"The tragic reality is that very few sustainable systems are designed or applied by those who hold power, and the reason for this is obvious and simple: to let people arrange their own food, energy and shelter is to lose economic and political control over them. We should cease to look to power structures, hierarchical systems, or governments to help us, and devise ways to help ourselves." - Bill Mollison

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Root Hairs And Other Ramblings

Some of my kale, and other brassicas have emerged and will soon be forced to shiver in the greenhouse with the recently banished onions, leeks, and collard greens. I am running out of room in the house and need the space for less hearty plants...tomatoes, peppers, eggplants...and more brassicas.

All the plants that can't be directly seeded into the garden are planted in flats or anything I can find to start them in. As soon as they come up I give them a couple days under the above lights and then off to the greenhouse they go and the next batch gets a turn. I can stuff 15 flats at a time under the fluorescents and have around 30 waiting their turn...I hope they don't all germinate at the same time. :)

Please don't make the same mistake I did not so many years ago and confuse the little white root hairs that appear on these newly emerging brassica seedlings as mold, or a soil fungus. The difference can be seen in this picture of my collards, and kale seedlings emerging. Notice the root hairs on the first plants compared to the mold in the last picture.

As far as ability goes, my horticulture skills are average at best and certainly do not achieve "green thumb" status, so I must use any means necessary to achieve my goals. Fortunately, I do excel in one area that is most helpful when it comes to growing ones own food, I am persistent. My secret to a great garden harvest is to plant a lot more than I will ever need so that no matter what Mother Nature throws my way I will surely have enough. One for germination issues, one for the bugs, one for the voles and field mice, one or two for the weather and the rest for my flock and I... Perseverance!


randi moore said...

always a good idea to tithe to Mother Nature!

Mr. H said...

Hi Randi,

Mother nature exacts a heavy toll indeed. I can fight the bugs, and most other issues but alas the weather is still my master.

A verse from: The Cloud

"I wield the flail of the lashing hail,
And whiten the green plains under,
And then again I dissolve it in rain,
And laugh as I pass in thunder."

— Percy Bysshe Shelley


healthseeker said...

I look forward to seeing more posts of Subsistence Pettern. These were sent to me by a friend. On okra, my favorite way is to slice the pods into 1/2" wide rings, then shake them in a bag with wheat germ and nutritional yeast along with a little unbleached flour and some salt. Maybe add a little garlic powder and onion powder. Then either broil or bake on an oiled cookie sheet. They turn out crispy on the outside and soft in the middle. --Clara Mae

Mr. H said...

Hi Clara Mae,

Thank you so much for the cooking tips. I will try that, it sounds delicious!


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