Saturday, April 25, 2015

The pulse of the planet

I live on an active volcano, Kilauea. Being so close to new earth being formed, it is a constant reminder that we, humans, are merely minute participants on this really awesome planet. This is a scene at Halema`uma`u Crater just 3 miles from my home as the crow flies. For this eruption, this is the first time the lava pool has reached so close to the surface that it's been visible from the Jaggar Overlook. Tutu Pele showed us her beautiful display of spewing magma tonight! I am in total awe!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Growing my own food

Manoa lettuce, chives, arugula

My nightly task: picking out slugs and caterpillars with my trusty flashlight in hand. Score: 2 leopard slugs, 5 smaller slugs, 9 giant dark gray caterpillars (edit: they're cutworms!), 6 green caterpillars, and a zillion aphids and whiteflies.

I am in a quandry. Is there a humane way to dispatch them quickly and painlessly? They are all non-native (i.e. don't belong) so taking them elsewhere doesn't seem like a reasonable choice. Any suggestions?

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Raised garden bed in Volcano

My raised garden beds just outside the kitchen door

At just under 4,000 ft in elevation, Volcano is nice and cool and water is rarely an issue so perfect for leafy vegetables. So, about 3 weeks ago and with the help from my Goddaughter, I started another raised garden bed for rainbow chard, arugula, lettuce, and spinach. I added some chives a week later. To make use of every bit of space, I snuck in a couple rows of lettuce for microgreens that I plan to collect before my lettuces get too big. I've been eating a lot of salads these days so I'm pretty sure I could eat all of the greens in a couple meals so I'm thinking another bed is in order!

The smaller boxes, started about 2 weeks ago, contain cilantro (foreground) and mesclun (background) and to increase the chances of getting a few harvests before my cilantro bolts, I am trying this cilantro-growing technique that I found on Pinterest. I'm really hopeful and will post pics as my plants mature. :)