In Pursuit of Celery


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Have you ever wanted certain plants in your garden? Have you found that growing them from seed does not work for you? Maybe you need to expand your network for finding plants.

We still have the summer heat, yet the nights have been cooler. Morning dew seems to be helping the plants; I do not see them suffering from a lack of water. This may also be due to the fact that we are not having the triple digit heat every day.I have been looking forward to the Fall planting season, and I have several plants already in the ground. Mainly, I have focused on seeds. This is a practical way to obtain more plants at a better cost; however, water restrictions may have cost me a few plants. What has bothered me is that certain plants simply do not take when I attempt to grow them from seed, so I have to look to other sources.
   Seed packets make sense to me if you want enough vegetables to add to your family’s diet at a reasonable cost. Of course, saving your own seeds, or letting plants be self seeding, is the most cost effective means of obtaining plants. Sometimes plants do not transfer well from those seed starter kits. I also admit that I like the ease of skipping those starter flats, but I think if you really want vegetables for your family, you have to to work with that method. I have been fortunate that many seedlings have taken hold in the garden. There are a few plants that I want, but do not seem to grow when I am trying to use seeds. Celery is one vegetable that I have tried and failed growing.
   I have been to my regular haunts to see if they are stocking up on the next season’s crops. I did find parsley, cilantro, arugula, and a few other herbs. I ended up buying some of these delights for my cooking. There was also the tomato and pepper plants available. I guess these are the standard go-to vegetables, and I was not looking for them. I headed over to Buchanan’s Nursery in the Heights, since I was in the area, and I did find some items that I wanted. I had to buy the Ricola mint, considering that lozenge seems to always be in the house in the winter months. I also found epazote. This herb used to be in my garden, but then it disappeared. This is not to everyone’s taste, but I do like using a bit of the leaves when cooking beans or stews. I was surprised to see the great variety of herbs and vegetables already available, since I had not seen too much in other places. I spotted the celery, so I bought five plants.
   Do you use celery? Someone told me that celery is not used much in the United States. I am not sure if that is true, but the person was a chef. I also often hear that celery offers no nutritional value. Again, I do not know if I can believe that fact. The vegetable does provide fiber. I like to make snacks with celery, and I like to cook with it. Maybe buying celery to grow would not be seen as cost effective. You may spend three dollars for a plant, so purchasing a stalk from the store could be cheaper. Growing celery in your own garden does ensure better quality, and you can turn the plant into a value investment. Instead of harvesting the entire plant all at once, harvest a few stalks from each plant each time that you need celery for a recipe. The plant will last longer, and you will  not be spending three dollars per bunch of celery.
    I still prefer seeds over plant purchases. I can find an unusual variety of a vegetable when looking at the plants (is that a red okra that I see in the corner?), but I do not think that this is the best means of being wise with my money. I think this thought comes into play when we do look for other plants for our gardens. I found a dwarf bamboo for $5 in a two gallon pot at one nursery. This is not the time of year that people usually purchase this plant. The bamboo was also small. When it matures, it will fill in the space quite well. I think some people buy plants at their full size to have that instant effect. I think others do not look for the bargain. Two years ago I purchased ornamental grasses at the end of Fall for a good price. They will never last, I was told. I still have them in the yard. I might not drive out to Buchanan’s often, but the trip can be worth the drive when I come home with objects of my desire. Maybe I should check out a few more nurseries around town.

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Greetings

This site came out of my desire to write about my love of gardening, but also to connect it to my knowledge derived from home inspections. That is why I tied it to the home inspection site.If you have questions, you can email them to me (frank at yourhoustonhomeinspector.com). For home inspections, call 713.781.6090.
Happy gardening, Frank

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