Thursday, January 15, 2015
I pulled some of the radishes that were taking over the beets and salad greens. This year I tried over-planting radishes with the other root vegetables. I've heard it helps shelter them and keeps the seeds from washing away. It didn't seem to work very well, because the radishes took over and shaded out the beets and parsnips, and pulling the ones over the carrots really disrupted the carrots - I had to re-seed them, and they sprouted up right away and look fine now. Well, I had to try it once.
I love the color of winter radishes. They look like Easter eggs in the rye grass! They will likely go into a salad or stir-fry. We have plenty of radish and pumpkin pickles still to eat.
The kale and salad greens have been fabulous. The cool weather has made even the arugula sweet. I'm growing out a bunch of different lettuce varieties for Forage, to try them out and hopefully save seed. The salads have been amazing. I love growing all these different kinds. My favorite of their lettuces has been the Crisp Mint and the Drunken Woman lettuce (the name both appalls me and amuses me, though!). The Shu Tu Mai, or sword-leaf lettuce (I think that's what it's called) is really sweet and flavorful. It was one that I planted, and I had misgivings about it, but I will certainly try to save seed and grow it again in my garden.
I had wanted to plant the boring old Vates kale, and was thwarted when it was out of stock, but I really have been enjoying the beautiful purple color of the Scarlet kale I grew instead. There aren't many flowers that survive all the frosts, and it adds beautiful color and is infinitely more edible for my family than the very pungent, but very beautiful red mustard.
Last week we enjoyed the first of the broccoli (not pictured, of course, but it was very good), and the cauliflower is beginning to head. I planted two more rows of various starts like kohlrabi, kale, cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower. I didn't label them in the garden, but I'm getting fairly good at telling them apart once they are larger (I hope). I brought some more starts out. These poor guys got forgotten about in the cold frame and didn't get enough sunlight. These are more Pak Choy and Napa cabbage.
This is what the garden looked like for most of last week! Brrrr...Monday's rain and warm weather was a nice break from the damp cold.