Saturday, March 5, 2011

French Inspired Vintage

I posted this awhile back on my French Home and Garden blog {here
but thought it'd look kinda pretty over here too. 
Have a great weekend - we're playing in the dirt - again - this morning. 

. . . if we blink, we might miss the moment of unexpected beauty . . . so, make sure you don't blink to much today.  xoxo lylah

Gotta Love Em

I wanted to take some pictures of the goat bellies so you can follow along with us on their progress, but every picture I tried to take, Storm just had to get in the way. I gave up!

Friday, March 4, 2011

One Thing My Farmer Husband Will Be Remembered For

I just happened to be outside preparing some areas for heirlooms and I just happened to have my little Canon in my pocket and I just happened to catch the beauty and joy of seeing my husband with two of his grandchildren.

And then this third little one wants a ride too!

I don't think they'll forget these days.

Unadulterated Loveliness . . .

. . . from our market store on Tuesday. Come see us this next Tuesday!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Kickn' It In

Today was a FULL day for Michael and I. We worked from early morning until about 6:45 and it's an understatement to say 'we're tired'....but feel good about our tired.

There's something right about good, honest, hard work knowing that in about 40-50-60 days we'll see the fruit of our labor.

I planted about 30 or so Black Beauty eggplant that have been growing in our green house. Michael worked on the irrigation for those eggplant as well as two new raised beds - which hopefully I'll get to plant bell peppers in tomorrow.

We both pulled a ton of weeds today out on the 'field'...that's what we call the area south of the vintage fence. I might add, that if ever you feel like helping out - weeds are always something we appreciate a hand with. It's never ending with those stinkers and as you can see we've lost the battle with the mallow on the east side of the property....but...not the WAR!  We had some help today pulling some and last week a few young men helped out too. That whole area has to get cleared out for melons and squash and things like that.

I also seeded some more beets, transplanted some kale and little lettuces to an area that might make them stay 'happy' a bit longer. Michael added some fill and dirt to a new area - just outside the fence on the east side of our drive. It seemed to be crying out for a ton of flowers and the desert spring mix of color that I had in my seed stash seemed to join in. For fun I tossed in some lemon balm, arugula and borage. Not sure why that crazy combo, but it'll be fun to see what comes up.

Tomorrow will be another very busy day: okra, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, egg plants are all on the list - we'll see what we get accomplished.

Now, all this to say - Michael and I really really really appreciate the support and encouragement we feel from the community that surrounds our farm. It means a ton to us!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Ask Us About A Simple Edible Garden In Your Backyard - We Can Help

The interest for back yard edible gardens is blossoming these days and people have the "want to" but don't have the "how to" and that's where the farm team at The Simple Farm can help.

Anita, is our Master Gardener and she and her company - Simple Edible Gardens - is available for personal edible garden consultation.

Got questions? Call her @ 602.750.9538 for an introductory 90 Minute Garden Consultation for $25 up until April 1st - after that - $50 for 90 minutes.

Ola! Como estas?? What To Do With Chiles

Maria is a chile expert and I asked her to share exactly what she does with these chile peppers - since we're heading toward the pepper (and tomato) season.

Jalapeños (smaller darker green chiles) - how I preserve and use later
Take them off plants
Do not use any that are completely wrinkled and not firm
take the stem off
boil them in water until they turn a lighter green
then I put in freezer baggies and freeze

I use these for my salsa.  Fresh they are great for pico de gallo.

Anaheim Chiles (larger / longer lighter green chiles)
Take them off plants
Do not use any that are completely wrinkled and not firm.
The completely red ones can be left out to dry and used for red chile sauce (for enchiladas, chile con carne, etc) - another post.

Turn on oven to broil.  (you can also do this on the grill outside, but i find this method easier)
I spread them onto cookie sheets (after rinsing thoroughly).
Spray them with a little bit of Pam.
Put in oven between 10-12 minutes.  Check to make sure both sides are completely roasted.
If not, turn chiles, and put back in oven for a couple more minutes.
Let them cool a bit.
Then divide into freezer baggies and freeze.
I use these in salsas, chile con queso, green chile sauce for green chicken enchiladas, green chile con carne, casseroles, omelettes, scrambled eggs, quicke, all kinds of stuff.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Lylah's Mexican Quiche Recipe, Maria's Salsa Recipe

Don't forget to frequent The Simple Farm's Recipe pages {here} for the latest yummy farm recipes!

Your Simple Edible Garden - Companion Planting

It's not as difficult as you might think to grow a garden. You need a good spot that has six to eight hours of sunlight - morning is preferred. You need good soil, good seed and a little understanding as to what likes to be planted next to what.  That's called Companion Planting and lucky for you and me there are some wonderful Companion Planting guides that have removed the guess work for us.

I've always worked the guide - except for one spring I ignored the advice. I wondered why my cucumbers just never took off.  After the fact, I checked back with the guide and read that sage and cucumbers do NOT go together. Thus - unhappy cucumbers!

In general, some plants emit chemicals at the root base or they might drop leaves that conflict with the plant next to it. Companion planting is the way to help make sure you have the best potential to have a healthy garden.

If you lack confidence to get started with your spring garden, we've got help for you at The Simple Farm. Anita Paul is an experienced Master Gardener and is available for a consultation and or continued help with your back yard simple edible garden. She can be reached at her mobile at 602.750.9538. 

Here's one of the companion planting guides I use {sorry, I've lost the link}.

Table 1. COMPANION PLANTING CHART FOR HOME & MARKET GARDENING (compiled from traditional literature on companion planting)
AsparagusTomato, Parsley, Basil
BeansMost Vegetables & Herbs
Beans, BushIrish Potato, Cucumber, Corn, Strawberry, Celery, Summer SavoryOnion
Beans, PoleCorn, Summer Savory, RadishOnion, Beets, Kohlrabi, Sunflower
Cabbage FamilyAromatic Herbs, Celery, Beets, Onion Family, Chamomile, Spinach, ChardDill, Strawberries, Pole Beans, Tomato
CarrotsEnglish Pea, Lettuce, Rosemary, Onion Family, Sage, TomatoDill
CeleryOnion & Cabbage Families, Tomato, Bush Beans, Nasturtium
CornIrish Potato, Beans, English Pea, Pumpkin, Cucumber, SquashTomato
CucumberBeans, Corn, English Pea, Sunflowers, RadishIrish Potato, Aromatic Herbs
EggplantBeans, Marigold
LettuceCarrot, Radish, Strawberry, Cucumber
Onion FamilyBeets, Carrot, Lettuce, Cabbage Family, Summer SavoryBeans, English Peas
ParsleyTomato, Asparagus
Pea, EnglishCarrots, Radish, Turnip, Cucumber, Corn, BeansOnion Family, Gladiolus, Irish Potato
Potato, IrishBeans, Corn, Cabbage Family, Marigolds, HorseradishPumpkin, Squash, Tomato, Cucumber, Sunflower
PumpkinsCorn, MarigoldIrish Potato
RadishEnglish Pea, Nasturtium, Lettuce, CucumberHyssop
SpinachStrawberry, Faba Bean
SquashNasturtium, Corn, MarigoldIrish Potato
TomatoOnion Family, Nasturtium, Marigold, Asparagus, Carrot, Parsley, CucumberIrish Potato, Fennel, Cabbage Family
TurnipEnglish PeaIrish Potato