Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sprouts no more

Evening before last was filled with transplanting of our massive amount of tomato plants. After leaving them in the mini-greenhouse over the weekend, they all grew 1 to 2 inches. It is quite spectacular to see that so much can happen in so little time. Had them spread all over the living room when my fiancé and landlord arrived. I got quite the look from the latter until she realized what I was growing. She lives in New Edinburgh and informed me that she was following our articles in the New Edinburgh News ( We've been lucky enough to be able to contribute to the community newspaper on a regular basis now for the past few months.

I’ve had to replant about 80% of them so that the stem isn’t so high and they can support themselves. Won’t be long now, another 2 weeks or so, and they will be hitting the garden, ready to grow! I’ve added a few pictures, which I realize are the first of me actually working. Voila!

Speaking of hitting the garden, tonight is going to be a marathon of planting. My fiancé and I are going out to Navan to plant carrots, beets, celeriac, and maybe a few other root vegetables. Should be covering about 65% of the ground with them. Supposed to be great weather and hopefully not too hot. Now is the time to get these things in the ground, as I’m not looking forward to all the mosquitoes that are supposedly coming out very shortly. I’ve looked all over for the “last frost” of the year predictions and we should be beyond it now. Here’s to hoping.

Probably won’t have time for another entry this week as catering is ramping up and I’ll be lending them a hand over the next few days. Again, I’ll be gone all weekend and won’t be back till late Monday night now. (For anyone who is curious, planning a long distance wedding more then 5 hours away, includes a great deal of travel time.)

Let’s hope all goes well tonight!


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Gardening is not a rational act

“Gardening is not a rational act.” is a quote I found by Margaret Atwood. After last nights moving of 10 yards of topsoil; I agree. In 4 ½ hours we managed to move most of that about 100 or so feet and spread it all across the garden. Needless to say, I was a little stiff this morning and am dreading rolling out of bed tomorrow and being sore ALL over. The photo below is the original pile at about 3/4 gone.

I was lucky enough to be able to enlist JL for some help and have a Tracey’s husband pitch-in for a few hours. Thank goodness I didn’t have to do it all on my lonesome. We finished up at about 8:30pm and we were exhausted. I do have to admit that having the use of the mini-tractor was a great help!

All in all, we have most of it done now and have left a few piles on top of the garden to spread out once things have settled.

Next week is planting time! Oh, and, good news, spoke with Stuart and Terry at Bryson Farms and they will provide us with seeds for Heirloom Carrots! Talking to Stuart, I was assured that we had a long enough growing season to plant 2 sets of carrots so that our harvest lasts longer and the same for beets.

Now that the search is over we can re-focus our efforts on getting things into the ground and re-organizing the layout, as things have had to change, as they always do, once we broke into the ground.

Next week I plan on laying everything out, maybe make a few paths down the center, and I'll be planting seeds for carrots and beets.
As everything comes together, and the seedlings turn into real tomato plants, everything is becoming more and more exciting.

I’m away for the weekend but will keep you posted on how things are advancing very shortly. Also, Tracey should be putting up a post some time this week to tell you all about her weekend in New York City and our yearly participation in Bon Appetit ( Keep your eyes peeled!


Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Top soil, cheese and seedlings

What a week. We had the Spring Trade Tasting for PECGWA last night, Bon Appetit tonight, another huge event tomorrow night and few others in between. Catering is busy, busy, busy. Speaking of busy, I head out to Navan tonight to load in 10 square yards of top soil into the garden. Should be interesting.

I have been able to recruit my friend JL again, which will be great help since Tracey will have her hands full at Bon Appetit. The soil was shipped last night and dropped in the front of the yard, so we’ll have to haul it around 100 feet to the back. I don’t think we’ll get it all done tonight, but hopefully we can do most of it. My only concern is that it rained last night and so we may be shoveling mud. :0(

On a brighter note, our tomato seedlings are doing great! I’ve posted a few pictures and will add some more tomorrow if I have time to take more shots. I have since moved them from the basement at the shop and brought them all home. Picked up a nice little greenhouse from the CTC (Canadian Tire Company), added two light fixtures and they are doing very well because of it I think!

I want to take a minute and talk about a wonderful discovery we made last night at the Trade Show Tasting. Over the last few weeks I have been trying to contact the owners of Fifth Town Cheeses (, an artisanal cheese company in Prince Edward County. I have successfully tracked down the owner and will be calling her today. All this to say that they donated a few cheeses for a station at the event last night and we were blown away!

FTCC is “an environmentally and socially responsible enterprise positioned as a niche producer of fine hand made cheeses using fresh, locally produced goat and sheep milk.”
And their product is phenomenal! We experienced an array of 3 or 4 soft ripened goat cheeses, goat cheese bagel spread, hand rolled cheese logs and last but not least, a lemon Sheep Milk Cheese. A hard cheese with just a hint of Lemon and just a touch salt; It was to die for!

I encourage everyone to visit the website and please ask for it from your local cheese monger. We will soon be carrying it as part of our permanent line of Artisan Cheese Platters.

Wish me luck for tonight!