Prior to this Saturday's urban farm bike tour, I stopped by the Columbia Heights farmers market for the sole purpose of picking up a dozen eggs. Just eggs, nothing else. It was a task that should have taken no more than $4 and about 5 minutes. I left 45 minutes later with the dozen pastured eggs (mission accomplished)... along with a pint of strawberries, a small tub of vanilla yoghurt from a new local dairy, and three seedlings (doh!).
I can't help myself: food plant acquisition is becoming an addiction. In early spring, I started a bunch of seeds, many of which have since been transplanted as baby tomatoes and flowers out back. But then I found myself accepting little basil seedlings when I helped out at Walker Jones a few weeks ago. And I picked up little parsley and cilantro transplants at the Dupont market. Mike recently gave me a few sunflower sprouts to add some height to the little green space behind my apartment and we've started some marigolds that I'll be integrating soon to help protect my tomatoes.
It's not like I have an enormous garden patch to work with, and I recognize that I am quickly approaching something beyond acceptable levels of "intensive" growing. But how am I expected to resist when a farmer gets so excited that I'm asking about growing artichokes that he gives me -- I mean he actually refuses payment -- two artichoke seedlings? Well, I couldn't walk away and not buy anything, and my eye fell on a purple-and-white striped fairytale eggplant. See? I was socially obligated to purchase that one! And it fit right into a little spot that I'd cleared when I pulled a few volunteer squash seedlings out back. (Seriously, if anyone wants healthy, mystery squash seedlings, call me. I've got a number that I am growing out myself, but there are plenty to go around. They apparently flourish in my compost, but the only detail I know about them is that they are organic. The rest will be a surprise.) And the artichoke will add some nice, decorative height to my garden come autumn....
Acknowledgment is the first step toward recovery, I am told.
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