Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Dad's Edible Garden

I'm on Kauai visiting. Last night there was a hard rain and thunderstorms. The thunder sounded like it was right above us. Yikes!

Come morning, the plants were well watered and happy to be living in Hawaii. Here's some of what my dad has growing at his house.

Okinawan Spinach (gynura procumbens)
My grandma brought this plant over to our house years and years ago. She said it reduces cholesterol levels. My dad's kept the plant all these years although he won't eat the leaves. I tasted it and it doesn't taste like regular spinach. It has a funky, nutty taste. I probably wouldn't eat this raw. I did however, experiment and blanch a bunch of leaves and threw together a blanched spinach salad with dried shrimp, mirin and soy sauce. It didn't taste too bad masked by other flavors. My dad tasted it and agreed, although I'm not sure I could get him to eat more.

I did a quick Google search on this plant and it's an herb with medicinal properties. It's been reported to lower cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugars. People eat it fresh, boiled and dried into teas.

Hawaiian Chili Pepper
This is the plant that my dad sent me seeds for. I hope my plants grow in Oregon. I love how pretty the peppers look. The turn from green to yellow, orange and red. They're really pretty! They only get about 3/4 - 1 inch long and pack a punch. We use it in cooking and to make chili pepper water. A lot of people asked me about chili pepper water. I'll do a separate post about chili pepper water soon. Funny side story, but when I was little, for some reason I thought the little peppers were lipstick. Ouch, lesson learned.

My dad has a small raised bed in the back of the house.

Green onions


More green onions and chives

Here's rosemary gone wild. This bush is actually taller than I am. It's over 5 feet tall. As you can see, it's almost as tall as the stop sign in the background.

Rosemary flowers


Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Okinawan spinach look familiar but I can recall where I have seen it. Wow what a healthy garden.

Wendy said...

That's a LOT of rosemary!

I wonder if you could pickle or salt those greens?

Your dad's hydroponic garden looks fabulous! I'll have to refer my satanic boy scouts to that photo. One of their options is to build a hydroponic garden.

~Holly~ said...

wendy-I hadn't thought about pickling the Okinawan greens. That may work! Thanks! He's been experimenting with growing hydroponically. Cool eh?