Wondrous things from seeds

Keep on sowing your seed for you never know which will grow–perhaps it all will.

–Albert Einstein

Any opportunity to follow some advice from Albert Einstein seems like a good addition to daily life. This week’s post is about a few simple seeds you can sow for near-guaranteed abundance. Because yes, the time of garden abundance is beginning here in the northern hemisphere.

photoTo start, let’s check in on those peas we planted during the first project. They’ve been in the garden a while now and are getting tall! The first pea pods are ready for picking with promise of many more to come. I offered my gardening partner first dibs on the first pea of the season. Since then I’ve had repeated requests of “peas!” when we walk by the garden and we hunt for all the pods we can find. If you haven’t planted peas yet, or even if you are already enjoying the first pods of the season, it’s time to sow more! Plant another little row wherever you can find space and they’ll grow up quick and give you a second harvest of peas right when your first ones start to sloIMG_7213w down.

I can’t take credit for this, but my housemate has grown a beautiful fava forest that I am going to need to replicate next year. You can think of fava beans as the southern European version of edamame. Fresh fava beans can be boiled and eaten the same way you’d prepare the kid-pleasing Japanese beans. They grow easily and as part of the legume family are good for your soil (they make more nitrogen available for future plantings).

Here’s something I love tIMG_7201o grow–kale. Recently awarded superfood status kale is a rising star of the veggie world. It grows like crazy on the westcoast and will stay green and healthy all winter only to resume growing again in spring. If the end-times come, or just lean times, you’ll want some kale in your garden.

I’m a fan of fresh picked kale leaves as a standard for salads, but my daughter has not taken to kale (or lettuce for that matter) in fresh leaf form. But we just had a huge turning point: now she loves to pick kale (all by herself of course) and immediately she voluntarily started nibbliIMG_7217ng on it straight from the garden. I was amazed, kids will really eat what they help grow. If you want to get your family asking for second helpings of kale try making kale chips. I follow this simple preparation and add a little grated Parmesan cheese on top before baking.

Kale seeds are a great thing to start in your early spring garden because they like the cool weather, but don’t be afraid to plant them later in the year too. If you sow kale in July you’re guaranteed to have a kale harvest right into the cool months.IMG_7223

Last, but not least, the mighty pole beans are just starting to climb their trellis. In a month’s time we’ll have a bean tunnel marking the entrance to one of our garden pathways. It’s not too late, plant some pole beans now and unleash the jack-and-the-beanstalk power of these vigorous climbers.

We’re keeping it simple with seeds this week, but there is more excitement in store. Farmers have been sending me their info about kid-friendly, organic u-picks and I’ve gathered up a bunch of farm camps for youth and kids over here. I swear all of these farm camp opportunities are fairly new, this growing things thing is really catching on 🙂

Grab a packet of seeds and sow them anywhere you can… perhaps they will all grow. See you next week.

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