The garden has begun to wind down as far as growing goes. Throughout July, the garden nearly doubled in size and the work to keep up with weeds was an overwhelming task. Now that the plants are near full size, patience is the key as we wait for the fruits and vegetables to ripen. The leafy greens section is constantly supplying us with kale, collard green, red and green lettuce, and swiss chard. On top of this, we have been able to harvest peppers, zucchini, summer squash, and cucumbers. Last week, the sugar snap peas were finally ready to be picked. We went out and picked until we only saw little pods left and did not realize just how many came off of the ten foot row of peas. There were way too many for us to eat before they spoiled so we blanched and froze the extras.
With harvesting comes more ideas for delicious meals and treats. I have been using a combination of kale, collard greens, and swiss chard in stir fries while the lettuces stand great alone as salad. A few weeks ago, I shredded some zucchini and made a yummy pumpkin zucchini bread that Travis, another apprentice here at the farm, and I gluttonously devoured in a day. I helped Chris's mother, Bonnie, harvest raspberries from her garden and then we spent a few hours making the raspberry jam that we sell in the store. It was a great opportunity to learn from her and to create something that can be enjoyed by our customers and by ourselves, of course.
The positive energy that we use to work everyday ultimately produces the very food that we need to nourish our bodies. Having a garden is a great way to develop some food on your own and its really quite exciting even if it does require some extra work. The more time I spend here, the more I appreciate where my food comes from and how it's raised. I hope you are able to come out and see the garden before summer rushes to an end!