarah, and is full of great recipes and tips for harvesting and preparing vegetables. My friend Amy gave me “The Speedy Vegetable Garden” by Mark Diacono and Lia Leendertz. Although this book is mostly about growing microgreens, sprouts and fast growing vegetables, it also contains some fabulous edible flower ideas.
So, inspired by some of the recipes in these books (tempered with some of my successes and failures from last year) here is what I ordered:
Borage – This one is for the bees (mostly). The cucumber flavoured leaves can be eaten in salads and the flowers can be frozen into ice cubes.
Kennebec potatoes – These were one of our big successes this last year and hopefully this year too.
Delphinium – Okay, so this isn’t something that you can eat. But I have had several dreams about delphinium so I think I should plant them.
Fortex filet beans (pole beans) – These were huge producers last year. I also have some bean seeds from my friend, so am not ordering any others right now.
Favas – I ordered a huge bag of these as I LOVE favas. Plus I want to take over part of my front yard with favas while I decide what goes there next.
Brussels sprouts (nautic) – I grew these a few years ago, and they worked out well…until someone’s dog ate them.
Esmeralda lettuce – This type of butter lettuce looks particularly appetizing. Broad green leaves.
Curly Cress Peppergrass – For sandwiches and summer salads.
Nasturtiums – salad blend. They always grow well and I eat a lot of these.
Echinacea – Although these aren’t necessarily edible, I want to plant something in the front yard that will last until the fall.
Zucchini – gold rush. Last year was a fabulous zucchini year and although I have a lot of “black beauty” seeds left, I want to plant a few different types this year to grill on the barbeque. Also, to try to prepare some of the blossom recipes…
Just realized that I forgot to order pea and calendula seeds. The recipe book has a recipe for a paella with calendula petals which looks fascinating, but not sure how it would taste…
Other seeds I already have on hand from last year: kale, lettuce, arugula, chard, fennel, spinach, beets and radishes.
Next fun late January task: planning where everything will be planted and when.
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Also, wanted to let you know (and feel free to post this) that I never thought of it before but…my stomach is in charge of what I plant! Revelation!! And I love what my stomach wants – tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, onions, garlic and herbs – Italian parsley, basil, oregano, lovage…and of course, all my fruit – figs, blueberries, blackberries, cherries, apples, pluots and pears. Of course, sitting here in 3 degree weather, I’m not sure any of my perennials or fruit trees will be talking to me this spring…but am keeping my fingers crossed!