Last April and May, when we weren’t boating desert canyon treasures like the Owyhee and the Jarbidge-Bruneau, we took advantage of the time at home to dig into a new gardening endeavor. We figured one thing that could improve the gourmet meals we prepare in the wilderness is more local produce, so we got to work! In the spring we shared some early photos of the old dilapidated greenhouse left behind by the previous property owner of our new office location and the renovation project. It started with cleaning out some old planting benches, pulling a lot of weeds, and stretching new plastic over the frame. We swept the house out and started building some raised beds, which we shared some photos of in a previous newsletter. Once the soil was in the beds and things got planted they really took off. Over the course of the summer, our gardening adventure turned into a fun and rewarding project! Some things worked better than others and we learned a lot, but overall we managed to grow a lot of beautiful, delicious veggies that went out on the river and into the meals we prepare on the Middle Fork and Main Salmon.
This spring, we plan to start earlier so we can have garden produce earlier in the season, as well as focusing of some of the things we learned we can grow really well: lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, carrots, and maybe a few less watermelons, cantaloupe, squash, and broccoli. Don’t get the wrong idea–the melons were AMAZING–but we were eating them after most of the trips were already over! Anyone coming on a trip with us on the Middle Fork or Main Salmon in coming seasons can look forward to eating some homegrown produce on the river. We may not be able to grow 100% of the produce we need for our trips, but something about those homegrown tomatoes just tastes so much better! When working in the office, it’s also really nice to be able to take a break from the computer and stroll through the garden checking on the harvest and snacking on a few fresh cherry tomatoes along the way. I’m excited to see what our 2021 garden endeavor will produce!