Author Topic: Plant once Harvest for years  (Read 1400 times)

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Offline EC

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Plant once Harvest for years
« on: March 02, 2013, 07:17:36 AM »
Courtesy of Backwoods Home Magazine

Quote
Year after year we start seeds, till the ground, plant, weed, harvest, then tear it all out at the end of the season. It's a lot of work, no doubt. But there are some plants you can plant once that will produce a lifetime of food after they are established. Old-timers knew the value of these plants and added them to their new homesteads. Pioneers carefully wrapped and tended baby fruit trees, grapevines, rhubarb, and asparagus roots in their covered wagons. Maybe it's time to lighten your annual workload by adding some of these hardworking plants to your garden. If you do, you'll reap the rewards for many years.

Much more at link.

6 of these 7 perennial food sources listed are incredibly easy to grow in nearly all climates and can be tucked into odd nooks and corners of any garden. The only one I have had problems with is asparagus.
I would also add common mint, though it is incredibly invasive - best planted in a buried plastic container - and almost any potato, especially pink fir apple potatoes (they just taste nice). While not exactly perennials, I have the habit of throwing missed potatoes during bed prep in the sping into the new compost bin, where they do double duty of speeding up the break down of the compost and produce roughly 50 lbs of potatoes from otherwise wasted space.
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Offline mountaineer

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Re: Plant once Harvest for years
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2013, 08:18:12 AM »
I hope to put in some grapevines this year. We have terrible soil, and asparagus probably wouldn't make it.
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Offline EC

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Re: Plant once Harvest for years
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2013, 09:54:35 AM »
I hope to put in some grapevines this year. We have terrible soil, and asparagus probably wouldn't make it.

I spent years trying to make an asparagus bed. Digging, adding sand, feeding, lime to break down our clay - all for nothing. The grapes, on the other hand, give us about 70 lbs per year, lovely leaves for wrapping and cool the entire back of the house. All at the cost of two prunings per year.
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Offline Rapunzel

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Re: Plant once Harvest for years
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2013, 02:16:41 PM »
The only place I know where asparagus grows well is the moist coastal climate in California.  That and artichokes are grown in the Salinas farming regions and used to be grown on the Irvine Ranch.  We were able to grow it when we lived near the coast and had no luck when we moved further inland.. though in the hotter climate inland we get grapes and they flourished.. though like our fruit trees the critters in the wilderness area that was behind our property always knew the site everything was in its prime to harvest and would do it for us in the middle of the night wiping out any chance if us getting the fruits of our labor.  But being able to grow so many different varieties of grapes, raspberries, Fuji apples, peaches, plums and nectarines was so very satisfying.

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Re: Plant once Harvest for years
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2013, 03:28:40 PM »
The entire US grow less than 1/10th of the artichoke crop as does Italy.

Nevertheless, Castroville in Monterey County calls itself  "The Artichoke Center of the World."

Asparagus is frequently served at the table of my Italian-American in-laws.

I asked my wife a few minutes ago, how to prepare. She said "boil, oil, salt, pepper."

btw the Monterey County artichoke industry was started by Swiss-Italians. (Marilyn Monroe, Norma Jean at the time, was crowned Castroville's first Artichoke Queen in 1948)

Big Sur, Carmel By the Sea, Monterey Bay. One of the most scenic places on the plant.
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Offline EC

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Re: Plant once Harvest for years
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2013, 05:32:39 AM »
Guessing your in-laws are southern Italians  :laugh:

My wife likes the steam, butter, Parmesan, salt and pepper approach.
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