Southern Star January 10 2015
A HAPPY new year to you all.
Although I officially stay in holiday mode until the 6th of January, I am also keen to get started on 2015 with all the possibilities of its shiny newness. I am not experiencing the January blues so far, definitely aided by the mild winter conditions, good amounts of sunshine and already brightening evenings.
In fact, there were hardly any ‘dark at half four’ evenings even before the shortest day. I don’t know if it’s just the fine weather or if the change in the seasons is becoming more obvious.
There are already signs of the coming spring, so if you are planning on planting any hedging, there is only a few more weeks where you will be able to get bare root cuttings. These are sold in bunches and are cheaper than when the roots start to spread and foliage appears as at that point they are potted to avoid damage when planting out and will cost more.
This might be especially useful to know if you are planting a large area. Preparation and planting for the coming growing year will begin in earnest this month too.
I am particularly interested in growing for health this year, initially just for personal use and for those around me. We are going to try ginger and turmeric as they are powerhouses in dealing with inflammation which is the basis for so much ill health in the body.
There is very little in the way of Irish production of either yet consumption is increasing. Another nutritional powerhouse is beetroot which we grow already. I am going to juice the beetroot along with the powerful greens such as kale and spinach.
While juicing sometimes gets a bad rap, it does provide the opportunity to get large quantities of good produce and their nutrients into you quickly and easily. If predominately vegetables rather than fruit then blood sugar levels are not a concern either.
A little fruit or the use of ginger and lemon can mask any strong tastes not to your liking and it’s amazing how quickly the taste buds adjust.
I’m on a quest for more energy, restoring my gut health and resolving inflammation issues and I am really in a great position to attain both with the growing facilities and expertise I have at my disposal.
I got some wheatgrass grains and liquid feed for Christmas so I can start growing my own wheatgrass to juice. I don’t find the wheatgrass difficult to drink especially as a shot is all that is needed while it is one of the most complete foods nutrition-wise.
It can also be mixed with other ingredients to tone down the taste if it’s a problem. It’s all at the trial and error stage, but is not a complicated process.
Just place the grains in a seed tray on some compost and spray with water a couple times a day until the grass has reached nine or ten centimetres and then cut for juicing. A pure juice as distinct from a blended smoothie, which retains the fibre, will go straight into the blood stream and start to work as there is nothing to break down. Both are good to have as fibre is important too, but the juices are very soothing if you experience any gut problems.
The new year is of course the traditional time for resolutions and great intentions for looking after ourselves better. Instead of waging a battle with willpower, one that I stuck at in general, I have resolved to focus on adding some good things in and not to focus on the things I don’t want.