Want to see more of my garden? The new weekly Friday Farm Fix series on Farmgirl Fare usually includes lots of kitchen garden photos.
Realization of the Day:
Eating from the garden makes everything taste better, even if your harvest is just a sprinkling of chives or a handful of parsley.
There isn't a whole lot of bounty in the garden yet, but during the past week we enjoyed plenty of beautiful (and big!) salads, as well as chopped green onions on just about everything. If all goes well, it won't be long before I'm digging up the first new potatoes, harvesting the garlic, and picking my favorite Dragon Langerie (also called Dragon Tongue) beans. And the arugula and Parris Island cos lettuce are almost ready to start thinning and tossing into salads.
The weather has been crazy hot and way too dry (thanks to my super lightweight Water Right garden hoses I no longer dread watering the garden!), but we did finally get a little rain yesterday. Just about 4/10ths of an inch, but I'll take it. At least it settled all the dust.
Like what you see growing in my garden? The links included below can help you grow the same things in yours.
Into the kitchen during the past week:
Chives (Learn how to grow chives here, plus my easy herbed yogurt cheese recipe.)
Green onions and spring onions (read about why I now grow onions from purchased plants here)
Italian flat leaf parsley (here's the best way to store fresh parsley)
Lettuce (I picked the entire 4'x8' bed of my favorite Rocky Top Lettuce Mix from Baker Creek before it all went bitter from the heat; learn how to grow your own gourmet lettuce from seed here).
Red Russian kale (from a couple of last spring's plants; photo below)
Swiss chard (amazingly heat and cold tolerant; learn how to grow Swiss chard from seed here)
Tuscan kale (also called Lacinato kale, dinosaur kale, and Nero di Toscana cabbage; one enormous plant direct seeded last fall)
And into the garden:
Four Golden California Wonder sweet pepper plants (purchased; tips for planting and growing peppers here)
Five Roma tomato plants (four purchased, one volunteer from last year I'd dug up and put into a small container)
Eight eggplant plants (purchased; the tag just says 'classic' which cracks me up)
I have several more varieties of tomato plants that still need to go into the ground (both purchased and started from seed), another four Golden California Wonder pepper plants (purchased), and a bunch of leggy little purple basil seedlings I grew from seed that desperately need to be transplanted into individual plugs (I think they're still too small to go straight into the garden, especially with this heat).
I'm also hoping to plant some more green bean seeds and am wondering if I should try direct seeding some cucumber seeds this time, since the soil is plenty warm and my first two attempts at starting them in flats (including 4 different varieties of all brand new seeds) yielded nothing for some reason. I don't think I've ever had trouble sprouting cucumber seeds before. The basil, calendula, and zinnia seeds didn't do squat either.
Twelve more garden photos below. . .
1. Harvesting basil from two purchased plants. Just take what you need, and they'll keep growing back.
2. 4'x8' bed with chives, King Arthur and Orange Sun Bell sweet peppers, basil, Italian flat leaf parsley, and an experiment—heat tolerant Parris Island cos lettuce and arugula direct seeded in between the plants.
3. Yukon gold and 'red' potato plants planted in mid-March from seed potatoes purchased locally at the supermarket (either they didn't know or didn't care what variety the red ones were).
4. Into the holes when transplanting tomatoes: calcium mineral mix (stolen from the sheep), granulated kelp, epsom salt, aspirin tablets, eggshells, compost.
5. Grass clippings for mulch, saved on a tarp (located on an unplanted raised bed to keep weeds from growing) until needed.
6. Mulching around the newly planted tomatoes next to the greenhouse with feed sacks (and Mr. Midnight).
7. Red Russian kale (also called Ragged Jack kale), directed seeded last spring and still putting out plenty of bounty.
8. A new little herb bed with (so far) lemon thyme, English thyme, and lavender.
9. The garlic is looking great! A 4'x8' bed planted with 160 homegrown cloves on 10/22/11.
10. Dwarf Siberian kale going to seed on the left, stalk from giant Tuscan kale plant (in case it grows back), mixed variety of Swiss chard direct seeded this spring.
11. Dragon Langerie (also called Dragon Tongue), Slenderette, and Masai bush beans.
12. Harvesting 4'x8' bed of Rocky Top lettuce mix from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, direct seeded in late March.
13. About one-third of what I cut.
So what's going into and out of your garden?
© FarmgirlFare.com, where this time of year lettuce is sometimes served three times a day.