5.28.2009

Almost Summer Magic

pink clouds

The sky was blue, the clouds were pink, and the garden was bathed in an orange glow as the sun set last night. I left the dishes in the sink and went outside to soak up the magic. My family followed.

I'm conducting an experiment in my garden. I've let all my lettuces and herbs go to seed, in hopes of collecting the seed to plant next season. I really have no idea what I'm doing, but I'm having fun doing it.

coriander

The experiment started by accident. My basil went to seed at the end of last summer, and being the lazy gardener that I am, I left the dried basil stalks alone. When fall rolled around, I decided the dried stalks would look quite pretty in a pitcher on my mantle.

basil seeds

There the dried basil sat all winter long, and come spring I realized that each of the dried flowers were filled with basil seed. I harvested the seed and started planting.

basil

Lo and behold, the seeds grew. Sweet basil, waiting patiently for the tomatoes to turn red, looking forward to reuniting with it's perfect companion in a beautiful salad.

lettuce seeds

Did you know that lettuce seeds grew like wishes? I had no idea how the lettuce seeds would emerge, but now I do.

lettuce wishes

Close your eyes, make a wish, now blow. If you wished for a green salad, I think your wish will come true.

29 comments:

  1. so inspiring, Molly! totally logical way to go. I truly believe that if everyone knew how simple gardening was, well ... you know.

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  2. "I really have no idea what I'm doing, but I'm having fun doing it." Words to live by, my dear. :)

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  3. I am quite taken by harvetsing seeds for the next year. I've been doing so with tomatoes for a few years, and this year I hope to start with greens and annual herbs too. Good for you!

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  4. I think I'll give this a try! Well, if anything grows first! So far, I only have tiny seedlings and a few herbs.

    Oh, I just love summer (or almost summer) evenings!

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  5. another way to save money - love it

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  6. It's even easier if you skip that whole "harvest the seeds" part! We just let the lettuce, spinach, and basil go to seed at the end of the year, and the next spring, well up they come with no help from us at all. If we can do this in the central Washington desert, I'm sure you can do it there, too!

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  7. I'm madly in love with this post. Madly.

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  8. Oooh, I might have to move to the foothills for skies like that! Pretty picture.

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  9. Oh these pictures are so beautiful! and I wish I had thought of letting my herbs go to seed last year. Well, I wish I had thought to save the seed (they went to seed due to my inattention).

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  10. Last year i also let my lettuce bolt, the yellow flowers were lovely i thought... now i have enough growing to feed much more than our little 2 person family! Its not in neat little rows any more, but it eats just as well...

    thanks for sharing!

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  11. Learning to save seeds is on my to-do list for this year too. I let the catnip dry upside down in the picnic shelter last fall. Little catnip plants are now sprouting in between all the bricks. Kinda like when Buggs Bunny planted the martians? I have no idea what I am doing either... : ))

    BTW-Your Basil looks better than the stuff I bought at the nursery!

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  12. I completely need to do that this summer. It gets to be august and I get to be a lazy gardener and my basil flowers. I'll collect the seeds this time!

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  13. At first I thought how beautiful the ladybug was until I saw the basil...Gorgeous!! Both sites of spring and summer in full bounty.
    I enjoy reading your blog.

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  14. we performed the same accidental experiment from our garden last year and now have half of our garden planted from last season's plants. nature most definitely found its way (because I definitely don't know what I'm doing!)

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  15. Seems you garden the same way I do! I am discovering all sorts of things that 'shouldn't' be growing. It's a surprise garden. Lovely post, thanks!

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  16. love the ladybug, great post.

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  17. I just bought some heirloom tomatoes and will surely be doing this also. Lovely posts and beautiful photos!

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  18. I always let some of my lettuces go to seed in the garden because they are supposed to attract beneficial insects. And your lovely ladybug proves that theory!

    I have bunches of early volunteer sunflowers this year--the result of an ill-fated sunflower house last year.

    Such a beautiful line: Did you know lettuce seeds grew like wishes? Poetry!

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  19. I am so impressed by your basil.

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  20. How wonderful...i did not know that is what lettuce seeds look like...but now I do. Cool!

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  21. molly--i love the journey your little basil plants went on from arrangement to dried flowers to seed back to green healthy plants. i have no idea what i'm doing when it comes to gardening, either, but i love giving anything a try!

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  22. I found my way here via Blue Yonder. What a lovely post.

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  23. i’ve collected seed before, but not from lettuce :^)

    good to know! and beautiful, too :^)

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  24. I love the full circle, all the seasons in one beautiful post. Lovely photos.

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  25. that ladybird pic is awesome

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  26. mmmmm basil. next time you make eggs throw some chopped basil on it..trust me! it is great!

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  27. I used to watch the movie Summer Magic atleast once a year when I would stay with my Grandparents. Hmmmm...I love summer magic.

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