The Potager

The Potager

Friday, June 12, 2015

Harvesting this week

A quick update of what is being harvested this week. The strawberries are still coming and the asparagus is just about done. Time to let it grow into those lovely feathery plants.
The English peas which were planted late are being harvested.
These were shelled and cooked in milk and butter, sprinkled with salt, pepper and some chopped up mint from the Potager. Absolutely delicious. I got that recipe from the back of a book I just finished, The Dirty Life: A Memoir of Farming, Food and Love. I highly recommend this book.
Salads are going strong now also. There is nothing better than a salad picked fresh from your garden for dinner.

"I heard him say, "In my retirement, I just to be a simple farmer. I want...tranquillity." 
What you really want is a garden, I thought to myself. A very, very small one. 
In my experience, tranquil and simple are two things farming is not." - Kristin Kimball, The Dirty Life

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Chanticleer Garden

Yesterday my friend Sheila and I spent the day celebrating our birthdays at the beautiful Chanticleer Garden in Wayne, PA. It was a perfect day, warm and sunny with a lovely breeze.

Chanticleer Garden is on the former estate of Adolph and Christine Rosengarten. It has been open to the public since 1993. It is 35 acres, every inch of it lovely. We kept remarking how there were no deadheads, weeds or empty spaces. Every bed was arranged to perfection by the horticultural grounds staff.  We asked a gardener how they kept all the tropical plants in the teacup garden alive all winter and were surprised to learn that the staff digs them up, puts them in a nursery pot and moves them to the green house for the winter every year.

The brochure says that they want visitors to feel like special guests of the Rosengartens and there are many lovely places to sit and admire the views. Patios and terraces with lovely patio furniture, fountains and beautiful and imaginative potted containers. Benches made of metal and wood harvested from the property tucked in the woodland by waterfalls, ponds and running streams. Chairs on the lawns also made of wood harvested on the property and painted in vibrant colors and patterns. There are also picnic areas, but we went to a fantastic chain restaurant in Wayne called Le Pain Quotidien. A most delicious lunch of salad and vegetable quiche with blackberry lemonade.
Myself enjoying a sit down break
We tried to decide which area of the garden was our favorite over lunch, but we had a hard time - all of it was lovely. If you are ever in the Philadelphia area, take a day to visit Chanticleer Gardens. You will love it!