I have really been enjoying the books I’ve been reading as well as everyone’s posts. I’m learning a great deal about the lives of the various classes and their diets. What I keep coming across, and find very fascinating, is that for the most part, garden produce was considered the food of the lower class. Fruit was prized by everyone, but the aristocrats could afford, and therefore favored meat, cereals, and imported spices and wines, leaving much of the garden vegetables for the poor and the market. While the poor thought themselves deprived of the more “valuable” food stuffs, their diets of vegetables and cider were far healthier than their superiors.
While all of this is so much fun to read about, I am concerned that I am moving away from our goal – to install two gardens this spring. I plan to refocus my efforts by creating a page here at Digging In that will serve as a database of plants for the post-Columbian exchange garden. I hope to include species and varities names, photos, uses, tastes, etc… I believe this will assist with the design process later on and definitely help me stay on track. I am also going to pursue information on construction and structure of the gardens. I really like the raised beds with wattle fencing I keep coming across. I want to nail down a time period for them and learn how to construct them. I think they would be a very attractive addition to our gardens.