The radio said that San Francisco
had zero rain during January. I remember a couple of times during
the month going out there and feeling like the ground was wet
enough that I didn't need to water. It wasn't that unusual an
experience, because plants slow down their growing a lot in chilly
weather. Maybe a couple of times (at the most) precipitation had
something to do with why I didn't water, but not much. It' hasn't
been that cold, so I have gotten some growth. Still eating a lot
of my greens. Usually it's in a soup, so I'm thinking of this as a
soup garden right now. Soup!
The collard plants along the back of
my plot are just beginning to produce reliably. The purple one got
most of it's canes broken by the windstorm we had around Christmas
time. Now it's recovered enough to start yielding a leaf per crown
per harvest cycle. Sometimes I have to skip a cycle, but that's
okay. The further green one has finally healed up from being
transplanted off the plant it started on. The smaller green one is
young. It's growing from one of the seeds that accidentally fell
off the plants that went to seed. So excited about that!
Those pink and yellow chards are all
that still give me soup greens from the bag of New Zealand chard
seeds I planted a couple of years ago. Neither of them give me
that much plant matter, but both of them reliably give me more. I
have many memories of putting those leaves in soups.
Those pitiful spinach stalks
sticking out of the ground with vestigial green leafiness on them
had been healthy spinach plants when I planted them the day
before. Baby spinach is yummy to some critter. I don't think it's
the snails because I put down snail bait before nightfall right
after I planted them. I think it's the birds.
My collards continue to give me lots
of leafy goodness. I still eat a couple of pounds of greens from
my collard plants every week. If I eat much more than that I start
getting interested in giving away the next harvest to someone
else. I have several customers who are grateful for a serving
every now and then. Marci still likes getting the chopped stems
for her compost pile. Those plants have several friends.
I'm having my best beet harvests
I planted one bag of beet seeds.
After plenty of starts came up I transplanted into other spots
around the garden until I ran out of beets that needed to move to
relieve crowding. Ended up with three patches of beets to water.
They have been getting better and better as I harvest. I pick the
beet that does the most shading of other plants every time I make
a soup. That plus the ready to harvest chard leaves is plenty for
a weekday lunch soup. I get several of those every week. So good!
I got a nice collection of red onion
seedlings. I spread those around in three patches. You can see one
of those above and another below. Funny enough, the other patch is
doing the best. All are doing well though. Joyce a couple of plots
over thinks they will be ready to harvest in March or April. I
harvested one as a green onion, but the bulb at the bottom said
"I'm way too small to be done yet." So now I'm leaving them alone
for a while.
Those chard plants yield leaves that
are so yummy in soup! If you have other chard recipes please let
me know about them... Judy thinks that lacy pattern on the yellow
stemmed one is caused by snails eating the flesh. I put down snail
bait after it happened. We'll see if it helps.
Thanks to Dana for that celery
plant. I haven't been harvesting much, but every now and then I
pull off a stalk or two and add that to my next soup after
chopping it. Yup. It adds celery flavor, just like store bought.