A check of the calendar tells me we’re just about smack dab in the middle of May. Of course May forgot to check the calendar and the downpours of April are more than lingering into this month. Though we had a couple teaser days last week where the temperature soared into the mid-80’s, this morning it was so cold we had to build a fire.
We’ve had a bazillion inches of rain (that’s the actual measurement, I think) in the last couple months and whenever the clouds parted long enough in April, you could find me sprinting to the garden, trying to cultivate the ground and get something GREEN growing. The lesson I’m learning is that it doesn’t matter when you plant, if the soil is still too cold, nothing will grow anyway, so patience must be practiced. Easier said than done.
One green that is abundant right now is garlic mustard.
And while garlic mustard is an invasive, allelopathic weed, you can smile knowing you’re doing a good service to other plant species by ripping up as much garlic mustard as you can find and dining on the delicious garlicky leaves. The fact that it grows all on it’s own regardless of how much or little work you put into it, why that’s just pure bonus.
A simple way I’ve been preparing it is in making pesto & freezing pesto. What’s nice about preserving pesto is you get a bright green when all around you vegetation is brown. What’s nice about garlic mustard pesto is that the garlic mustard does double duty for both the green and the garlic. Especially since any garlic that was put up last year is trying to send up shoots of new growth about now.
Garlic mustard is pretty simple to identify. It’s a shame it’s such a fecund weed. I think it’s kind of pretty.
If you’re interested in learning more about wildcrafting (or foraging) here are some resources to get you started: