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Name That Plant! Week 3

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This is another tough one. I don’t expect anyone to have seen it or eaten it before, as I certainly haven’t until inspecting the leaves and gently plucking them off, like an archaeologist at a dig. It’s a very unusual leafy green, that’s at least for sure.
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The Sub-Irrigated Planter Project

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It’s high time I shared the revelation that’s come to our rooftop garden. This project has been months in the works, and years if you count the work of my consultants on this project, who have dedicated their life’s work to exploring and sharing the virtues of SIPs (sub-irrigated planters). And now that the sun has been beating down hard on the rooftops of Red Hook, these uniquely outfitted keg-containers have proven themselves so much worthy of the effort that was put into them. The plants in SIPs are really outdoing all the others.
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Name That Plant! Week 2

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Spring is evidently still in full-swing on the rooftop, although the warm weather might have us think differently. These pole beans have just hit their stride and are proliferating with a handful of mature pods each day. They’re an heirloom variety that I’d previously never heard of nor seen before buying their seeds. Yellow when mature, the pods are edible and have a distinct curled shape. Think you can guess what they’re called?
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Name That Plant! Week 1

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Thank goodness for the rain last week. It came just in time to save the fledgling plants from the heatwave — and to refill the rainwater collection system, which had been dry for nearly a week. This means that our humble rooftop garden will be ensured of plenty of plants to play Name That Plant with again this summer! So let’s start it off.
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Strawberry Saison

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If “Saison” means “season” in French (and it does), then this drink is actually a double entendre — it’s strawberry season on the rooftop! Or, make that “saison des fraises.”
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Spring Flowering Greens & Quinoa Salad with Mint

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I’ve been nipping the buds off of herbs for weeks now — thyme, caraway and even sage that had overwintered. But since planting them in the kegs early April, some of the leafy greens are about at that precious stage now. Picking the flowers off of these greens — deflowering them, as it were — is a heartbreaking act, but it must be done if one wants to keep the plant sending its energy to the leaves, instead of the flowers. Once flowers grow bigger, the more bitter the leaves become, and eventually, less.
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And… We’re Alive!

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Beans. They’re actually the seeds of the plant. And even though they may look bone-dry and ready to cook to death in soup, these dried beans are essentially what you plant in spring, to have a giant beanstalk by the start of summer. We had our beanstalks pretty much grown by this time of year last season, but this time we’ve waited til the frost was gone for good to plant, a few weeks ago. Thanks to all the rain these past three or four weeks, the little stalk-lets are just beginning to wrap around their poles.
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Mac and Good Cheese From Our Latest Red Hook Neighbor

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Some people might say it’s sacrilegious to use a huge wedge of Cabot Clothbound Cheddar in a casserole of macaroni and cheese. But we say… thanks, Anne Saxelby! The cheesemonger of New York City’s Essex Market has opened an outpost in Brooklyn, right down the street from the brewery. For the grand opening of her new cheese cave, we donated a keg of Sixpoint. For that, Anne donated some fifty pounds of cheese to our staff. I like the way things work around here.
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Holy Perennials! And Introducing the Sixpoint Community Garden Team

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Now that is what I call a hop-head! These hops, planted last spring and grown to taller lengths than their bamboo poles could reach by late summer, have come back with a vengeance this spring. And we didn’t have to do anything this time to make that happen. That’s the beauty of perennials — they just keep coming back for more.
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Breakfast (or Lunch) Burritos

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There’s something about these eggs. They make the silkiest scrambled, creamiest poached, and most striking sunny side-up, with its deep orange yolk. They must have twice the richness of average store-bought eggs. And they’ve been popping out of the hens with increasing speed these past few springlike weeks.
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