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June 7th, 2011

red and orange and green

My lilies have opened, it’s officially summer in my mind. This photo is a snap shot, to remind me to spend time with the slr and the lilies when I get home. I wish these red and orange blooms would last all summer.

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March 31st, 2011

juiced

Have you ever had a sip of kale? Nikki and I turned the test kitchen at the photo studio into a juice laboratory.

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For our experiment, we juiced grapes, carrots, clementine oranges, apples, lemons, limes, cucumbers, kale, and mint. Nikki had the idea of making all the juices separately, and then mixing our own concoctions.

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Some things I learned:
1. Juice is better fresh. It didn’t keep well when we tried to save the leftovers (though I may try this again in ice-cube trays for smoothies).
2. Cucumbers made a lot of juice, but the mixes tasted better when cucumber juice was used sparingly.
3. Berries are better in smoothies; they don’t give you a lot of juice.
4. Mixing green and orange juices together may not make a pretty color, but the taste can be really good.
5. You can’t even taste the kale when you mix it with apple or carrot.
6. Nothing goes to waste—we gave the kitchen scraps from the juicer to Troy for his chickens.

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This could be a new way to consume my leftovers—I may not have time to eat a carrot, a bunch of kale, and a few apples before my next CSA pick up, but I could drink them on my way to the office. Troy came up with an apple, carrot, ginger, and parsley juice. It was delicious! Nikki’s favorite juice is cantaloupe, apple, mint, and potato. I kept making things with cucumber and melon, but I definitely need to spend more time experimenting. Or at least keep better notes. I got a bit juice-slappy, and kept stirring everything together with no regard to measurements. I may have succeeded in making the ugliest looking juice on Earth. (Or maybe Staci really had a meeting to get back to, and that’s why she couldn’t try the juice.) What are your favorite juice recipes?

I can’t wait to get some cold crops from the Rodale Institute’s April plant sale. I think it’s time for a kale smoothie.

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March 3rd, 2011

Morris Arboretum part 2, the Witch Hazel Tour

The witch hazels are in bloom! Here’s the edit I promised you from last week’s trip to the Morris Arboretum. The witch hazel blossoms came at the perfect time. February and I were no longer speaking.
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Hamamelis mollis ‘Princeton Gold’

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3 photos of Hamamelis X intermedia ‘Rubin’

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Hamamelis vernalis ‘Sandra’

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Hamamelis X intermedia ‘Luna’

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2 photos of Hamamelis vernalis ‘Christmas Cheer’

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Hamamelis vernalis ‘Sandra’

The arboretum is a great place all year round—the paved paths give you a mud-free place to stretch your legs. After a season of dead-winter-tree blog photos, I was happy to look at this sign of spring. Armed with a map, sunscreen, and camera bag and bundled up in two sweaters, I set out to see all the witch hazel. I spent the whole day at the arboretum. The blossoms started to look surreal after awhile. Did you ever pronounce an everyday word, like “typewriter” or “Dorothy,” over and over again until it starts to sound strange? I kept looking at the little blossoms and they started to look like prehistoric muppet-y anemone animal creatures. On the fuller branches, they started to look like they were in hectic motion, a city of witch hazel. The blue sky and yellow and red flowers warmed the day right up (or maybe it was those two sweaters).

But wait, next week there’s more! It was a beautiful bright sunny day, and I ducked into the fernery while I waited for the light to soften. Come back next Thursday to see some gorgeous ferns and new growth. It’s springtime in the fernery!

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