Friday, September 4, 2015

Seed to Table Series-Avocado


Welcome to our Summer Series,
Seed to Table.
Every Friday, we'll explore a different crop
that you can grow in your own garden.
Whether you're in mid-harvest, already looking ahead to your fall garden,
 or just thinking about growing your own,
we hope this series inspires you.
We'll begin with planting from seed or seedling,
and end up with a scratch recipe. 




Avocados are one of the healthiest foods on the planet.
This fruit, (actually a berry), 
is loaded with potassium and other minerals,
and high in fiber.
It is considered one of the most beneficial food sources 
to maintain a healthy heart.


To grow this nutritional powerhouse,
remove the pit from an avocado and place in a jar.
The water should be in contact with the bottom of the pit,
to encourage root development.
We suspended ours using straws,
but you could use toothpicks, nails or whatever you have on hand.
Place the container outdoors or in a sunny windowsill.
The rooting process takes anywhere from 10 to 21 days.

Once the roots are filling up the jar,
the pit can be potted up into a container.
This tree is about a year and a half old.


In the spring, it can be transplanted into the ground.
This sun-lover will thrive during the warmer seasons
if planted in full sun.
While this plant is usually found in the southernmost regions of our nation,
newer varieties are being developed to grow throughout the country in zones 8-10. 
Fertilizing can be done with a 6-6-6 solution
several times a year.



Avocados don't enjoy freezes.
This is a tree that was damaged a few years ago
when we had a big freeze.
It did recover.



This is one of the trees we started by seed almost 5 years ago.
They can get upwards of 30 feet tall,
depending on the variety.
There are dwarf varieties that get only 10 feet tall
and can be kept in large containers year-round.



Avocados are a favorite in salads and as a sandwich filler
and can be used to make the most delicious guacamole.
The texture is creamy and it will absorb whatever flavors added to it.
It's a versatile and nutritious addition to any diet.

I bet you wouldn't think to use it for dessert!
Check out this easy and luscious recipe!


Dairy-Free Chocolate Pudding
3 avocados (or 1 large)
4-6 T dark cocoa powder
1/4 C honey
1 t vanilla
1/2 t salt

Add all ingredients to food processor.
Mix until smooth.
Refrigerate up to 2 hours before serving.
Makes 4 servings.
Enjoy!



Lemongrass
Leek