Less Noise, More Green: October 2013

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Winter Stores

My vegetable beds are getting bare. Summer veggies? So yesterday. Fall veggies? We’re eating something fresh every day, but there will be no new plantings, now that the garlic is in the ground, until the spring. Each year I wonder how long the food I have grown and/or preserved during the year will last into the winter.  I am not striving for complete self-sufficiency, but a dent in the amount of store bought food I have to buy would be great.  

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Peanut Harvest

We had our first killing frost Friday night. As I was backing out my driveway at 7:15 am on Saturday, I saw the frost and cursed myself for not getting all of my plants taken care of. Needless to say I have been attending to the garden this weekend and the project I am most excited about are the peanuts.

You may remember my war with the squirrels in the spring over who owned these peanut plants! I won the battle but was not ready to declare the victor until the plants had been harvested. Well, I call it. I WON!!! I outsmarted a bushy tailed rodent.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

What to do with herbs over winter

Here in Rhode Island we are in danger of our first frost this week and my attention has turned to the herbs I have growing in the garden and what to do with them over the winter.

I grow a mixture of annual and perennial herbs, mostly for cooking. The annuals are to be found in the vegetable beds, where they act as companion plants. The perennials are all in containers to keep their growth under control. Many perennial herbs can become invasive if left to grow unchecked.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

It's a Very Tim Burton Vegetable Christmas

I like Tim Burton movies for the art design, more than the story lines. While pulling up the last of the tomato plants I was struck by the sculptural quality of the dead branches, and it made me think if Tim Burton was designing a Christmas tree, it might look like one of these.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

New Providence Journal Blog

Just a short entry about an example of love I learned from my tomatoes.


British Food (with a New England twist): Apple and Cranberry Crumble

Art Girl made homemade vanilla ice cream. The perfect pairing.

Apple crumble is as British as apple pie is American. It was the first pudding (dessert) I learned to make. In fact, it was the meal I had to cook to get my Cookery Badge for Brownies (Girl Scouts). I remember practicing making it at home, then going to a lady's house in our village,whom I did not know, to cook it completely unassisted, while she watched and graded me. I was around ten years old. I was very nervous but I passed and got my badge.

Crumbles can be made with any fruit. The only adjustment needed would be the amount of sugar, depending on the tartness of the fruit, and the amount of lemon juice, depending on the tendency of the fruit to brown. In this version I added cranberries, which are native to New England, and are about to be in season. I love the sweet and tart marriage of the apples and cranberries.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Flowers in the veggie garden


 I have a new toy. Computer Man bought me a camera and I'm very happy with the photos I'm taking!  The Panasonic Lumix LX5 is a little point and shoot, but has a high quality lens and takes amazing macro shots.


All of these photos were taken in my veggie garden this week. For a garden that is supposed to be fading into winter, it is still incredibly colorful.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Fall Garden Update

The last month has seen a lot of changes in the veggie garden. Autumn is truly here now and the first frost date in Rhode Island is October 15th. Some plants have taken their final bow for the year while others are just getting going. The wild days of late summer are long gone and the beds seem much more sedate and manageable.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Backyard Alpacas and Fiber Arts

Look at this face! Toasty is two and loves Molasses, his Dad.

My friend Roda and I met years ago when our kids were involved with 4H.  This was at the start of my journey towards a more simple life and Roda was a wonderful source of knowledge and an example of someone already on that path. She has always loved and cared for animals and since I’ve known her, she and her kids have owned rabbits, chickens, birds, hamsters, dogs and horses. Horses are a special love and right now she has two miniature horses called Beau and Birdie, who are quite the pair.