“A little (one) can sometimes see things in others that us older ones cannot because our judgement gets clouded.” ― Brian Jacques, The Bellmaker
With the help of my young assistant, I've been continuing on my path of learning about edible wild plants and their preparation. As with most things, the deeper I go into this well of knowledge, the easier it is to see that there are vast amounts of things that I have yet to know and understand.
In all the spirit of an earthy feast, I went about gathering edibles to make sweet and savory tartlettes...
They were... so/so. The sweet were pretty tasty. The savory, not so much... I have work to do, but am learning from my mistakes. They looked beautiful, anyway, and the day was fun. Bodhi followed the newly awakened turtles and insisted on taking many, many "picture" of them, and most everything else in the yard. Here are a few of the shots.
I've completely revised my "let it be" attitude of yard husbandry. Now, I am very aware of the uses of most of my plants in my vicinity, and those who offer less in the food and medicine areas are given less preferential treatment (I'm looking at YOU, trumpet vine...). I've taken to cutting back all of the new trumpet vine shoots, which come up everywhere - I'm fairly certain the whole house and plot would be one trumpet vine tangle in a few short growing seasons if I didn't cut it back... At one point I thought that might be an interesting environment to live in, but for the lack of nourishment (for people, at least - ants and beetles and hummingbirds seems to thrive on the trumpet flowers, so it's not all for loss, and they are pretty) and photosensitive rash that some people experience from touching the foliage... I'm also at a lack for what to do with the copious amounts of pollen "caterpillars" being gifted to me from the giant male mulberry tree in the yard behind. So far, I've been unsuccessful in finding any uses for them, though I did read about the amazing speed of pollen release (1/2 the speed of sound!), much to the chagrin of those suffering from allergies. It seems that the male mulberry is so popular here, due to it's less messy existence (I'd much rather have purple stains from fruit than mounds of furry, useless, pollen-filled caterpillars...The extent of which has apparently grown to such proportions that it is illegal to plant them in the greater Albuquerque area now, though I've had several mulberry trees start growing on their own in my front yard, and was thrilled to find that one, now taller than the rooftop, after 3 growing years, is a female, producing fruit! She will be staying.)
All in all, a great day, as days go. (I even got around to pasting lily pads to my face and making an art print out of the day...) I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing than spending time taking photos with my son. We even got to visit with family later and I had them be my foraged tartlette guinea pigs, and Bodhi ate some pig...