Weekend Marketing & Gardening

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I got my ass soundly kicked on Saturday by venturing not just to the farmer’s market (which is always a 2-3 hour event) and then realizing, upon getting home, that I had forgotten we needed to swing past the grocery cooperative, so we left again for the Co-op. Eegads.

The farmer’s market, though, was lovely. Lots of produce out and about already – aided, I’m sure, by all of these weeks we keep having with super high temperatures. I missed the memo apparently, which stated that it was fine for there to be 85-90+ degree weather. In the last two weeks of May. MAY! I’m trying to feel a bit more sanguine about it, but god knows our electrical bill won’t be happy during this summer. Being an incubator during the high of summer is definitely not up there on my list of “smart ideas”. Anyway!

My haul was a good one: blueberries, snap peas, broccoli, a flat of strawberries, green beans, yellow squash, zucchini, carrots,  tomatoes (!), fresh chevre, a couple loaves of (not wheat-free but OMG good) bread, and a chicken.

That chicken. It actually spawned quite a bit of discussion for us, as it was $25. For a four pound bird. And okay – you know, I get it: small farmers, somewhat higher costs, etc..but..$25 is literally 1/5th of my grocery budget for the week, not to mention, its a 1/4th of what I have to spend at the farmer’s market. I just can’t afford that on a weekly basis. I went ahead and bought it, as I felt some sense of…obligation? I’m not sure, but I felt a little bit like since I asked for them to pull it out of the truck and so on..I just kinda felt committed at that point. Silly? Perhaps.

Either way. It really made us start thinking about raising our own broilers instead, because it would be far cheaper at the end of it all. Of course, there’s an added issue: we have no deep freezer, so the amount of birds we could actually freeze is small. So we were thinking, well, there’s heritage meat birds out there. So maybe..they could just sort of stick around, and we’d just process a few at a time. But again, I really have no idea if this would actually work in practical application, or if its more just a dreamy ideal.

On Sunday we finally got all of the borders planted in the garden. The last things to go in were pie pumpkins and watermelons – pie pumpkins because I daresay my most favorite fall/winter food is pumpkin-anything, and watermelons because every single other person in this house is crazy about them! (Me? I could really care less about them – I crave the occasional watermelon sorbet, but thats about it.) My Parisienne gherkin cucumbers are off like crazy. I got one side trellised last night, I need to figure out a solution for the other side today. I’m out of the bamboo sticks that I was using. (One of which broke on me last weekend and tried to skewer my arm as I fell past it. My bruise was not pretty – though surprisingly small!) The zucchini and patty pan squash are just blooming away – I noticed several baby zucchini and two small green ufo’s while in the garden yesterday evening.

We started the planning process for where to plant out our blueberry and raspberry plants. Turns out, we rock at growing things in the ground. Things in containers? Not so much. Evidenced by the fact that the 2 blueberry and 2 raspberry bushes we’ve got sitting in large pots are emphatically not doing so well. And countless other failed efforts in the past at growing things in pots. Yeah. Why we didn’t really consider that before planting these bushes into pots…well. I think it had more to do with “we’re living in a rental!” than logic. I think our plan now is that when/if we move, we’ll uproot them and take them with us. Anyway, we’re reconsidering where to put them because as Truman was attempting to hack a hole into the ground at our previously thought of location…the soil in that spot ended up looking more like he was digging out a terra cotta pot than..you know..soil. So back to the drawing board for those!

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2 thoughts on “Weekend Marketing & Gardening

  1. Don’t feel bad….I spend $30 on 4 Pork Chops once at a Farmer’s Market.

    • haha Oh god, yeah. I found myself standing there, again, the very next week and paying $27 for 4lbs of ground meat. I walked away, shaking my head at myself. Especially when I now know there’s cheaper farms to buy from in this area! Thats one of the greatest things about Knoxville – there’s SO many all natural or certified naturally grown and a few organic farms around here.

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