Continuing on with our year of wacky weather, April seems to have returned to New England. We’ve had about 2 1/2 inches of rain in the past week, and on Monday we had a high temperature of 57 degrees! It’s hard to believe that in March we were worried about drought. Though we have had a few breaks of sunshine, there have been a lot of cloudy, dreary days lately. The tomatoes and peppers are growing slowly, but the greens don’t seem to mind this weather much. Continue reading
Well friends, the first of May is upon us and the garden is now in full swing. We had a beautiful, though windy, weekend and I spent most of Saturday and a few hours on Sunday working in the garden. Saturday was Spring Clean-Up day at the community garden, when the tool shed is cleaned out, the lawn mowers are tuned up, and the hoses are installed. Clean-Up Day is also the day when a couple of local farmers bring truckloads of bagged compost and bales of straw for gardeners to purchase. Continue reading
Things are really starting to happen now. The water doesn’t get turned on at the community garden until mid-April. Normally this isn’t a problem since we’re usually knee deep in mud this time of year, but our last significant rainfall was on March 3rd. This means ever since I planted my peas I’d been hauling a couple of watering cans and whatever containers I can find around the house to the garden each day, and my peas and spinach were getting just barely enough water to stay alive. I wasn’t sure if my poor little perennial herbs were going to make it. As you can probably imagine, the email I got at the end of last week announcing that the water had been turned on was pretty much the most exciting email I’ve received in a long time.
Now that they’re getting enough water, the peas are noticeably taller every day. I’ve enjoyed fresh spinach for dinner twice now. What a treat after a steady diet of kale for the past six months! I’m ready to not eat kale for a long time now. On Saturday I transplanted my lettuce, mixed greens, kale, and chard from the cold frame. I sowed beets and carrots too. I’m hoping to plant my leeks and onions this weekend. There’s still more brown than green in the garden, but now I have something growing in each of the beds.
In early March I started several kinds of lettuce, red Russian kale, chard, tat soi, and two different packets of mixed greens. I sowed them thickly in big containers, the idea being that I would eat the thinnings while they were in the cold frame, and whatever was left could be planted out in the garden. Now the cold frame is packed with greens that are ready to be transplanted. I’m hoping to get them in the ground this weekend. In the mean time I’ve been going through and snipping off leaves once a week or so, and enjoying the most delicious salads of baby greens. This afternoon I harvested two big handfuls of greens, which we proceeded to eat one leaf at a time, straight out of the salad spinner. This salad is so fresh and delicious, it doesn’t even need any dressing.