I planted broccoli and tomatoes in seed trays a couple of weeks ago, and planted up the broccoli yesterday, in homemade paper pots. I always plant too many seeds: going to start practicing some discipline here. But tomatoes are so tricky here in Central TX: I want to do several varieties, to see if I can find one that's early enough to get a decent crop before summer's heat. Last year: 55 days of 100-degrees+, which is a record. And the drought continues.
Today, I'm planting a few horseradish roots in the garden. One of my favorite herbs, and very easy to grow. Multiplies like crazy, though, so be careful where you put it. It'll be there for a long time. Longer than you want, maybe.
I spoke yesterday at Zilker Gardens in Austin, to the Austin Herb Society. Wonderful food, great audience. I practiced my Shaker talk on them: "Earth's Rich Bounties: The Shakers and Their Herbs"--one of the talks I'll be giving on this year's book tour. Penny Appleby helped me sell books, with the proceeds going to Story Circle--we sold nearly $900 worth! Thanks, all you Austin herbies, from me, and from Story Circle. I had a great time.
Books and writing. It's catch-up week. I've just finished reading/correcting the galleys for Together, Alone, and am working on the copy-edited manuscript of The Tale of Applebeck Orchard, both out in September. (Two books in one month: that'll keep me busy!) I've also been learning to tweet on Twitter. (I know, I know, but don't blame me.) I've even managed to post the Twitter links to this blog, so you can read them either here or there. I'm using Twitter to spread the word about the upcoming book publications, and to share some of the material from China's website. I've also been over at Facebook. Busy. Hoping to get back to Holly Blues this coming week.
Books and reading: Finished William Catton's Overshoot (difficult, conceptually challenging, a paradigm-shifter that should be read by every single citizen of this earth) and have started Michael Pollan's Second Nature: A Gardener's Education, which is considerably easier and more enjoyable to read.
Reading note. As most gardeners will testify, the desire to make a garden is often followed by a desire to write down your experiences there--in a notebook, or a letter to a friend who gardens, or if, like me, you make your living by words, in a book. Writing and gardening, these two ways of rendering the world in rows, have a great deal in common.--Michael Pollan