Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Harvest Tuesday?

It's been years since we posted a Harvest Monday. Well it didn't happen yesterday so I guess we will keep trying. Unlike many parts of the country, we are having a coolish and wet spring. Actually its been a great spring with three months now of very nice weather. The hot weather plants in the garden are still just hanging out. However, the cool weather plants are putting in overtime.
Since we didn't have a garden last year and a fairly mediocre showing the year before, I've had lots of time to plan and plot. This year we planted some outstanding lettuce and greens. Everything is from Baker Creek and the selection is delicious. We mix spinach, baby kale, various Asian greens, swiss chard, and spinach in with the lettuce so the texture is quite varied. Here are a few of the standouts.
Parris Island Cos (A green romaine that can be cut as loose leaf or as a head. We do both. PIC tastes great, is sturdy, and a great grower. If I only planted one lettuce, this would be the one.)
Rouge d'hiver (A red romaine that turns deep red during colder weather. Again a really nice flavor.)
Mascara (A red oak leaf type. Grows very fast and is good mixed with chicory.)
Speckled (A romaine-ish lettuce which is very pretty green with spots of red. Flavor is much like a regular romaine but you really grow it for the color. This is our favorite of the new varieties. We may give these seed packets for Christmas since it is such a distinct variety. )
Tatsoi (This is a rather odd Asian green that we have never grown before. I meant to use it in stir fry but it has been ending up in the salad mix. The texture and flavor is similar to spinach. I have a difficult time growing enough spinach for us to eat and anything that helps fill the breach is appreciated. The bugs don't seem to like it as much as spinach either. Although given the option, the dog will eat both the tatsoi and kale down to nothing. He's such an odd dog.) 

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Mid-May Garden Post

At this point in the year we are averaging a post a month, not that great. There are some big project to dos on the list so posts should pick up. After getting the garden installed and all of the mulch hauled I took a bit of a break to just enjoy.
The garden is almost completed planted now. I thinned the sumac and used the sticks for pea supports. So far it seems to be working. The peas have pods and are filling out. The bamboo behind is a trellis for the cucumbers. It's been cool the past couple weeks, cool and rainy, so the lettuce is happy but the tomatoes and peppers are just holding steady.

The lettuce patch still looks full even after some significant trimming. We have had plenty to eat and have been giving away bags of extra. Who knew a 4x4 patch would be so productive. Since the last house didn't get more than a couple hours of sun, I'm still getting used to things growing well and being relatively short.

The tomato production bed interplanted with beets. The tomatoes have had weeks of rain and should shoot up a foot on the next warm day.

A shot facing out. The cool weather crops are close to being done and the warm weather ready to take off. Everything is probably planted a bit too far apart but better that than too close.
Bed 1 - eating tomatoes, green onions, basil, bush beans, spinach; Bed 2 - Cucumbers, peas, lettuce; Bed 3-Broccoli, bush beans, peppers, greens, shallots; Bed 4-Radishes, canning tomatoes, beets, sweet corn

Broccoli is starting to head up. We have had a couple cuttings from the broccoli raab so far. At the old place I could never get the broccoli to form heads before it got hot and bolted so this is definitely a win. 
This weekend Sam has arranged some help to get the trailer skin on. That will look like some big progress. In the near future it will get moved to the new garage so I will have a much harder time ignoring it. I guess it's time to get back to work.