Urban Gardener: Week 7

 

Week 7
Week 7

I know I’ve been a little busy and haven’t put in an update, but here it is. As you can see the green onions have all died. I don’t know what happened, but they just died. Over the weekend I’ll be pulling out the peat pellets and planting the remaining seeds and see what happens. The peat pellets have been a bit of a problem outside overall.

The initial peas that were planted had a nice little harvest last night to try as appetizers last night with dinner. I’ll be putting in some spikes to hold them up over the weekend as well as spiking the second set of peas. These were all very high yield peas which shows some promise for the future. They had said they didn’t need to be staked as they were a variety of English bush peas, but I think the staking will help.

The Mesclun lettuce I first planted has taken off and I found I had to cut back some of the plants that were actually beginning to flower. The newer Mesclun hasn’t taken off as well, but I’m sure given a few more days they’ll pick up.

As you’ll see down below, the tomato that I had all but given up on has started to bear fruit. We’ve got two small tomatoes at the moment and I’ll see what I need to do the make them turn from green to red. If you have any ideas let me know.

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peas
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Urban Garden: week 4

 

week 4
week 4

Well this week was kind of interesting because of the heat wave that hit us. I had to water a lot more because of it, but the tomato in the background there wasn’t doing so well and has perked up a bit now that it’s hotter.

The mesclun on the left we did a small harvest on last night and it had a nice spicey taste to it. We’ll have to see how well it comes back and for how long we can keep cutting it and having it grow back. I’ve never heard that before, but I’m willing to give it a try.

The oldest planted peas have only one pod so far, but I haven’t seen much in the way of growth and they don’t like hot weather too much. Because of all the concrete in our backyard the temperature actually hit 109° two days ago which is the highest I’ve seen in a long time. Luckily it’s started to cool off a bit so things are going back to normal.

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My Urban Garden, Week 3

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Week 3

So I’ve decided that every Sunday I’m going to take a picture of how my garden grows and share it with all of you. Last weekend we harvested some of the lettuce for my hamburgers and while good, I still think the shoots were a little young as they were well, kind of tasteless. Since then though the salad has grown back with a fury.

The best news is that on the heirloom peas growing on the far left we have our first pod forming so all will be good. I expect more over the next few weeks, but it seems like we won’t be getting enough to actually cook, but we should at least have some that we can all eat fresh off the vine.

You’ll also note that the other later trays have the green onions taking hold finally and the new lettuce that has sprouted up is starting to grow well. The new lettuce was planted much thinner than the first so it will be interesting to see who this fares. These were also a somewhat different mix of seeds so I’ll make sure to keep you updated on their flavor.

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My Urban Garden, week 2

 

Week 2
Week 2

So I’ve decided to keep the urban garden an ongoing thing. Here’s todays shot and you can see how the peas and lettuce have really grown in the last week.

The green onions have finally taken hold and we have new sprouts of mesclun lettuce coming up on the far right. We also have blooms starting on the peas and tomato so it’ll be interesting to see how it goes.

Currently SF is having some warm weather and our backyard is up to 85°. This is mostly because of the fact that the backs of the houses in the Sunset have shingled concrete that absorbs the heat and radiates it back so it’s getting warm out there. 

Not sure yet, but we’re thinking of harvesting some of the lettuce to go with my SF gourmet hamburgers I’m making tonight. Stay tuned for details.

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Harry O Menswear

 

Harry O Menswear
Harry O Menswear

When you need clothes and I’m talking clothes that give you THAT look you need to make a trip to Harry O Menswear at 124 Second Street in San Francisco.

I got my first suit from him 15 years ago and it still fits and looks brand new to this day. Harry O is the greatest guy I’ve ever met and has some of the finest Italian clothes available. Everything from classics to modern. Harry is the Godfather of fashion for men in SF.

Now here’s a little tip for you. When you go to his store tell him that Eric from baghdadbythebaysf.com sent you and he’ll give you a good discount on anything you purchase. I’ll guarantee you’ll be going back to see him again.

If you could, please click on my sponsors ad below. You don’t necessarily have to purchase anything unless you want to, but at least the click will add money to my daughter’s schooling fund, or if you like you can click on our donation link and donate even a dollar.

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My Urban Garden

My Urban Garden
My Urban Garden

Well we all know the economy sucks at the moment so my wife and I decided to take on a new thing to help us out. We’ve become urban gardeners.

Living in the Sunset district poses an interesting problem. We’re supposed be living in fog all the time. Well thanks to Al Gore and global warming we aren’t so foggy anymore so we started a little test.

The pot on the far left was originally planted with Parsely and was sitting on our deck, but for some reason, probably the wind it was attacked with weeds. Now we’ve moved all the planting trays off the deck and tried again. The far left was cleaned out and planted with heirloom peas. As you can see they’re doing good, but the tray was too small so we went to home depot and  purchased the longest trays they had and next to the far left are more of the same peas. Apparently peas grow well here. Next to that we planted some mesclun lettuce because we go through a lot of that when we make my famous San Francisco style burgers™.

Next to that are some green onions that had a bit of a rough start, but are starting to set in. The two blank trays have more mesclun planted since we’ll be using that a lot. I just planted them today so it’ll be about a week before we see something pop up. Oh and the second set of peas and mesclun have been growing for only about 3 weeks and are doing great.

The big pot over in the back has an early girl™ tomato planted in it. They’re supposed to do well out here which is surprising so we’ll see what happens. I’ll keep you all updated on how it goes. We’re planning on also adding more parsely and garlic next so we’ll see what happens. The nice part about all of this is that peas actually enrich the soil they grow in so when we rotate the crops we’ll start planting peas in the other trays  and moving things around. 

The upside of this is our little girl is now trying to help out, just like I did when my dad used to grow swiss chard, rhubarb and lettuce in the back yard. Only this time we’re growing vegetables we like. It used to be that all of our neighbors grew fruits and vegetables in their backyards. I guess it was just a working class thing for the Sunset, and since I’ve  been born and raised here I’m proud to be a Sunset redneck. 🙂

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Beef Jerky: Food of the Gods.

Food of the Gods
Food of the Gods

Vegan’s beware, you probably won’t be interested in this post. I have had a love for beef jerky since I was a kid. I remember going to the local liquor stores and they had that big old jar of it right up at the counter. It was all pretty much the same back then and I never really thought about why there was ever a need for beef jerky, I just loved it.

It turns out that back in the old days (and I mean pretty old days). People didn’t have refrigerators so after they killed a beast that they could eat for a week or so they’d cut their meat and hang it up and smoke it after usually soaking it in some kind of marinade to soften up the tougher bits and add a bit of flavor. Then when the time came to use it they’d cut off a hunk or two and throw it in the stew pot.

Ok, enough of the history lesson, though I think I will try that some day. Nowadays you can find all kinds of beef jerky out there. Hell there’s a lot that isn’t even made with beef. There’s turkey, venison, ostrich, pork, kangaroo, even alligator jerky. My obsession led me one day to discover that my mother had purchased a food dehydrator from a friend for $10. I started googling “Beef Jerky Recipe” and found a few I liked and gave it a shot.

First time was pretty good, but a little too hot for most people so I started playing around and modifying the recipe. Well it turns out I think I hit the nail on the head this time. Out of a little over 3lbs of london broil I ended up with a pound and a half of beef jerky that everyone keeps telling me I should be selling. Now normally I like to share my recipes, but I’m thinking that this time I shouldn’t because it might be like the Colonel telling everyone how to make his chicken.

The best part about my jerky is that it is very low in saturated fat, low in sodium, high in potassium and believe it or not, I’ve found a way to make the beef have a bit of a smokey bacon aftertaste without the use of bacon or other pork products. There’s also no preservatives to it which is probably why everyone likes it so much. People rarely get to eat fresh jerky. As a matter of fact my first mistake was bringing the bag into work as after trying it they’ve all devoured it and now I have to go make more.

Now I just have read up on food marketing so I don’t have the health department knocking at my door. 🙂

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Rick’s Restaurant has closed.

Rick's Restaurant
Rick's Restaurant

Rick’s was a Sunset District landmark for years even though it went through a lot of changes. When I was young it was called the “Lost Weekend”. Basically just a bar with an organ that apparently Anton LaVey of the Church of Satan used to drop in on weekends and play at. But Rick’s was the best. They had cheap early bird specials, a once a month luau night and some of the best food you could find.

Add to that the talent’s of “Maui Mike” the bartender who’s famous version of Trader Sam’s Mai Tai would knock you for a loop. They tasted so good you’d have to have another and that’s where the trouble started. My wife and I would order Rick’s pot roast and it would feed both of us. Usually we’d call in an order and go pick it up. When we ate in though she’d get the pot roast and I’d either get the NY Strip or kalua pork.  We’d both have lunch on the leftovers the next day. This used to be the big meeting place I’d take my out of town friends to who were always blown away by the food. 

Closing Notice
Closing notice

From a sign we saw on the door it said that it will be returning as the Parkside Tavern also serving food. I hope it’s at least as good as Rick’s or else I will really be bummed. Oh and don’t ask me who the woman is out in front. I got the picture off of Yelp.

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Welcome our new sponsor!

I was contacted by hostrail who is sponsoring my website now. Thank you very much! Dylan who is the big guy there has been great with customer support and has an offer for all of who need some webhosting 30% off if you use the coupon code lgn09

Their pricing is outrageously low and their customer support is great. Check them out now!

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Goodbye Herb. :(

Herb Hamrol
Herb Hamrol

I just discovered that Herb Hamrol died. He was 106. That’s right 106! He’s one of the last known survivors of the 1906 earthquake. I remember him mostly from seeing him at Andronico’s supermarket were he still worked but only two days a week. I remember him telling me once not to drink or smoke or do drugs and then he admitted to quitting smoking at 80. 

Herb liked to talk to the customers and he was one sharp guy for 106. When I first heard him tell someone he was 103 I couldn’t believe I figured he might be in his early 70’s and I’m pretty good with figuring out people’s ages.

I’ll miss Herb. He was a fun guy and one of the reasons I liked going to Andronico’s. To see a guy who was able to keep going and stay sharp for so long and he even remembered back to the 1906 earthquake and used to tell people the story of his mother grabbing him and running down the stairs with him during the quake. Herb was one of those guys that just made San Francisco an interesting place to be. Goodbye Herb.

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