Mulch it good

When I first got into veggie gardening we talked about buying a tiller and working the land that way. Since permie school/hippie camp, I've come to know, love, and totally rely on building mulch beds. Remember how I do it? Start by suppressing grass and weed growth with cardboard.

Pile on layers of mulch in a variety of forms. We have a hill of decaying shredded woody material so I use that, grass clippings, leaves, chicken litter....whatever is free and handy.

Water well, add soil/finished compost in pockets throughout the deep mulch and plant directly into the soil.The next season that whole mound you made will be beautiful, dark, rich compost, full of worms and ready for growing.

Keyhole Bed: A recap

April 2011
May 2011
June 2011

Then in 2013 I didn't do much gardening...
I was pregnant with Fox. I did
get some onions in the ground in the fall.
Late 2012 the plum tree had bad blight so we chopped it down.

Sometime in early 2014 I put bricks we had on hand
for another project around the bed. This is April 2014.

Here it is now, taken over mostly with perennials, a few annual veggies
tucked here and there, and some flower seeds yet to sprout.

Using the Harvest

This past Saturday, these greens (a combination of sorrel, sweet potato leaves, and Malabar spinach), with the addition of some frozen chopped spinach, became a spinach and cheese pie.

Did you know you can eat sweet potato leaves? They're a great spinach substitute. I collect the young leaves that still have a bit of shininess to them. When I'm using them in a recipe like this pie I quickly blanch them prior to making the pie filling. 

The crust is a basic Pâte Brisée but I skipped the sugar because I don't like the slightest hint of sweetness with a savory filling.  The filling is very similar to this one, but I added some mozzarella since I had it on hand.