Here’s to a Greener Pallet: Growing Salad Leaves at 7,300 Feet in the Rocky Mountains (Outdoors in November ! )

Sorry Kermit… it really is quite easy being green, as I’m rapidly beginning to discover.

Where it all began

How it all began. July 30, 2015. 9:53 am

“It really is easy Being Green! Well, it’s not that difficult. So far results, if lacking profusion, have proven tasty in the extreme. From such humble seeds do mighty Green Pallets grow!”

Being in the 21st Century

Potato Patch & Ice Palace ArborWhen I wrote those words earlier this year the summer season was in full swing and the garden was going quite nuts. Buoyed by deluge after deluge of warm summer rain our local flora and fauna appeared emboldened like never  before. Grasses stood tall to a height that no one could ever quite remember, foxes took on the size and swaggering demeanor of coyotes, and the coyotes feasted like never before. Everything bloomed, prospered and multiplied.

In fact all would have been well near perfect had not the local bee population suffered a near total collapse, prompting me to begin counting the blighters one-by-one until one day it became unbearably clear that the numbers were indeed declining. At the outset I had just sort of presumed that the numbers would steadily rise, not fall. But fall they did. They plummeted in fact – to the point that for well over a week there were no bees to document what-so-ever.

CIMG7272Needless to say, all this had a deeply profound effect upon me. Suddenly I began to notice the large number of trucks trundling around the valley sporting huge plastic tanks. Quite visible inside these monster milk jugs sploshed various hues of poison: blues and reds, yellows and greens; herbicides, pesticides, fungicides and such. Inevitably my mind began to piece together the collateral damage inflicted by all these obnoxious chemicals. Just how many tens of thousands of gallons are we talking about here? I kid you not… there were times this spring and summer when they were here there and everywhere, barrelling down our narrow little valley and quite phenomenal speed, grinding through gears and bouncing over the ever growing potholes. And that’s just this little valley. Across the globe this is going on seemingly everywhere – a full scale war on nature, on our planet. If it were Hollywood aliens doing it we would have zapped them by now, but its not – its we humans and our ugly 21st Century ways, soiling the very ecosystem that gives us life.

Dead Bluebird, Green Man Solar Fountain, Woody Creek COAnd so, this grievous and accelerating assault on nature has given me great cause for anxiety lately. Aall these maniacally stupid and highly poisoness practices have now pushed the world to the brink of a total collapse of the bee population. How bizarre. How strange: the bees completely disappeared for a time this summer but no one really seemed particularity put out by it. I mean, seriously, come on…. were talking bees here, not some obscure bug but one half of the original Dymanic Duo; as in ‘The Birds And The’. And so I must ask, what do you think, are they next? “Hey, by the way, has anyone seen a bird lately….

But honestly, when all said and done, what can I personally do about any of this? Nothing. I can’t do anything about the grotesque amount of poison being sprayed upon the wonderful wildlife corridor that is the Rio Grande Trail. I couldn’t do anything about the amount of toxic spray that drifted our way from a neighbor’s property and took out our lovely little bluebird. The world seems to be slipping into some sort of global malaise, the environment is being raped on a scale quite difficult to even comprehend until recently; and yet the accelerated pace of change roars on unabated.

In fact, 2015 has seen the rampant march of progress take a heavy/brutal hand to Woody Creek.

Woody Creek, Death and Destruction of..

Our once near-deserted back country lanes now throb with huge trucks.

Woody Creek, Death and Destruction of...

For well over a decade I have gazed out across the fields towards Woody Creek Road but these days the view from studio workshop tells a story of rapid, unfettered transformation as one new monster house after another inflicts its indelible smudge upon the landscape: Vast ugly trophy mansions now dot the landscape, huge ridiculous buildings that will for the most part sit empty, fully primed and heated, hot tubs running and driveways toasty, for the majority of the year.

Eastern Portal, Woody Creek, Death and Destruction of..

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Constellation, Birdhaven Mountain, Pilgrim and The Belle

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L to R Leaning Tower, Troy, Polar trout

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Flight of the Dreadnought, Nessi, Iris Bee, Woody Creek CO

And so, to heck with it all. Why get myself all wound up about it? Why not simply embark on a course of action that will focus my mind away from all this madness and towards a positive objective that will I’m sure bring me and my family a little joy – as it serves to produce mountains of delicious leaf-based nutrition. And while were’re at it – why not “utilize some everyday ordinary object (or two)… adapt and re-purpose them for an exciting new life!”

Very first crop

Very first crop

This is when I first grasped the idea for Green Pallets: take some milk jugs, a bit of potting soil, a few seeds and an old but solid pallet – Hey Presto! nice, tasty, tender little grreeeennns. yum

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Mustard, spinach, arugula too; onions, peas, and no digging to do.

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Tall and short, red and green; we’ve got leaves of all shapes with herbs sown between !

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Fresh and delicious, they’re good for you too. Even kids eat them – whoever knew?

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November outdoors, in Woody Creek – the cold sets in – yet just take a peek at these plucky milk jugs, some soil and seed. Some love and attention are all that they need. 

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But perhaps the best part of this exciting adventure is the birth of a business to which I’m practically indentured.

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Spicy and saucy and playful and fun, just one little mouthful, I can assure you you’re won. 

Won to their flavor, their vigor and pep; you’ll finally know why they’re just so darn ‘Hep’.

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Believe me, if you click onto martincooney.com over the coming weeks you are going to see a lot more of these guys.

I mean, they just taste so very darn good. And just as with the Baby Greens of Green Pallets kids love these tasty little gems too. Mothers, fathers, think of their lunchbox and remember the name: Emerald Greens! Has a ring to it, don’t you think?

Best of all, if you live here in the Roaring Fork Valley you’ll soon be able to purchase these little darlings for what I can assure you will be a very fair and reasonable rate indeed, reasonable enough to positively gorge on the things . More to come on this very soon.

But now

here’s the slideshow

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Thanks for stopping by.

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November 3rd 2015. I’ll keep you posted on their progress – last I looked, a few minutes ago they told me to tell you hi.

C’mon… everyone, let’s grow some food why don’t we?

Until next time, all the best eatin’

Cheers!

Μ∇ℜΤ¿Ν

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don’t get mad – get growin’

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