Friday, May 4, 2012

May Veggies and Recipes

Pink Dogwood Tree Blossoms
May Dogwood

A May-ing We Will Go

We’ve just passed Beltane, marking mid-spring, on May 1. It’s a time for flowers and frolic. Sunny, warm days and not-too-cool nights are perfect for planting veggies and flowers here in Santa Cruz county.  Local gardeners can pick up organic plants this weekend while supporting one of the world’s only organic farmer training programs. UCSC’s Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Foods Systems, formerly known as the Farm and Garden project, is hosting its annual plant sale starting at 10 am May 4 - 5. It’s a great place to find roses, sages, annuals, and all sorts of veggies and herbs while supporting organic farming education. I’ll see you there Saturday!

White Apple Blossoms
Future Apples
All kinds of new herbs are popping up at local farms: mint, dill, oregano, cilantro, parsley, and even early basil. Try them out, either pre-cut from the grocer’s or planted in your own garden. Plenty of green garlic and young leeks are still coming in, along with the first of the spring onions; it’s the pasta a l’olio time of year again. Lettuce, spinach and other greens make salads, steaming, and stir-frying popular this month. New baby beets, turnips, and carrots are replacing large root veggies as we finish up crops that have overwintered in the fields. Fava bean season is near peak, so I’m trying out some new fava recipes. Maybe my friend Mel, who cultivates heirloom favas, will share a recipe too.

The peak season for rose blooms occurs later this month. They’re edible, and make a delightful jam. I’ll share the recipe if I can harvest enough known-organic blossoms while leaving enough blossoms for eye candy.

One more word: strawberries! Organic, please. Try some soon!

Large Green Apricots on Tree
Developing Apricots

May Veggies & Fruits: For Recipes, click links

Fava beans (beginning of season)
Greens: spinach, arugula, bok choy, mei qing choi, tatsoi, mizuna
Oyster mushrooms (cultivated year round)
Radishes (beginning of season)
Sugar Snap Peas & Young Peas

Heritage Pink Rose
Edible Flower of the Month

Favorite & New May Recipes

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