Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Barn Hoppin' Monday

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Continuing my quest this week to fill containers to grow good things to eat I researched potatoes. I found a variety of blog posts and articles on how people have grown potatoes in garbage cans. I might have even read about it on someone's blog linked to Homestead Revival last week Barn Hop(so many to read). I can't remember what first put the idea in my head, but it got there, I researched it and now I have four 32 gallon trash cans set with potato seed inside.

What I did after reading several resources, was to drill holes in the bottom of 4 trash cans. These were old cans just laying around not being used any longer. I then put in about 6 inches of potting soil that was mixed in with some of my homemade compost. I arranged the potato seed in a circle about 4 inches from the sides and 4 inches apart with one in the center. I was able to fit 8 in 3 of them and 7 in the other (it was a slightly smaller can). I covered the seed with about 3 inches of dirt. As the potatoes grow I'll add more potting soil/compost mix and keep adding it until the can is nearly full. I'm excited to see the outcome of such a little space!

I also planted 12 broccoli starts and 8 cauliflower starts. This is the first time I've grown cauliflower so if it goes well I hope to do a LOT more next year. I wonder if I couldn't get it to grow under cover late into the fall, by starting 2nd crop in July. I might try.

I'm still busy decluttering. I did fill about 5 boxes this week. The goal is to be ready for a rummage sale by July 7th. I have a lot to do but am working hard. We leave on vacation on Thursday night so I need to be nearly done by then because the sale is the weekend after we get back.

Fermenting food is another thing we like to try our hand at around here. Not just fermenting and then canning but lacto-fermentation to create a heavenly bite of good lactic acid that will give you a boost to your gut. It aids in creating a healthy intestinal system. To buy these things is expensive, so we make them. On top of that, did you know it is virtually impossible to buy pickles from the store without dye yellow#5 in them. I have yet to find any, even the ones in the refrigerator section. So making your own fermented foods is the best! This week I strained 4 gallons of kombucha tea. We like to add grape juice concentrate to ours for a nice yummy flavor. I'd like to experiment with other flavors but haven't yet. A great place to find out more about fermenting and culturing is Cultures for Health.

Kombucha tea getting ready to ferment.

1 comment:

Marfa said...

Wow, you have been busy. Why are you planting your potatoes in garbage cans instead of the ground? We have been having too much water...so some of our potatoes rotted...maybe that's why you're doing this?

I haven't ventured on the fermenting yet...my sister has been doing some and I have the "Nourishing Traditions" cookbook which I adore with so many fermented recipes!