"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Sunday, 3 October 2010


I am in love!

I just adore the beetroot plant.

It is exquisite to look at, the leaves and root are both edible and it is delicious cold, hot or pickled - whole, sliced, cubed or cut into julienne strips.  And it provides sodium, phosphorus, calcium and small amounts of Vitamin A and C.  It is also low in calories - containing only 44 cal (189 kj) / 100 gms (Versatile Vegetables ISBN 0706420659 page 42)

The beetroot leaf with it's delicate red veins reminds me of the capillary system in the human body
There are so many exquisitely beautiful vegetable plants that I have decided that I will NOT be planting any more flowering plants that are not edible or useful - lavender, roses, marigold and nasturtiums will be the only exceptions:

 lavender for it use as a cupboard, room fragrance or for use in soaps and as a pest deterrent;

 roses will be planted at the end of our grape vine rows on the farm - also as a pest deterrent;

 marigolds will be planted near my tomatoes;


 nasturtiums will be there for all those pesky worms to much on, and whatever flowers I can harvest, I will put in our salads.

In the permaculture way, giving a portion of one's garden / harvest to the insects continues the cycle - if I have enough of anything, a portion of it will be left exposed for the insects to feed on.

Giving back without taking away - or paying it forward.