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Veggie Bites – Calendula and Grapeseed

I am very excited at how well my calendula oil turned out. I used grapeseed oil as my carrier oil this time…

Greetings fellow gardeners,

Soon, the Winter Solstice will be upon us and we will experience the shortest day of the year. I love the Solstice on December 21 as it means that the next day, December 22, is a little bit longer and closer to spring. 

It is very cold this morning, and the too-many cats are looking longingly at the woodstove. I guess I need to poke through the embers of last night’s fire and get some warmth into this room. Because my home is so draughty, and the woodstove is so hot, it makes it difficult to grow most plants. I am able to grow my scented geraniums, but they were able to survive in the icy parlors of the Victorians, so that is no surprise. I have even decorated my scented geraniums for Christmas.  Other plants, like orchids and violets, do not do well in these conditions. I am lucky that I am able to have a plant stand with lights so that I can grow different things. 

 

Decorated scented geraniums

While I have been baking a few cookies for Christmas, I am very excited at how well my calendula oil turned out. I used grapeseed oil as my carrier oil this time, and I had a lot of blossoms. I should have more than enough to share. 

 

Vials of Calendula Oil

I find myself taking my time when I walk back to feed the chickens. The ground is hard and uneven, so it is not a good idea to rush. This gives me an opportunity to survey my surroundings. The hügelkultur is continuing to grow with each offering of kitchen waste, and a pair of ravens has started to visit. The sedum seed heads are bobbing in the wind, and bits of hay are blowing about. At the very back of my property is a tiny tree. When my mother died in 2011, I dug up a small seedling from her favourite pine tree. It is a sweet Christmas tree shape now and about four feet tall. Seeing it makes me very happy. Being in my garden at this time of year helps to keep me in touch with my plans for the summer. I stand in the grey light and think of where I could open another vegetable garden. The darkness of winter is the perfect time to dream.

I checked on my bulb this morning and it is not happy. I am going to change the water and give it one more week to shape up! You will notice, however, that the flat-leaved Italian parsley is doing very well. I shall be able to harvest that to use for my Christmas dinner. In the coming weeks, I would like to explore growing more vegetables inside. Having fresh produce in deep winter is such a treat.

 

Week 5 Bulb and Parsley