Frozen Intentions

Earlier this week I dreamed about frozen beets.  No, not the frozen beets you find in the freezer section of the local grocery store, but I dreamed about the row and half of beets that were sealed into the ground before I could act on my best intentions of picking and canning them for the winter.  It seems the first really hard freeze always comes as a surprise and a shock, and at the very least at an inopportune time.  We so often think that we have longer to (you fill in the blank) than we really do, and time gets away from us before we can even realize we are in the midst of it, whatever “it” is.

In my dream, the ground had thawed, and when I went out to check on the beets, and pull some for dinner, they were no longer useable, as the weeks of frozen ground had locked in the moisture, and they became nothing more than a mass of undesirable dark purple mush.  Compost in the making.  Oh well.  Maybe next fall I will have the time to put up a few quarts.   This year, though, that half a planting of beets will feed next summer’s garden.

Beets are very cool.  The seeds are large, so they are easy to handle when planting, the seeds are planted fairly deep, about ½ to 1” and they are a very reliable crop. Beets will satisfy the gardener with sprouts usually within two weeks of planting, and because they are round and not cylindrical like carrots, you can watch them develop as the season progresses.  Beets do need to be thinned, but the good news is that beet greens are delicious; a little sweeter than Swiss chard, so the entire vegetable is edible, leaving nothing to go to waste….unless you let them freeze into the ground, that is.

Beets are a late-season mainstay to our garden.  All three of us love beets, and they are a favorite of our friend, Brenda, who likes to call them vegetable candy.  One evening we had some friends over for dinner and I decided to serve beets as one of the vegetables.  Much to my surprise, none of the three dinner guests at our table had ever had fresh beets. And this after a half-century of living on this beautiful lush planet.  Our guests looked almost frightened as they took their first bite, but it didn’t take long before they were reaching for more and declaring how they tasted unlike anything else they have ever had.  Glad to be of service to your palettes, dear friends, and glad to help you broaden your food world.

But back to frozen intentions.  I pay attention to my dreams, and I have participated in real honest-to-goodness dream work.  It was an interesting, thought provoking, even humbling season, and I am grateful for the year I invested in that learning experience.   Dreams are full of metaphors and messages, and so when I took some time to think about my frozen beets, I was reminded that I would do well to not let my intentions freeze.  Time is short.  What in our life do we want to cultivate and see grow?  What keeps us from doing the ground work and the processing that will bring that/those dreams to fruition?  I think I have some weeding to do.



  1. January 30, 2010 at 3:57 am

    I like beets, always have. My favorite are the yellow kind, but I like dark red beets as well. Nice detailed article, you have a good writing style. Time to customize your blog, add some life and choose a theme.

  2. NMH said,

    January 30, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    What an amazing meal that was! Thanks for the memories…just don’t weed me out of your life dear friend :o)

    • January 30, 2010 at 3:01 pm

      Thank you friend of my heart and soul. Always, no matter what. All will be as it should.

  3. Chris said,

    January 30, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    I must admit, I have never had a fondness for beets…also must add that I have only ever tried beets out of a can. But now, I most definitely feel that a “fresh & grown with love” beet must be tried!

    • January 31, 2010 at 10:01 pm

      Yes, fresh grown by all means. I have never had canned beets. (Commercially canned, that is). And the love part – that must be the sweetness, eh? Jessie likes roasted beets with goat cheese in a recipe that she developed for herself. I don’t care for goat cheese, but it’s good in this dish. Thanks for the comment.

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