Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Good Life

Our homestead is located on the North Fork of Long Island. Surrounded by a beautiful woodland setting, we are inspired daily through the nature around us.
We are starting a Recovery Garden this Spring and created a hobby that not only will be saving on grocery bills, but will give us countless hours of pleasure by nurturing and tending to the vegetables and herbs.
We live in deer country. So, it's quite the challenge to have any kind of plantings! Fortunatly, we have a fenced area that we can use.

Post May 18
Planted pansies & marigold.

Post May 19
Purchased vegetable & herb plants for Recovery Garden.

Post May 20
Planning garden layout & clearing out weeds.

I'm excited about our herb garden this year. I'm not sure if I will plant them in the Recovery Garden, or create a separate Herb Garden.The existing plants are lavender, oregano, English thyme, and lemon balm. This year, I'm planting basil, Thai basil, rosemary, flat leaf parsley, and more oregano.

Vegetable plants are beefsteak tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, plum tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers-two kinds, and from seed- green beans and sugar peas. We also got a strawberry plant and are looking for blueberries.Speaking of strawberries, I'm looking forward to this year's Strawberry Festival in Mattituck held in June. I'll get back to you on the dates.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Life in Costa Rica, Farmer's Market San Ramon

We lived in San Ramon, Costa Rica over the winter. The photo to the right is a view from our second floor balcony.
San Ramon, an agricultural town located in the highlands of the Central Valley, is about 45 minutes northwest of San Jose, and close to the famous cloud forests of Monteverde and Arenal Volcano in La Fortuna. Neighboring towns are Los Angeles, Palmares, Grecia, and Atenas.

Due to elevation differences, climate in each town can be dramatically different. The dry season is from Dec to April. It was unusually cold in San Ramon this January and February. Many nights the winds howled as the tin roof rattled violently to the point you thought they were going to blow off. It is not always as pictured to the left. There wer sunny days in the 60's. So close to the cloud forest, the clouds would roll in at night, providing the needed cool temperatures and moisture for
this is where Costa Rica's famous and delicious coffee is grown.

Near the campus of Costa Rica University at the edge of town, every Friday and Saturday, the local farmer's market is held where you can get delicious ripe fruit and vegetable and fresh flowers every week.

Fresh produce purchased at the open air farmer's market is at local economy prices. But, gringos look out! Make sure the vendor has a price marked, otherwise the price may go up!
12 cents for a small bunch of bananas. Pineapple, cantalope, watermelon, green beans, tomaotes, white potatoes, broccoli, carrots, celery, peppers and the list goes on.

Back in the U.S., so many of us are talking about having a garden this season. If the White House can have one, why can't you? Once the initial time is invested to set it up, the rewards you reap far outweigh the work needed throughout the summer.
We are even thinking about having chickens and guinea hens. What a hoot!