Archive for the ‘Basil’ Category

Tater Time

I’ve been good. I’ve been waiting. I have exercised an extreme amount of self-control. But this week I could no longer help myself and I picked an entire bush worth of potatoes. I pulled the whole thing up. As of today, I had more control over myself and started “grabbing” potatoes, which is the practice of reaching through the soft dirt and feeling around for a potato or two and plucking them from the plant. I grabbed a  couple for my sister-in-law, who ate them for dinner tonight and described them as, “GOOOOOD.”

Yesterday’s haul in its entirety:

Right now, at this very moment, I’m waiting for water to boil so I can par cook some ‘taters. Then hubby is going to grill those ‘taters with olive oil, herbs (probably sage), salt and pepper. We’re frying up the Padron Peppers in the cast iron skillet then adding some sea salt. For desert, we’re having caprese salad, which we have had almost every Sunday night since the basil started growing and we are nowhere near tired of it. We’re to the point where we buy mozzarella from Costco. Maybe I should start thinking about making my own mozzarella. I’ve heard it’s not hard….

Fog

Redemption is feeling under the weather. All the Prunedalians are complaining that there’s been too much fog and cold this year and their tomatoes aren’t ripening. For me, this is a serious crisis. The plants are growing like crazy but last week we finally got the first two ripe tomatoes.

Note the buds and unripe fruit. This is very frustrating. The basil however, is growing wild. I had to cut it all back before it fully bolted. This resulted in an entire box of basil that I took to work in hopes of getting rid of it.

It has also resulted in eating caprese salad every night, something Dave is not at all upset about.

These unstaked plants are out of control. Because I didn’t stake them, they didn’t reach their full height of 8 feet but they have managed to sprawl to well over 5 feet. Some them have two inch trunks.

Can you see me in the sea of green?

The naked ladies, however, don’t care about the fog. They are a bright addition to the unripened garden.

I’m crossing my fingers for some sun or I’m going to be very sad. On the plus side, I won’t heave to learn to can!

Basil. How Do I Love Thee?

I could wax poetic about basil. I could go on for days. From the gardener’s perspective, it’s hard to grow. It’s fussy. It needs heat to germinate and heat to grow and it bolts quickly if you let it. But it’s worth every second. There are four kinds of basil growing in the Garden of Good and Evil and I love every one of them. We have…

Purple Basil- I think this might be the same as Opal basil. It’s mild and slightly sweet. It’s amazingly beautiful in a Caprese salad, especially if the tomatoes are a fun color like orange or yellow.

We have Red and Green Basil- Now, I will tell you, dear reader, that there may be a mix up on basil labeling. Actually, there is no maybe about it, there is simply a mix up. Sometimes this happens when you let kids help. Anyhow, this basil is purple but I’m certain it’s the red and green basil….

Lemon Basil- Oh lemon basil! How do I love Thee? I wish my entire life smelled like lemon basil. It is amazing. I think next year I’m going to do some research and make a room spray and a pet spray out of this. This little beauty is nestled amongst the leaves of a giant tomato plant…

And last but not least, Thai basil. At least, I think it’s Thai basil. Again, there was a labeling issue but Thai is the only kind that makes sense. Thai basil  has a hint of licorice and sweetness. Of all my basil plants, it’s the most prolific. Years ago, in Tennessee, I had a Thai basil plant that I grew year round through ice storms and summer heat. No one ever told that plant that basil dies in the winter. I suspect, this type of basil is more hearty than we give it credit for.