By Patricia Belyea
WAUCONDA WA My original hope for last summer’s indigo crop was to harvest twice for dye extraction. With such a late start to the growing season, only one harvest seemed possible.
Then I pivoted with my goals.
Since I still had lots of indigo dye from 2021, I decided to grow my plants for seed.
Wow! I would have so much seed that I could share the joy of growing indigo with everyone!
I hatched a grand plan to package my indigo seeds and give them to customers in the new year. But my plan got slammed by Jack Frost.
Wait! I had a banner season for Italian basil. In August, I tucked countless containers of pesto into the freezer. Then in early September, I gathered the remaining basil and hung it up to dry.
I had fun making stickers for food-safe baggies—using fusible interfacing to adhere basil leaf art to a scrap of old indigo-dyed cotton. Then I stitched all around, with Aurifil Floss, to make the design pop.
So instead of indigo seeds, Victoria will be including a petite pack of basil in new orders—for as long as they last.
Don’t think of the basil as an incentive. It’s completely the opposite—just a little gift. Because Victoria and I are truly grateful for our thoughtful and generous quilting friends.
As the Year of the Rabbit dawns, we wish you a happy new year!