Monday, September 22, 2008

This One Time, KL Said...

Early in the Spring of this year, my great friend and fellow organic gardener Agent K from Katie's Calamities was perusing slash drooling over my new garden site.

Ordinarily a "new" garden site is not so great, unless you lasagna-layered the poop and dry leaves and peat moss until your wheelbarrow tires went flat along with your desire to ever garden again. It takes years for the soil to get where you wanted it, at least in our clay-prone area.

But this year, I had a new garden. And as freshmen go, it was pretty cool. A little understated, with just enough personality to promote it for next year.

Also it was meant to be. Mother Nature works in mysterious ways: In February a huge Maple tree split in half under a snow load, leaving my husband with several weekends of chainsaw fun and me with a sunny new spot for raised beds. Building the beds took another four or five weekends of back-breaking work and a borrowed tractor. I contributed mostly by providing lunch.

Yeah, back to K's jealousy. It takes a lot to turn her green thumb green with envy, and I planned right at that moment to savor it for at least a few years. Her acre-and-three-quarters was tended for 20 years by a Master Gardener. (I'm not sure whether that's a proper noun, but in the case of KL's property, I'll make an educated guess.) It is a veritable jungle of landscaping genius, a plant collector's dream. Every time I'm there I want to sneak a little hand spade in. (Don't tell KL.)

But she forgot her green gills over my carefully planned raised beds for a moment when she noticed how lush and green my weeds were.

"You have a whole salad here!" she exclaimed. The dandelions, mints and wild herbs looked edible to her. She told me I ought to just water and snip and repeat, all season long.

And yesterday? A few months later? Laura agreed with her:

It's yellow, with an interesting form.

Let's see if I can dig up anything to go with it.

The mouth feel is a little... different.

Okay, maybe this diner is a bit seedy.

Auntie K, are you sure these are edible?

KL actually took these photos... and about 350 more. The Calamity family popped in for a visit after a church potluck. No one at our church was eating dandelion greens, that's for sure.

Maybe I'm getting older (duh), but I actually look forward to the church potluck. Or maybe there are just a lot of really good cooks at our church. Homemade mac-n-cheese, huge green salads, homegrown ham with home-canned peaches.

It calls to mind the Lyle Lovett lyrics: "To the Lord let your praises be/It's time for dinner now let's go eat/We got some beans and some good cornbread/Now listen to what the preacher said."


Grumpy Momma said...

Beautiful girl....and the expressions captured on camera are great!

Think she'll be eating greens again soon?

Agent K said...


Oh. My. Goodness! Those pic's turned out so cute!

Laura making those faces....


And don't mention the garden again, will ya!?!

HonuGirl said...

How precious... indeed!

Misty said...

allow me to say for just a moment, that despite the amounts of non video game love- there is this wonderful video game about farming and the main character does quite often live on weeds because she is too poor and must sell her crops...

so, if need be...

Those photos are adorable and I too have grown into a fan of the pot luck season, although probably because i live to cook and have other people eat my food!