On My Plate: Ready. Set. Grow!

By Becky Hadley-Cutright

We’ve had a lot on our plate this week! On Saturday I planted our tomatoes, basil and strawberries. Each was planted in their own, huge pot. Luckily our backyard gets a lot of sun, so these plants are poised to do very well.

On Sunday we got two of our four raised beds planted! Collards, sweet onion, garlic, carrots, lettuce, green onion, broccoli, and cabbage are in and now we just wait for Mother Nature to do her thing! We also started seedlings of both sweet and hot peppers inside and something I’m very excited about: our potato tower!

The potato tower is made out of reclaimed (free!) pallet wood, unstrung burlap, string (to keep out our pups), compost, and eyes of some old purple and red potatoes (thanks to our friend Molly for the eyes). The idea is this: hammer the wood into the ground and make a circle (The Hubs sawed off one end of each of the stakes diagonally so that they could be easily hammered into the ground). In the middle throw down some compost and then add the eyes on top. Add a little more compost. Then cover the mixture with the burlap. Hose it down with water and that’s it! As the leaves from the growing potatoes start to poke out of the burlap, you repeat the original process of compost, eyes, and burlap, and you keep doing that until the leaves have grown above the stakes of the tower. When the leaves start to die, it’s ready to dig up your potatoes!

Here are a few things to chew on this week:

Food: It’s getting warmer in St. Louis, but I couldn’t help making some homemade black bean soup on Monday. I just polished the rest off today for lunch. Here’s the recipe. I added tabasco sauce and lime juice for extra flavor and next time I’ll probably amp up the spices. But it’s so easy and healthy/yummy.

Health: Ever heard of Spirulina?

It’s a blue-green algae that springs from warm, fresh water bodies - and it's a superfood! It contains lots of toxin-removing bodies and is nutrient-rich. I put half of a tablespoon in a cup of hot water each morning and sweeten it up with Splenda or honey. Learn more about Spirulina here.

Homestead: We love reclaiming items we need – it doesn’t get much better than free! Plus, it cuts down on waste like a boss. Earlier this week The Hubs and I reclaimed a BUNCH of lumber from the set of one of Webster University’s plays. When the set was removed the lumber was left out by the dumpster. The Hubs and I took it ALL for the chicken coop we’re going to build.

The Hubs thinks we got at least $80 worth of lumber, if not more, for totally free. Have you reclaimed any items lately?

1 comment:

  1. You're pretty much the best Becky. Let me know if you need me to take any fruit, veggies or eggs off of your hands!