Tag Archives: resilience

The Sourdough Blues

IMG_1575I’ve had the sourdough blues. It started out well enough: the loaf pictured here was my first leavened entirely by wild starter (as opposed to commercial yeast). By then I’d nurtured the teeming colony of lactic acid bacteria (LABs) and various yeasts for almost two weeks, feeding it once, and then twice a day until the blob settled into a familiar pattern of eating, rising, falling. What magic, our microbial world! Continue reading

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Filed under Dans Ontario, Food and Cooking

The Comfrey Mocks Me

ImageThis morning I went out to the garden, coffee in hand, and was reminded for the umpteenth time that we really need to hack back the comfrey and throw it in the compost before it smothers the strawberry patch. It’s even turned up in theĀ frontĀ yard and along the driveway fence; whether seed blew over or it tunneled underneath isn’t clear. Incredulous as it sounds, the latter wouldn’t surprise me. But instead of grabbing the shears, I went back inside…again. Don’t get me wrong, comfrey is a wonderfully important plant if you’re trying to recycle nutrients in your garden, but calling it an ambitious is putting it mildly. Only the raspberries and the mint are comparable opportunists.

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The comfrey somewhere it shouldn’t be.

So it seems fitting that later this morning I stumbled across an article on prickly comfrey in an 1875 issue of Canada Farmer, chiding me for my laziness. We have the regular comfrey, rather than the prickly sort they describe (thank goodness), but their wisdom still holds:

“The advantages which are claimed for it over other plants are these:–It affords a cutting earlier, and lasts longer than almost any other. If cultivated upon a good deep soil, it will yield a heavier crop than any other plant; and, when once planted, it will last for ever.

It sure does.

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Filed under Dans Ontario, History, On Agriculture & the Environment