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Orchid blossoms & black-eyed peas

Posted Apr 18 2011 12:00am
Today I was delighted to discover my first orchid flowering of the season! (It's the little things that do it for me sometimes). But really, I'm kind of proud of my meager orchid collection because I've had most of them for several years now and have gotten them through many flowerings. I've sort of grown attached to my orchid plants and each time they flower it puts a little skip in my step and a smile on my face. It's funny how Mother Nature can affect us like that.
Ironically, in spite of the name of my blog, my green thumb is still in its humble beginnings. I like to think of it as a work in progress sort of thing. Planting and gardening are a huge passion and interest for me but I don't succeed in everything I tackle, and more times than not I overlook one itsy bitsy detail that seems to put a huge twist on my whole project.

For example, I lost a bunch of peppers and tomatoes last year to caterpillars until I finally found something non-toxic to get rid of them. I thought by moving my plants around the stoop the caterpillars might lose track of their food source. Silly me. I've also killed many a jade plant and other succulents by overwatering... but it looks dry, it must need more water! Again, silly me. I've tragically endured the loss of thriving leafy greens via the bunny rabbit. Or should I say many hungry bunny rabbits. ((((sigh))))

So I've learned a lot along the way and I'm still improving each and every year. Last year I bought compost from the farmer's market because I was in a condo and didn't have the space to make my own, but this year I'm in a house with more room so I'm thinking of tackling that project as well.
Anyway, like I said, I'm proud of my little orchids because they have hung on strong for me over the years and with a little tender love and care I'm hoping they'll continue to do so =)
The large one in the front is about ready to open as well and should have it's first flower next week. So strange but this plant opens up every single year exactly on Easter. No matter which day Easter falls on, the orchid knows and chooses that week to open up to the sunshine. Third year in a row for opening Easter week. Love that <3
You might be wondering, how often do orchids bloom? Well, it depends on the orchid. Some of them flower annually and some will flower several times a year. If your plant goes longer than a year without re-flowering it is probably not getting enough sunlight or nutrients. Check out this page for some orchid care info. Some people are intimidated by orchids, but you really needn't be. If I can do it, you can do it. And the beauty is truly worth the effort. 


So how about a healthy recipe to cap off the night? I made some delicious black eyed peas with sauteed greens the other night. This dish is flavorful, wholesome and full of fiber, protein and other nutrients.

Black-Eyed Peas & Beet Greens
Ingredients:
1 c. cooked black-eyed peas
2-3 cups chopped beet greens and stems
1/2 lg red pepper, chopped
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 Tbs. minced garlic
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 c. vegetable broth (or water)
2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
1 Tbs. toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
salt and pepper to taste

1. Add olive oil and minced garlic to large skillet on medium heat. Add beet greens and stems and stir to incorporate flavors.
2. Add vegetable broth and seasoning and cook until greens begin to wilt.
3. Add black-eyed peas and red pepper to saute pan and continue to stir.
4. Finish off with apple cider vinegar and cook for a few more minutes allowing it to slightly reduce.
**This entire cooking process should take no more than 10 minutes. You don't want to kill the greens. I enjoy my greens just barely wilted so that I'm getting as many live nutrients and enzymes as possible.
Served with a side of quinoa or brown rice and topped with toasted pepitas. Enjoy! 
My juice of the day is another new recipe. I call it...Sweet Clover Juice
1 lg. cucumber
1/2 c. pineapple
2 apples
5 leaves romaine lettuce
1 lg. broccoli stem
sprinkle of cinnamon 
~*~Peace, Love & Veggies 
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