Write On Rubee

An Arizona-based food, beverage and travel writer since 2008,  I launched this website in 2015 to document my culinary adventures, beverage escapades, gardening endeavors, and travel in the Phoenix area and beyond.  Also find a comprehensive calendar of Phoenix-area food and drink-related events on my Events page.

Filtering by Tag: arizona

Fall 2015 planting

I planted this fabulous selection from Vilardi Gardens on November 11th: Forellenschluss, Red Romaine, and Outredgeous lettuces, Florence fennel, green Mizuna, French sorrel, Early Jersey Wakefield cabbage, Kailan/Chinese kale, King Richard leeks, borage, Japanese Giant Red Mustard, Ruby Red Swiss Chard, Gigante di Napoli Marzatico and Snowball cauliflowers, Quarantina broccoli rabe, Red Russian and Nero Di Toscana kales, Gigante di Napoli parsley, Bloomsdale spinach, Dukat dill, Moroccan mint, and Spigariello liscia.

Fall Vegetable Gardening

Though it's still oppressively hot and the autumn cool-down seems far away, I started prepping my vegetable beds for fall planting.  This weekend I weeded, cut back herbs, pulled out plants that didn't survive the summer, and top dressed with BioFlora Dry Crumbles, a favorite organic, granular fertilizer. I'm all set for some Vilardi Gardens plants.  

My friend Suzanne, owner of Vilardi Gardens, has a fantastic variety of plants that are available at the local farmers markets - look for them at Roadrunner Farmers MarketDeSoto Central Market and Ahwatukee Farmers Market.  After meeting up for lunch recently, I came home with some new additions of sesame (black, tan, and white), tomatoes (Indigo Rose, Cream Sausage, Violet Jasper, Tasmanian Chocolate, Dwarf Beryl Beauty, Punta Banda, and Taxi), Hibiscus sabdariffa, purple and Genovese basil, and Lunga Violetta eggplant.  I can't wait to get them planted this week.  

I'm especially excited to try growing capers for the first time.  

Queen Amber plumeria

I love the unusual coloration on this - a beautiful pastel combination of soft pink, salmon, and peach.  I ordered this from Jungle Jack's Plumerias last year, and these are my first blooms.   Large flowers and a sweet fragrance with a hint of coconut.  

Jungle Jack's Jackie plumeria - different looks according to heat

 Jungle Jack's Jackie (Plumeria rubra) 

Jackie is quite the chameleon according to heat and humidity, but I love all her looks.  These pictures start with May blooms and end with August (110 temps) here in Arizona.

Atomic Red Carrots

I've tried sowing carrots in the fall the last few years but didn't have any success.  They sprouted, but seemed to stall or become woody.  Finally, this year, I had my first batch of fresh, crunchy carrots.  I'm not sure if it was the variety (Atomic Red), the watering schedule, or location, but I hope I have the same crop next spring.  With carrots as sweet as these, I simply toss with extra-virgin olive oil, sprinkle with garlic-herb salt, and roast for 15-20 minutes at 425 degrees.