Monday, April 18, 2011

Update on the Aerogarden Chili and Herbs

I think after all these years of indoor gardening I'm getting pretty good at this Aerogarden thing. Here's what the herbs are looking like.

The basil, of course, is showing off as usual. It's already grown into the lights twice. Unlike the early days of this blog when I would feel compelled to make pesto every time I pruned basil, now I just chop it, take a nice whiff of it, and throw it away. I know there'll be more.

I was really worried about the cilantro for a while. It had grown and then it just flopped to the ground. But over time something interesting has happened--the bottom of the stem is still bent over, but the tops are growing fast and strong back towards the light. I like your spirit,'re down but you're not out.

The parsley, on the other hand, is really growing very slowly. But there are two tiny stalks up, and I have confidence in now time they'll be as resilient as the cilantro.

What surprised me most was the thyme. In previous Aerogardens, I hardly got a little sprig. Today, they're growing through the roof. So much so that I had to scramble to find a recipe (which I found, see below).

The chili is growing like gangbusters. Here's what they look like now.

They grow up so fast, don't they? To be honest, I'm not sure what to expect next...will there be flowers that turn into chilis? Or will the chilis just grow? Tune in in the coming weeks and you'll find out.
Not wanting to waste any thyme, I used good thyme management skills to make a recipe I found for carrots. It was a ridiculously simple recipe: just toss carrots, fresh thyme sprigs, and garlic together with olive oil and throw it covered into the oven.

The roast carrots came out pretty good, but...where did the thyme go? . Overall, it was a yummy dish, but if I had to do over again I would have put more thyme into it. (okay, rest assured I'm running out of these puns, so you won't have to put up with them for much longer)

Here's something I am VERY excited about. Remember that tomato plant I pulled from my AeroGrow so many weeks ago and repotted? Just a few weeks ago I said that it wasn't growing flowers and that I was pretty much going to toss it. Turns out it got the hint. It has been growing...and growing...and growing, with lots and lots of flowers. I put it on my kitchen windowsill. Wonder how I am defying gravity? You probably can't see it in the picture, but I actually used the Trellis Coil from my Aerogarden and hooked them onto the window blinds. They are doing a super job of holding up all the branches. 

As I did when they were under the grow lights, I'm pruning dead leaves as I see them and "pollenating" the plan by tapping on the branches underneath the flowers until I see a tiny poof of pollen. 

How's this for cool--the plant and the tomatoes are actually bigger than they ever were under the Aerogarden.

This is where I think the good Lord is pretty cool. With anything that man creates, once it's broken, you basically toss it out because it's useless. Here, I had a tomato plant which I'd all but given up on and was about to toss in the trash. But now, it's got a whole new life and it looks like I'll be harvesting yet another batch of tomatoes. In my younger days I'd be philosophical and come up with a metaphor about how you should never give up and how everything you need to overcome life's present difficulties is within you...but in my old age I'm not as insightful as I used to be :P

Remember those cilantro seeds (coriander seeds) I planted? They're growing too, although at about 1/2 of the rate the Aerogarden cilantro is growing. It should be interesting to compare their tastes later on.

1 comment:

DCG said...

I think I'm going to try your carrot recipe, but I concur. Looks like the thyme just kinda vanished.