This morning I thinned the arugula/spring greens flat on my backporch. The greens are finally starting to grow, now that spring is here. I added the sprouts to my breakfast sandwich of maple-roasted turkey, Provolone and Zhoug on baguette. Delicious!
Today, I transplanted most of my seedlings: 6 tomatoes, 1 pepper, 2 cucumbers (1 pickling, 1 slicer), 1 butternut squash and a six-pack each of golden beets and leeks.
I also thinned the radishes and harvested two huge overwintered leeks that were in the way. All lettuce and the cauliflower plants have chew holes but the inner leaves look healthy. The spinach is looking good, not too much pest damage. The peas are coming along and the garlic is looking strong. The carrots are a no-show again. Not sure what the problem is. I will wait a couple more weeks and then resow.
I harvested two fat overwintered leeks, baby spinach, small radishes (I thinned the row) and one asparagus spear. Tonight’s dinner will incorporate the radishes and the asparagus (together with other asparagus harvested a few days ago).
I had some seed potatoes left over from the garden plot and decided to try grow bags this year. I planted three potatoes (with 2 to 3 eyes each) in a 7-gallon grow bag and put them on the back porch. It is getting crowded there so I will likely move the bags to the front porch in the near future.
My local farmers market opened last weekend and at this time of the year there are a lot of seedlings on sale by Neighborhood Farm. I bought: leeks (six-pack), 1 eggplant Fairy Tale, 1 butternut squash, 1 Early Jedi jalapeno, 1 mini bell pepper (forgot the name and the label only says “Flavor”, so I am banking on that), and 4 tomato plants: Paul Robson, Pineapple (late-season), Green Zebra and Cosmonaut (early/mid-season). I planted the eggplant, the Paul Robeson tomato and the jalapeno in containers on my back porch. Everything else will go in the plot.
Tomatoes: I now have 7 plants for the garden plot. The remaining three plants I bought today and three surviving home-grown seedlings: Paul Robson (the Sand Hill variety, they can’t vouch that it is the exact variety and call it Poll Robson), Dr. Wyche Yellow, Green Zebra. I also started another Poll Robson very late, but it is still very small. Not sure if this seedling will make it. This will give me 6 or 7 tomato plants for the plot, which is plenty. I also staggered the varieties to prolong tomato season and will have 2 or 3 early-season, 1 mid-season and 3 late-season tomatoes.
A couple of nights ago, we enjoyed the first (partially) home-grown dinner of the season: fettuccine with sauteed asparagus and mushrooms in a garlicky lemon-feta sauce. The (purple!) asparagus came from my garden plot, the parsley from my back porch. Delicious!
I spent three hours in the garden today. What a beautiful spring day! I pulled some weeds, cleaned my rock & brick collection that I keep at the fence, and weeded out my stakes and supports. I thinned the spinach and the radishes and trellised the peas. I also planted: fingerling potatoes (finally!), more peas, more carrots, more Swiss Chard. I transplanted the cauliflower, parsley and lettuce I bought earlier this week. Towards the fence, I planted dahlias (Star Elite and Rip City), sunflowers, zinnias and cosmos.
Finally, spring is here. It has been so cold and wet these past weeks, everything in my garden is late. So far, I have only planted peas, spinach, radishes, carrots and lettuce in my plot. The rhubarb is coming up as are the first spears of asparagus.
I went to Allendale Farm this morning to get herbs for my back porch. I indeed got parsley, sage and thyme, but they were out of rosemary. I also got a six-pack each of basil, cauliflower and “Buttercrunch” head lettuce. I will plant a couple of the basil and lettuce cells in pots on my porch. The rest will go into my plot together with the cauliflower and some parsley.
I also got some flowers: lavender “Kew Red” and Osteospermum. Both are planted in containers on the back porch. And I purchased dahlia tubers (the one I overwintered in the basement did not survive – I forgot to keep them moist throughout the winter), garden twine, labels, environmentally-friendly insecticidal soap (to keep the aphids in check) and organic fish & seaweed fertilizer.