Anita Martin

+ Follow
since Aug 16, 2018
Anita likes ...
kids books urban chicken cooking food preservation fiber arts bee
Certified translator for Spanish, former Project Manager in the software business, gardener, book-lover, mother, home-maker, hobby genealogist, crafter and much more
Southern Germany
Apples and Likes
Total received
In last 30 days
Total given
Total received
Received in last 30 days
Total given
Given in last 30 days
Forums and Threads
Scavenger Hunt
expand Pollinator Scavenger Hunt
expand First Scavenger Hunt

Recent posts by Anita Martin

Welcome to Permies and greetings from another European!
I have never been to Romania but our au-pair girl told stories about her home that really raised my curiosity. There must be beautiful landscapes and a rather favourable climate (a bit warmer than Germany).
I would love to see pictures of your land!
6 days ago
I am curious how this year's tomatillos will be like. I had Purple de Milpa for two years - last year from volunteer plants, but this is always a lottery in my climate. Usually when it is warm enough for them to sprout spontaneously it is quite late in the year and they might not bear a lot of fruits.
This year I chose Queen of Malinalco which is bigger and apparently sweeter. Not sure if they will be fine for eating fresh, but salsa or chutney is always an option.

1 week ago
I talked to one of our local rangers about scenic spots in our district, and he recommended a little valley nearby. So today I just took my bike and headed there, about 20-25 minutes from home. The valley is not impressive as such (it is just a tiny brook) but the houses and gardens there had a special charm, loaded with flowers and veggie beds and lilacs in bloom, decorative arrangements, benches etc. Garden lovers!

It was not far away but a route I usually don't take. On the way back I took some photos of old houses and barns (I do love old buildings that are allowed to age in dignity instead of tearing them down).
I got home refreshed and very happy.

In the afternoon when I took daughter1 to an appointment I used the waiting time to buy an icecream cone and stroll along the river. There are some stately homes with lovely gardens, orchards, flowers and none of those ugly modern plants that have come into fashion in the past decades. You could see the clothes on the line and the coffee table set for afternoon coffee and cake, a happy elderly couple sharing some time together on the terrace.

1 week ago
Thanks to this thread I have now sent an order for six or seven beautiful bean varieties which originated in Germany or other European countries so I won't be too frustrated if they don't grow in my climate.
Ahh, pretty beans! I do hope that many of them will mature to harvest the seeds, not only for reseeding but for eating.
It is not too late for this year (last expected frost date is next week).

Aren't they beautiful?
1 week ago

Dorothy Pohorelow wrote:
We are not just talking about plants we can sneak past an HOA or other over reaching organization/gov.  Some of us want a source of food that most folks in our area would think are just pretty plants...  if we make them look like "normal" landscaping or flower gardens they are less likely to be raided by hungry people.   I just planted seeds in a beautiful purple grow bag.  I put in Rainbow Chard, Bullsblood Beets, carrots, shallots, and a version of Lacinato kale that has a lot of colors.  If all goes as planned that bag will be full of colorful foliage in different shapes and textures making it look like a wild riot of color to most folk but will be a nice source of salad greens for us.

Thanks for clarifying, you were right: I was thinking of those pesky HOA stories you hear on the internet.

I am not a conservative gardener and don't think ornamental and vegetable garden should be separate. BUT due to slug pressure I put most of my edibles in my specific veggie beds where I can better control them. I do have some flowers in my veggie beds and some edibles throughout the garden - raspberries, alpine strawberries, topinambur and of course fruit trees, as well as tomatoes, garlic, lettuce, herbs and cucumbers on windowsills and on the terrace which sometimes surprises visitors.

As regards to sneaking for other reasons: I am not afraid of raiding people, for several reasons. Not even in the pandemic have we encountered any food shortages. Supply is good, we have local producers, and before things turn nasty I guess many more people would turn to gardening (many single family homes with gardens around here). People who are knowledgeable would start a garden. And then there are people who would not know how vegetables look like in unprocessed shape  (or how to prepare them for eating) - no need to be afraid of those!

The allotment garden is a different story because nobody watches the veggies. We had to experience loss of some tools already (now we have a shed with a lock). Everybody could go there and steal stuff, either people from outside or even one of the co-gardeners. One neighbour told us she had her peaches disappearing first one after the other and then by batches.
Let's see how things work out in the long run. Last year we had no losses (except the tools).
I am very intrigued about my chinese "the thief won't take them" tomatoes which I had mentioned before (I got the seeds from my chinese SIL). They remain grean like an unripe tomato (not like a green zebra, but paler). I have six little plants this year and might expand if necessary!
1 week ago

Joylynn Hardesty wrote:

Sally Munoz wrote:We snack on black locust flowers and while someone told me they were toxic, I haven't observed any ill effects.

For your infomer's info, the flowers are edible. Read more here.

Interesting article, thanks for the link! I was not aware of all the edible flowers and could still learn something new. The site would have been even better with proper proof-reading and it had a fact wrong about the phlox (which is not an old-world plant but saw the birth of some very pretty breeding varieties in Europe).

As an innocent European I thought the topic was only about pretty edibles and not ones you could sneak into your flowerbeds because where I live there is no need to sneak anything anywhere. Of course I get that you might want to mix something unexpected into your ornamentals ;-)
Apart from the edible flowers mentioned already I think most of my vegetables are beautiful - as beauty lies in the eye of the beholder I just have to think how good they will taste and they instantly become very attractive to me!

As to the question, I am partial to pretty tomatoes. I collect special varieties, often the multi-coloured ones. Artichokes are also so beautiful! Tatsoi is stunning, but my rosettes are not as perfect because the slugs just love all brassicas.
1 week ago

Greg Martin wrote:This year I bought some Cranberry Fliederbarben pole bean seeds from Small House and I admit, I felt a touch emotional by how beautiful they are.....showed them to a seed saving friend and then ended up splitting them with her :)

What is your favorite looking dry bean?  

Oh my, these look good! I just had to google (or rather use ecosia) and found that they are sold on a local ads platform (BTW, it is fliederfarben, meaning lilac coloured).

All those beans in this thread look stunning! Most of these are hard to cultivate here because summers are too short. You get good results with runner beans like Prize Winner and similar, but most pole beans here are cultivated for the pods. It is difficult to get the dry beans - which would be cool as a protein source!
I even tried a variety called Canadian Wonder (dwarf bean) because I thought they might reach maturity but our summers are too cool so the beans were too small for drying (well I tried and they only shrivelled down to nothing).

But I might venture into the land of beautiful beans. I received some beautiful beans from an Internet friend in Austria like Yin Yang beans and Angel beans, but I could not grow them in my soil and climate - Austria has some warmer wine-growing regions that allow for such crops (and apricots!). I have to deal with the conditions I have, I guess.
2 weeks ago

greg mosser wrote:looks like a primrose (Primula spp.)

Yes, certainly a primrose. Where I live, they self-seed and mix with the primula elatior and I have different colours (called carnival primula here) with different stem length. Easy, slug-resistant, cheerful in spring, nectar for ealy pollinators - a bunch of pros!
2 weeks ago
Two years ago I switched from the flimsy smaller seed sets (with 6 up to 12 little compartments) to solid seed trays (quickpots) like Charles Dowding uses them. Due to our cold climate I have to start a lot of plants indoors or in the greenhouse, and I have a lot of slug pressure so I need the plants to be somewhat big before planting them out.

I have some seed trays in the original size (like 10 by 7 cells, no idea, I am a mess with numbers), and some I cut in half.
I can sow one sort of veggie into a tray or use only one row for each type. They are so sturdy I expect to use them for many years.

Downside to seed trays, even if cut in half: They are too big for my indoor window sills. So for these I still use the smaller ones, but I can do multi-sowing, even for tomatoes. I only switch to a bigger size when the plant has outgrown the smaller size, thus saving space.

I am gradually replacing the flimsy small seed sets with sturdy seed sets of natural rubber which I get in our Zero Waste shop. After five years or so the flimsy ones fall apart into micro plastic. I am surprised that people buy plastic cups just for starting seedlings. Solo cups or any plastic cups are banned in Germany.

When the plants have outgrown the seed trays and they can't go into the bed directly (like tomatoes, peppers, etc.) I replant them into pots or in the case of tomatoes into milk cartons that I have accumulated over the years (every time we run out of fresh milk we have to open one of our emergency long-shelflike milk cartons). The rectangular shape makes them ideal for stacking into my wooden boxes.

3 weeks ago
Oh, wait, memories are coming back!

I have a soft spot in my heart for the plants that I got to know through the so-called "Fleißbildchen" we received in Elementary school.
I have to explain a bit: No gender-awareness back in the 70ties with a conservative teacher who preferred us girls to the loud boys. When we had done our homework exceptionally neatly or when we volunteered to recite a poem we would receive one of the coveted "Fleißbildchen" which was a small card with a painting and a rhyme.

And these paintings were the most charming thing: Not only accurate and true to nature but also very modern by including plants like bindweed, dandelion, thistle and nightshadow. It taught the children about the complexities of nature, the interactions between plants and insects and that every creature had its place. The (Austrian) artist painted them almost 90 years ago, and this was decades before Anne Geddes startd to dress up babies as flowers. The artist Ida Bohatta was both ahead of her time and also in a good tradition to explain nature without bias and without demonizing.
Some call them kitschy but I learned to identify many plants with the help of these Fleißkärtchen.

Here is one on the bindweed:

This was my favourite about Nigella - I love Nigella to this day:

Here is one where the butterfly of the species Small Tortoiseshell is moving into his winter lodging:

Here you can browse through some more:[]=ida%7Ctyped&term_meta[]=bohatta%7Ctyped+
3 weeks ago