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Home Gardens Musings Recipes

Local Spring Eats

Spring is such an exciting time for those of us who love local food and love being outside.  Many of our annual spring garden tasks, earliest harvesting opportunities, and favorite recipes already have past posts devoted to them.  Click on the photos or titles below to check out what we’re doing to get ready for our 2014 garden, which early spring plants can be foraged from the wild, and what I do with these early shoots and greens in the kitchen:

Seeds vs. Seedlings:

With these early warm temperatures, many people are starting to think about summer vegetable gardening.  And it’s the perfect time to start your own seeds!  I usually start tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants in the second half of March and most other seedlings after that.  But should you start your own seedlings?  The answer isn’t necessarily yes.
With these early warm temperatures, many people are starting to think about summer vegetable gardening. And it’s the perfect time to start your own seeds! I usually start tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants in the second half of March and most other seedlings after that. But should you start your own seedlings? The answer isn’t necessarily yes.

Starting a Container Garden:

Do you rent?  Do you have limited if any space to grow vegetables this summer?  Are you thinking about moving apartments in June or September?  Do you hesitate to garden because you might have to buy a lot of new supplies? Good news: if you’re willing to be creative and resourceful, YOU can have an easy container garden this season!
Do you rent? Do you have limited if any space to grow vegetables this summer? Are you thinking about moving apartments in June or September? Do you hesitate to garden because you might have to buy a lot of new supplies? Good news: if you’re willing to be creative and resourceful, YOU can have an easy container garden this season!

Early Spring Garden Chores:

Here are some of the first things we can do in our Vermont garden when the soil is dry enough to work.
Here are some of the first things we can do in our Vermont garden when the soil is dry enough to work.

Spring Foraging:

Early spring is the perfect time to forage for wild greens.  Many of the first plants to emerge from river banks, forests, and fields are edible, and they’re available before anything is ready from the garden.  In addition, early shoots are often the most delectible part of plant to eat!
Early spring is the perfect time to forage for wild greens. Many of the first plants to emerge from river banks, forests, and fields are edible, and they’re available before anything is ready from the garden. In addition, early shoots are often the most delectible part of plant to eat!

Favorite Spring Meals:

Spring is an exciting time for those of us who eat local ingredients.  Each week, it seems, there’s a new ingredient poking up from the ground, tempting me to incorporate it into my next dish.
Spring is an exciting time for those of us who eat local ingredients. Each week, it seems, there’s a new ingredient poking up from the ground, tempting me to incorporate it into my next dish.
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Home Gardens Musings

Spring in the Back Yard

Spring has finally sprung in Vermont!  We had a beautiful warm weekend to spend in the yard discovering signs of spring and cleaning up remnants of fall and winter.  Plants and animals are emerging after a long cold winter.

Last sap of the season drips out of my sumac spiles
Last sap of the season drips out of sumac spiles
A sweet and tangy batch of sap sumac camomile tea
A sweet and tangy batch of sap sumac camomile tea to start the day
Day Lilly shoots have emerged
Day lily shoots have emerged
I dug up some day lilly shoots and tubers.  Fry firm tubers and shoots in butter with salt.  Yum!
I dug up some day lily shoots and tubers. Fry firm yellow tubers and young shoots in butter with salt. Yum!
chickens-range-free
Chickens range free before the garden is planted.  They’ll eat ticks and grubs and loosen soil as they forage.
Early spring garden treasure hunt! Parsnips survived the winter under a layer of hay.  They are sweet and firm!
Early spring garden treasure hunt! Parsnips survived the winter under a layer of hay. They are sweet and firm!
Early spring parsnip harvest.
Early spring parsnip harvest.
The sour leaves of sorrel have emerged - a perfect fresh garnish for tonight's dinner!
The sour leaves of sorrel have emerged – a perfect fresh garnish for tonight’s dinner!
Our first crocus.  Happy Spring!
Our first crocus. Happy Spring!