While I’m sitting home sick and in a lull between planing and harvesting and floral gigs, I’ve been catching up on some reading. If I wasn’t too sick to move from the couch, I would definitely be out finding something sturdy to swing my hammock between so I could read outside. (You should be warned I’m obsessed with my hammock and will probably find many more opportunities to mention it.)
So, for the reading material:
-Borders has an awesome magazine selection (rivaled, at least in Portland, only by Powell’s books) where I found this fun wedding flowers mag. It’s aptly called “Wedding flowers: your expert guide to bridal blooms” for June/July 2010. It’s British, and is connected to this website (I recommend the “Real-life flowers” section). I loved their cute ideas, and that they included some ideas for doing things smaller and more affordable.
-While we’re renting and focused on potted gardens, we’re still a little obsessed with gardens and learning as much as we can about gardening before we have a yard of our own. My in-laws got wind of this and sent me a book they just found for my birthday. It’s similar to another one we’ve found, and I’m excited to actually read this one (I just got it, so I’ve only skimmed it) because we’re pretty sure this is a style/philosophy of gardening that we want to get in to. The book is “All New Square Foot Gardening” by Mel Bartholomew. His website is a little intense, so I suggest checking out the book.
We’ve spent past few Saturday mornings at the PSU farmers market. While I fully intend to try out as many of Portland’s markets as I can… I keep going back to the Hollywood and the PSU market. The extremely convenient locations I think are probably part of the big draw, as well as the familiarity that the Hollywood holds. The PSU market is quickly becoming familiar, but I feel like I could visit there every weekend of the summer and still have more to try.
With hours of 8:30 – 2, open March through October, you’d think it was possible to get a taste of everything, but not only the market huge, but the vendors are all so delicious looking! I just wander around looking and sampling and taking it in.
The PSU Farmers Market is located at Portland State University in the South Park Blocks between SW Hall & SW Montgomery. After being a student at PSU, parking on a weekend in the summer doesn’t actually feel that terrible, and there are always lots a few blocks away if you dont want to parallel park
I’m so torn on this! Chocolate mint looks a little taller, but Habak looks possibly fuller? If we’re judging by which herbs are crowding out others, both mints win – I had to start harvesting just to keep the chives alive.
Who do you think’s the winner?
[I also had to post a photo of my apple tree... I have 5 apples just as beautiful as this! So exciting... I hope they are able to fully mature this season.]
The amazing creativity and deliciousness of our local farmers/growers/bakers around Portland never cease to amaze me! A bunch of sugar pea tops/flowers, and some Thai flowers for a stir fry caught my eye and I couldn’t say no… such delicate, pretty things that are also edible? and I never even knew the existed? I’ve been missing out! Food texture is just as important to me as flavor, and almost anything can win me over if it is fun and looks beautiful. The Thai flowers tasted nice and slightly sweet and lemony; the pea tops basically tasted like broccoli. But I like broccoli.
We just dropped the stems, leaves and flowers in the wok with some garlic, soy sauce and oil – simple and delish.
The leftover buds I added to one of my favorite vintage vases. I particularly love the tiny curly-cues.
As a renter without a yard, I’ve invested in a few pots and various types of edibles that are pot/deck/patio/porch/balcony happy. My two year old columnar apples were getting lonely, so this year we bought some herbs.
I have a tendency to want to buy EVERY herb at the nursery… somehow we managed to finally narrow it down to three: chocolate mint, habak mint and chives. (I like chives for their lovely petite flowers, especially.)
I have happily spent the last two saturday mornings at the Hollywood Farmers Market basking in local honey, pesto, bread, asparagus, and the coveted early strawberries (and flowers, of course).
I have been so excited for May and for the season of farmers markets – and I know I’m not the only one: who is not excited for fresh, local produce and flowers, really? Don’t get me wrong – I love grocery stores, but there is something so natural and inspiring about an outdoor local market – fresh air, fresh food, dirt. It’s like a chance to be actually be actively living in a community, and supporting one another… talking to farmers who are passionate about their pesto? I can’t resist it.
So here’s the thing: this Saturday is the opening of the Hollywood Farmers Market. And I am out of town. So sad! And I was so looking forward to sharing ideas and photos of edible arrangements.
Please go shopping for me?
I spent the afternoon yesterday walking the neighborhood around N Mississippi ave, and admiring the many home gardens. If you have even a small yard you can plan so much food (trying hard not to covet)! But! even without a yard/garden/etc, there are still some options for growing things outdoors.
Edible has always intrigued me.
I’m a picky eater, yes, and am often more concerned with texture than flavor, but I love trying new things – I am all about presentation: if it looks incredible, I will be more excited about eating it. As a kid I loved the freedom and adventure of going out in the backyard or woods and knowing about plants I could eat. We grew wild strawberries, among other things, and I loved searching the yard for a couple of fresh, sweet bites. I love that some plants have both traditional edible parts as well as other more unusual parts that can also be eaten. Garlic, for example – delicious in bulb, and incredible in flower! Plants with edible flowers make my day. Continue reading