Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Food goals

As I've been wrapping up the major part of the growing season, I've been thinking about goals.  Goals for next year, for the coming years.  So many parts of my life have goals.

For my garden, the goal is to produce as much of the fuits and veggies that we eat as possible.  To that end, I've added fruit trees and bushes along the way.  Next year will see the start of a strawberry bed.  The veggie garden grows each year as well.  I foolishly thought that when I fenced in my garden, that I would be done expanding.  Silly me.  This year I'm adding more beds outside the fence to increase my garden space again.  One of the beds will be a strawberry bed, another a permanent garlic bed, the other 2 will be tomato beds next year.

One of the things I'm really trying in earnest now is season extension.  I've been doing multiple planting of various veggies, mostly those in the cool weather crop families.  When we get to frost time, I'll be putting cold frames over some of those crops to extend them even more.  Others will be mulched and left in the ground to be harvested as we need them.  I still have a long way to go on this one.  I'm still working on which root crops my family likes and which ones need what kind of protection.

Along the same lines, is changing over how we eat.  Eating seasonally and locally is very different than going to the grocery store and buying whatever we're in the mood for.  It means eating asparagus only for the short time its available.  It means forgoing bananas and oranges, since they don't grow here.  (I don't think I'll be able to convince Morgan and hubby to give up the OJ any time soon.)  The thing is, the more we do this, the more we like it.  Its amazing how good food tastes when it hasn't been picked early, shipped around the world and eaten at less than optimal freshness.  We really appreciate the new foods as they become available.  The changing of the seasons and foods that are available are more of a celebration.  Absence makes the heart grow fonder, so to speak.

What are your food goals?  Are you looking to eat healthier?  More locally?


kitsapFG said...

Your goals are very much like mine. I encourage you to keep working on the four season harvest gardening - it is very rewarding and worthwhile but takes some practice to get the timing right to have crops at the right stage of maturity going into the darkening cool days of late fall. The timing is tricky because unlike spring - the fall day length and strength is diminishing with each passing day and at a certain point the plants just quit growing in any real fashion. They have to be mature before that occurs but not matured too early so they don't hold over in a harvestable state. Very doable but even with practice it does not always work perfectly each year.

It's funny you did a goal reflection post today. I did the same thing too since it was the end of the quarter and the largest of the harvests were now behind me. It does seem like a good time for reflection on our goals and how we are doing in meeting them.

Fairly Odd Mother said...

I don't grow much myself b/c our yard is sooooo shady, but I've got a few lanky raspberry bushes taking over the side yard and my pots of herbs that have become staples.

This year, I wasn't as good about making sure I used up every thing I got from my CSA. I'm not sure why, but the fire wasn't under me to get things cooked or stored right away and I ended up throwing away more veggies than I care to think about. This winter, I'm going to find a few tried-and-true recipes for the things we normally get at the CSA and be better prepared. Live and learn, I guess.