Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter

Colored eggs and tulips. Yep, it must be Easter. Now if only I had croquet wickets and my extended family from past generations here.

My potatoes and peas are peeking out as well, so that confirms it: chilly or not, spring is well underway. I truly hope for rain today so I don't have to water the vegetable beds, but not until after I have cleaned the chicken coop. I sound a bit demanding weather wise, don't I?

Hope you all have a lovely spring day too!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Got to use those eggs...

Sticky buns made with challah dough full of the ladies eggs and yolks. Goo made with our honey (I still have some even though the hives are gone). A trick i learned at ICE baking class: a toping of half honey and half brown sugar tastes amazing and stays somewhat soft. Oh, and the pecans are from only one state away! These were a three full inches high this morning, and so very very good.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Shady blooms

Spring comes to the heavily shaded garden bed under my house. That is the worm bin beside the holly fern.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Best dinner ever

Lactino kale and eggs, straight from the backyard to the pans. Amazing, fresh, homemade sausage, a gift from a friend. Yum, yum, yummm.

I was able to get lettuces, arugula, and peas planted just before dark this evening. I hope it rains tomorrow, as forecast! If it does, these new plantings will be jump started, and those potatoes from last week may pop through the soil even sooner.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Spring planting begins

I'm a little late for planting potatoes here, but still within the planting window. I tend to be a bit flexible, within reason, and not too hard on myself on planting dates, as the garden is not the only thing going on in my world. The important thing is that spring potatoes and spinach and lettuce are now out in the garden beds!

I cut the potatoes into chunks two days ago, making sure each piece had at least one eye, where new plant growth will begin. The cut piece in this photo has two visible eyes: one is the huge, obvious one where growth has started in ernest, the other is tiny, just beside the cut edge down near the bottom of the photo. Seethe little bumps, just lightly green, just above the tear in the skin? It would have been fine even if only the tiny eye had been present, it just would have taken a bit longer before the new plant emerged.

Here you see the three slightly trenched rows I dug in the bed for the potatoes. The rows are about two feet apart, and the seed potatoes were placed about 10 inches apart within each row. In the photo they were placed just for spacing, when I went back and buried each (about 3 inches deep at the bottom of the trench; I will then cover them with more soil as they grow), I made sure that the cut side was down and the skin side, and eyes, were facing up.

I also planted two types of lettuce, buttercrunch and a nice red leaf lettuce, plus spinach transplants. They are in the bed with one of the remaining lactino kale plants and one chard plant. It wasn't until I looked at this photo that I realized the kale is preparing to bolt ( go to seed). See the tiny flower head forming in the very center at the top? It will have to come out soon, leaving room for a second planting of lettuces.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Is parsley a vegetable?

My volunteer parsley, seeded naturally by plants of prior years, has gone wild. I have a full bed, 4x8, full of parsley. It is two feet deep! That's a lot of garnish, so I have to think of some better uses. Now parsley is by far the freshest tasting of any leafy green I grow, and with spring in the air I want that clean, new taste. My first effort: tabbouleh! I jazzed it up with raw garlic and red pepper flakes, and used my own orangequat juice in place of lemon. It was great!