Urban Garden Update!

I haven’t posted about my garden in a while, but we’re still trucking right along and I’m almost to the point of permanently stained neon green fingertips 🙂 Seth and I just staked again with 8ft stakes and trellises, because the tomatoes are out of control:photo 2 (4)

I haven’t had a lot of difficulty this year with snails and slugs, aphids or tomato worms, which is great! Partially due to the lack of moisture here in San Diego (it’s extremely dry this summer), but also because I began spraying with neem oil and BT at the very first signs. I am still struggling a little to combat blight organically, especially on the Roma. Still, nothing relaxes me like gardening does (guaranteed blood sugar drop):photo 4

I have noticed grasshoppers for the first time-and they’re HUGE (they particularly like the catnip). They don’t seem to be doing much damage…so I guess I’ll just be thankful for that at this point. I’ve also found quite a few ladybugs, which I love, and could also be contributing to the lack of aphids.photo 1 (4)

I’ve been harvesting zucchini and cucumbers for about 6 weeks or so, and still going strong. The tomatoes are really coming into season now and last night I harvested Cherry, Roma, Yellow Pear, and the large San Diego and Beefsteak are just about there. I can’t wait for BLTs on Paleo Bread! Food truly is beautiful-notice the rich color as compared with commercially grown produce:photo 3 (1)

Spicy Steak Salad

The other night Seth suggested we make a spicy steak salad-I do the salad and he does the meat. This works well for us when we’re in the kitchen: he’s the meat and I’m the fruits and veggies.

Spicy Steak Salad

  • Organic lettuce mix, whatever you prefer
  • Diced red onion
  • Halved grape tomatoes
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • Cilantro, chopped, A LOT of cilantro
  • Grass fed thin steak, seasoned to your liking

Since we wanted some spice, Seth threw a couple different kinds of pepper in a grinder to get them very fine, then used this dry rub on the steak before grilling [warning, can be very spicy when finely ground!].

I typically use an organic herb lettuce mix, as most times, it contains cilantro (as well as a few other fresh herbs) anyway 🙂 I use kitchen shears to cut lettuce for any salad I make, it just makes it so much easier to eat when you don’t have those big hunks of lettuce that I hate!

I tossed all of the veggies into a bowl and then threw in the cubed, fresh grilled steak, and dressed it in a light olive oil, lemon, and lime juice mixture.

First Tomato Harvest

I can’t even tell you how loud I squealed last night when I went out to my garden and found these:

Aren’t they fabulous?

My first 100% organic tomato harvest, given lots of TLC. It is such a rewarding feeling to know that Seth and I get to enjoy these, even more so knowing where they came from and what went into producing them.

I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Seth again for helping me continuously stake these seven foot monster tomato plants, as we wouldn’t have any if it weren’t for that 🙂 Also, my mom, for continually reminding me that patience is a vital part of gardening!

I see red!

Went out to check on my garden this morning after working out, and I found a lot of red and almost red Juliet Grape tomatoes. I hadn’t even realized they were there, because they’re fairly hidden, but finally! I’ll have to do some picking when I get home tonight. There was one that had fallen off the vine, so I brought it in.

Just for fun, I decided to compare it to the store bought grape tomatoes I have, what a difference:

Minor Food Rant

I feel as though there is a food revolution that is really ramping up as of late which I’m thrilled about, but I don’t understand why research and studies haven’t been more appreciated? It’s difficult for me to understand the priorities of our country and governing bodies when it comes to things as important as our health (reactive vs proactive). Would we really not have enough food to meet demand if we decided not to eat genetically modified, disease resistant, high yield, nutritionally depleted food (that’s a mouthful, but true, considering almost everything is today)? We literally have to eat 10 times more healthy food, to get the nutrients that our bodies need, than we did 100 years ago: Furthermore, the preservatives, artificial ingredients, etc. that are “approved” by the USDA and FDA for consumption, are often listed on the “watch-list” but not high enough priority. Take EDTA (Ethylenediaminetetraacetic Acid) for example, which is on the FDA’s watch list for the potential to cause asthma, allergies, and rashes, among other things, but is down far enough on the list it won’t be looked at for years. Okay…so until then we keep eating it not knowing what it does to our bodies? It can be derived from Formaldehyde (YUM!), and is used in paper, clothing, all sorts of consumer goods, down to soda and food. Next time you go to buy salad dressing, take a look at the ingredient list, and look for EDTA, surprise! it’s in almost every single dressing on the shelf.

Think about it: previous generations lived so long, eating lard, bacon, meat, eggs, a fairly high cholesterol diet, but it came from right outside their front door on the farm, where the animals ate what they were supposed to eat.  We do that today, and we have heart attacks in our mid 40’s, do you think there is a correlation between all of the mass production, antibiotics, and food animals are forced to consume now?  When my great grandparents went to the store, was everything in boxes with ingredient lists a mile long that they couldn’t read or even pronounce? Why do vegetables today taste like crap than if you grow your own organically (tomatoes and cucumbers especially!)?

My philosophy on food: If it didn’t exist 100 years ago, don’t eat it. IFI need to buy something with an ingredient list and there are more than five ingredients, put it back on the shelf.

For your Health!