31 March 2008

¡Pico de gallo by Cinco de Mayo!

This was a project I started before Jenn left for Peru and was supposed to finish before she came back. Then I had the bike wreck and didn't like walking for a while -- much less moving heavy wheelbarrow loads of rock and soil. So it had to wait.

The construction of the planter itself was fun, but it also felt really good mixing potting soil with sand into a heavy gray layer above the rocks that serve for drainage at the bottom. My hands were black as tar, and it took days to get the crud out from under my fingernails. But the cool soil in contrast to the hot sun just felt wonderful.

We finished it weekend before last and excitedly planted all our little plants. Unaware that it was going to nearly freeze last week. D'oh. Looks like everything survived OK, though. We planted bell peppers, jalape├▒os, basil, bush cucumbers, cilantro and lots and lots of 'maters. So with the exception of onion and garlic, which are cheap, I've got all the makings for lots of fresh pico de gallo all summer.

3 comments:

Maggie&Bandit said...

How tall is that box? We're not sure it's short enough for us to crawl into it...We hope Seamus and Sidda are able to at least stick their noses in it.
Staffer Mom likes it, but we think it's a bit too tall.

Anonymous said...

I hope that isn't pressure treated wood. It is hard to tell from the photos, but if so, you don't want to grow food in there. . . .

Brad Barnes said...

It's pressure-treated, but all the science I've read says it's safe. More arsenic leaches to our bodies just by touching the wood than by eating from vegetables grown in a planter of p-t wood. The general rule: "Arsenic accumulates in very small amounts in vegetables, but generally in parts we don't eat." A tomato grown in such a planter showed .14 parts per million of arsenic, when a daily allowance is up to 40 ppm. So you'd have to eat 285 of them a day to hit one day's limit. ... That's all from this site: http://www.taunton.com/finegardening/pages/g00028.asp