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Awake at the Whisk: January 2009

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


Summer in the Seed Catalog

Oh dear! Where will I begin? My seed catalog has arrived from the Seed Savers Exchange. It’s better than strolling the grocery aisles on an empty stomach. It’s cold outside, but inside my catalog, it’s summer already. And the promise of that summer is overflowing with a bounty of colors and foods that is toying with my imagination and my hunger.

I want to buy them all!

Yet, our garden has limits. The hubby and I have already begun to make plans for watermelon growing between camellia trees in the side yard, or a zucchini plant tucked into the front landscape. After all, once you browse a seed catalog, there’s no turning back. Those measly offerings in the local nursery—with their 20 or 30 crops to choose from—suddenly pale as I discover a chocolate bell pepper with a brick red center, a “sunberry” whose flavor rivals a blueberry (and is twice the size), a tomato the color of sunshine, and a banana tree you can grow in your house.

How can I choose just one or two varieties? After all, I must stick to some staples: red bell peppers, purple eggplants, pesto basil. But what about the green eggplants? Or the purple potatoes from Peru? The varieties are endless, and my curiosity too deep.

My itch for spring grows. There are still sad leaves of spinach clinging to life in my winter garden and baggies of frozen peppers from last year’s harvest in the freezer, but already I long for those new summer veggies, hanging enticingly from the vine!

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