Edible Peace Patch Blogs

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Saturday, April 2, 2011

Spring Break

Three and a half days of rain and a few visits by its tenders and the garden has grown with remarkable persistence (click on the photo to see the full-sized panorama).  We encountered this caterpillar crawling across our dill plants this afternoon when we visited the Peace Patch.
We have a butterfly bush growing in the pollinator garden and I am quite certain that monarch caterpillars eat nothing else.  This one appeared to be looking for other sources of food, and in particular, seemed quite happy on the dill.  The coloration is similar to a monarch.  But this is a Black Swallowtail caterpillar.  When it's done, it will look like this.

Elsewhere in the garden, the papaya has sprouted at its top and appear to be quite healthy.  It will grow for several more seasons before it it large enough to produce fruit.  But we anticipate that one day it will grow meaty papaya.

At long last the gourd garden is growing.  Six plants that will soon cover the fence and decorate the west side of the garden to the north.

It is also the season of seeds.  These are some of the hundreds of broccoli pods that contain the next generation of broccoli all over the county.  These will be collected and dried in the weeks ahead, and given out at the harvest festival in May.

Our cilantro has also bolted and seeded.  Here you can see both the flowers and the resulting seeds.  These can be dried and are delicious in cooking Indian food.  They are commonly known as coriander seed.  We will save some for food and some for next year, sending the rest out into the county landscape, into hands of other growers.

Our nasturtium has also begun flowing.  Delicious yellow and pink edible flowers with a hint of spice.  Elsewhere cucumber have begun, okra is taking off, sunflowers are shooting sunward, and the arugula has also gone to seed.  We will begin a slow harvest and measure our way into May.

I am proud of the beautiful garden being grown here by Eckerd College and Lakewood Elementary students.  We will have much to share in a little over a month.

Kip Curtis
Project Director

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