Friday, June 27, 2008

Kohlrabi: Who'd have thought?

How many of you know what Kohlrabi is?
From the looks that I get at the grocery store or from my friends, I'm going to say not many of you have heard of this vegetable.

This my friends, is KOHLRABI.

I've been eating it since I was a kid, as have my brother and sister. My Dad is the one who introduced it to us, as he too ate it when he was little. He always said it was one of the poor man's vegetables; but from the sound of it, nobody even knows about it. It's kind of like our little secret; but I'm here to share it with you.

We've always eaten it raw, just cut off the leafy parts and the semi-soft skin, to reach the ivory center. As for what it taste like, the closest thing I attribute it to is cabbage; yet it really has a taste of it's own.

The photo above is borrowed from PotomacVegetableFarms website, as seen on DiseaseProof's website. They've pulled together some great info borrowed from further sites, too many to list here; but I encourage you to check out the info and when you visit your local farmer's market or grocer, ask for Kohlrabi.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Starting Small

It always amazes me what a few hours of hardwork and about $80 can do.

Let's see, it started with a ragged mess of weeds; but now take a look at the west side of my house.

See for yourself...

Besides the Azealea bush in the center, I planted 3 of these "Twister" grasses. They'll get about 24" tall.

I then planted 3 carnation plants. Did you know Carnations were perennials, I guess I hadn't thought about it before. I was pleasantly surprised when one of the three plants turned out to be pink; while the other 2 were red.

After a thorough mulching, the area is complete. And as a bonus, those larger white rocks...they were from a pile in my yard.

Now, onto the eastern side of my house. Eventually, this entire side as seen here will be a quiet retreat; but for now I'm slowly laying the groundwork. Here is a flower bed I made from some more rocks found in my yard.

I planted 3 Lirope grasses around the basement window; which as you can see near the top of the below photo needs a good scraping and coat of paint. These grasses will get 18-24" tall. I'm still trying to decide what to put at either end of the flower bed, maybe some daylilies (not like I don't have enough of them) or two more Azealea bushes. I haven't decided yet.

I think the time and effort paid off in the end. Wouldn't you agree??

Lists & Sunburns

The past two weekends have been backbreaking work and I have the sunburn to prove it. My Dad has been helping me try to take back control of my yard...since the house was vacant for over a year before I even bought it, there is so much overgrowth it's going to take forever to reclaim the entire yard. Yet we have had some breakthroughs.

  • First, he finished the semi-round wall and has cut up the remainder of the timbers for easy disposal.
  • Second, we have cleaned and "made pretty" the side area by the AC. It was once a mess of overgrown grass; but now I've planted an Azealea bush, 3 carnation plants and 3 twister mulched.
  • Third, my Dad and about 5 chainsaw blades have finally gotten rid of the majority of the stumps by my porch. This will come in handy down the road.
  • Fourth, we mulched the contorted filbert bed, that I mentioned in my previous posting.
  • Fifth, we created a 15' long flower bed along the house and planted some Liriope.

I'll include some photos when I get some daylight hours to take photos...I've been working long hours at work lately and it's dark by the time I get home :-(

Monday, June 2, 2008

2008 To Do List Review

Since it's now June, I thought I would review this year's To Do List.
Let's see what I've been able to do.

  • Install gutters on garage (Nope, not yet)
  • Put up SheetRock in WorkStation 1/2 of garage (Done, plus my Dad has been working on the rest of garage)
  • Replace cracked window pane -or- replace full window (Not Yet)
  • Paint basement (Nope)
  • Demo and replace warped/broken front driveway stairs (Nope)
  • Kilz "Alien Bedroom" (Yes, it's done)
  • Remove "Alien Bedroom" carpeting (Yes, it's done)
  • Buy Washer & Dryer (Yes, and to make it better they are on the main floor)
So, in review...I'm doing okay. But now I've added the below new item
  • Create Daylily Garden on Front Yard & Back Yard slope
This is an absolute necessity, since I can't cut either slope with the push mower and in fearing for my life, I can't cut it with the riding mower. My Dad has been nice enough to come over the past month and take care of this part for me.
I'm going to use Daylilies for a few reasons. First, I love them. Second, they are can do nearly anything to them and they will still grow and flower. Third, my parents have a huge pile of them at their house that they don't mind parting with. Fourth, whatever you plant one year seems to triple the next year.