Thank our lucky stars we don't have tornados like those that swept across the USA's mid-west this week. With whole towns flattened and all efforts focused on rebuilding lives and houses, I'm sure it will be a long time before gardens again flourish in those parts. I’m praying that a few hardy plants will push through the rubble to offer a bloom of hope. It is so easy to feel detached from the many international disasters but after our own Canterbury earthquakes, it’s hard not to feel for those far off people who must be equally devastated at the loss of loved ones and homes. Yet again, the weather with all its vagaries continues to influence lives everywhere.
On a much brighter note, or perhaps, ‘Cloudy’ outlook, we are delighted to toast Kiwi success after a garden inspired by the magnificence of the Marlborough wine region is honoured at the Chelsea Flower Show. Back home, we focus on Franklin, south of Auckland, with an article about an innovative business together with a photo gallery of garden images from the area. We also exercise a little flower power with the first of our two-part look at edible flowers (plant of the week), learn about growing violas and have a copy of the lovely, Flowers – Style Recipes up for grabs.
Before departing I thought I’d share this easy recipe which I picked up years ago – ideal for making use of excess capsicums.
Remove seeds and pith from 8-10 coloured capsicums – red, orange, green, yellow and cut into strips. In a fry-pan sauté three to five cloves of garlic until soft and golden, add capsicum slices. Cook 10 minutes then add two-three tablespoons sliced black olives and one heaped tablespoon capers. Simmer further 10 minutes. Remove from stove top and let cool (room temperature). While capsicum mix is cooling, grill some ham and cheese on thick slices of crusty bread (focaccia, sourdough, rye, what have you) then top with capsicum mix. A drizzle of olive oil or balsamic can add an innovative twist.
Enjoy, and catch you all next week,
Cheers from Helen and the Garden-NZ team