Monday, July 2, 2012

Harvest Monday - July 2, 2012

It was the week for the broccoli. I harvested the small main heads last Monday.

The bulk of the side shoots came hard on the heels of the main heads. I put off harvesting them as long as possible but I harvested these yesterday.

The Apollo broccoli does produce an abundance of side shoots, but the harvests come very quickly and  I suspect that there won't be a lot more to harvest after this. It is a tasty broccoli and I do like the size of the side shoots so I am willing to try to figure out a growing schedule for this variety, at least until I use up the rest of the expensive seeds. I think I will have to figure out a shedule for successive sowings with fewer plants. Three and a half pounds of broccoli in one week is a bit more than I want to have to deal with at one time. This harvest came from only four plants that I set out close together. I'm going to try sowing 2 or 3 plants at 2 or 3 week intervals for the rest of the season. It will be interesting to see how the harvest changes as the days get shorter and later in the season as the days get cooler as well.

The Sweetie Baby romaine lettuce is coming on fast as well and so far it is not showing signs of bolting. The head above was used for a couple of my almost daily lunch salads. I prepped the entire head for salad but only used half one day and put the rest of the cut strips of lettuce in the refrigerator. When I made a salad with it the next day, or maybe it was two days later, it seemed that the refrigerated lettuce had sweetened up quite a bit, not that it was at all bitter to begin with. Hmm, I'll have to try that again if the lettuce seems to be getting bitter. The two heads below were used to make a big Caesar salad that accompanied some Dungeness crab that we got from our CSF last week.

My variegated pink lemon tree is producing a few lemons this year and I used one of them to prepare the dressing for the Caesar salad.

The juice of the lemon is truly pink and it's tart and tasty as well.

Here's one of my caper harvests this week. Two and one half ounces of buds.

Here's what the capers look like after they have been cured. Fresh capers taste horrible and must be cured to develop their characteristic flavors and remove the horrible bitterness of the raw buds. These buds were harvested in May and brined for about a month, then drained and packed with some coarse sea salt. These will keep in the refrigerator for well over a year. I'm still using buds that I cured last year.

The filet bean and snow pea harvests continued through the week but I didn't photograph any of those. The snow peas are about finished producing. Those came on very quickly also, I was expecting a longer harvest period (only two weeks!), but the pods were getting thick while they were still quite small and each successive harvest produced smaller and smaller pods, and now the plants are finished blooming all together. I don't know if that is typical for this variety or if it is because I am growing them so late in the season. I'll give them another try this fall and see how they do then. But now I'll be able to pull the plants and set out another sowing of the filet beans (already sown in paper pots). The filet beans have been a delight. I've harvested enough to enjoy them fresh and got just enough last week to make a batch, no, two batches, of pickles and the plants are still producing.

Here's the harvests for the past week:

Rolande filet beans - 1 lb., 15.2 oz.
Apollo broccoli - 3 lb., 8 oz.
Capers - 5 oz.
Lark's Tongue kale - 3.7 oz.
Sweetie Baby romaine lettuce - 1 lb., 12.4 oz.
Parade scallions - .6 oz.
Oregon Sugar Pod II snow peas - 3 lb., 4.3 oz.

The total harvests for the week were - 11 lb., 1.2 oz.
Which brings the total harvests for the year up to - 52 lb., 14.8 oz.

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne on her blog Daphne's Dandelions, head on over there to see what other garden bloggers have been harvesting lately.


  1. Beautiful broccoli. And I love the lemons. I've never seen that variety before.

  2. What a fantastic crop so far! And the pictures make everything all the more appealing!

  3. I generally get a lot of side shoots on the Apollo if the weather is favorable. This spring, it's not done as well. It does better in fall here. I did get 5 main heads all at once. We were eating a lot of broccoli for a few days! I love the taste of this one so much I keep growing it.

    I had no idea there was such a thing as a pink lemon!

  4. I'm going to have to give Apollo a try. I've been growing packman for a couple of years now and the heads just don't get big enough. Your 3 to 4 pounds was more than we harvested all season from 10 plants. Thanks for the suggestion.

  5. I love that you've included the capers - I'm still on the lookout for a plant. Its frustrating as I know they are grown here (well in South Australia anyway) but I've never come across a plant for sale.

  6. You know, you really inspired me on the beans. I've been greatly enjoying the pickles I've made from your recipe.

  7. I am going to have to track down some seed for that Apollo broccoli. The side shoots are really impressively sized. Does the pink lemon make pink lemonade? i.e. does the juice hold that color?

  8. I grew Apollo broccoli last year, and had the same problem as you - it all matured at once, which is not what I want.

  9. That's a lot of broccoli for one week! I think your strategy to stagger plantings sounds right. I really like your capers. I once got a package of Spanish capers packed in salt rather than brine. We enjoyed them but I haven't found a source since.

  10. that is interesting about the capers; a bit like olives it seems.

  11. Oh man...your lemons looks amazing! So cool!

  12. This looks like a wonderful harvest - lovely broccoli and the lemon is beautiful. I've never seen that variety before. I'm very envious of your capers! My plants are doing well and developing into nice little bushes - ready to be put in bigger pots I think, but no flowers yet. But then they're only two years old so I must be patient!

  13. Have you tried nasturtium bud "capers?" I've seen a few recipes, and they sound interesting.

    1. I've never tried nasturtium bud capers. I wonder if they can be cured like caper buds....


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