Monday, February 5, 2018

Harvest Monday - February 5, 2018

The weather has taken a turn for the weird again. Or is it the new "normal". It's warm, warm, warm, and dry, dry, dry. The big "D" word is on our lips again. It's scary.

The garden continues to produce in spite of, or perhaps aided by, the weirdness.

Pink Lettucy Mustard
The Pink Lettucy mustard had quite a growth spurt. I barely blanched that bunch, just a quick dip in boiling water, and then chopped it and sauteed it with some minced garlic, tomato paste, and fermented Aji Angelo pepper flakes. They were a nice contrast to a couple of baked super sweet purple skinned white fleshed (name unknown) sweet potatoes that I bought at the farmer's market. That and some Duck and Mushroom sausage made for a delicious and filling Sunday Night Supper.

Gustus Brussels Sprouts
The Brussels sprouts look far more impressive in the photo than in reality.

Batavia Broccoli and Broccolini
Same goes for some broccoli and broccolini shoots.

Petite Snap Pea Greens
But the photo of the Petite Snap Greens leafy tendrils does them no justice. I've been enjoying those in salads and even stuffed some in a couple of veggie wraps that Dave and I enjoyed on a big hike this past Saturday.

Pink Plume Celery
I whacked the runty Pink Plume celery plants way back.

Bora King and Mini Purple Daikon Radishes
Here's a harvest that I was quite impressed with, and of course the photo does them no justice. These small daikon radishes may be small so far as daikon radishes go, but the roots alone average over 1/2 pound each. Nice. I saved the greens too since they are not at all prickly and should make a nice mess of sauteed greens.

Orion Fennel
And I got yet one more nice fennel bulb from the root that has been lingering in the garden for the better part of a year now and has a couple more bulbs coming along. Wow.

The chart below shows the high and low temperatures for the past week. The temperature scale is on the left. February? Winter? Really? The same is forecast for at least the next week. From the National Weather Service: "Still no clear indication of when we can expect to see the pattern substantially changing. Long range CFS and ECMWF continue to highlight a potential return to rain starting around the 20th." Rain in 2 weeks. Maybe. Elsewhere in the forecast is mention of "elevated fire weather concerns". Fire. February. F***. Unreal.

Be sure to head on over to Our Happy Acres where Dave has resumed as host for Harvest Monday. 


  1. That's an impressive variety of veggies for a February harvest! It's good to see the Pink Lettucy mustard and the Petite Snap Pea greens too. I've got the peas sprouting in the basement for use indoors and the mustard seed ordered. I also saved some of the pea seeds to grow them outdoors when the weather warms up. I like the smaller daikon radishes like Bora King also, and they seem to keep quite well in the frig. Plus they are versatile in the kitchen.

    1. It's good to know that the Bora King radishes keep well, they are going to size up in quick succession, too fast to use. I may try fermenting some to see if I like them that way and that would prolong their shelf life also.

      I think you'll like the Pink Lettucy mustard. I served them to my Dave and he isn't a big fan of strong tasting greens but I heard no complaints.

  2. I second the weird weather -- super dry winter, super hot winter. Fall crops are pretty indignant about it, so I gave up and just started planting squash and corn. When you can't beat 'em, join 'em right?

    Ok, when you said 1/2 a lb for those radishes... I mean, I believe you... but you're right, that photo doesn't do them justice at all. My eyes keep telling me the leaves are small, not that the roots are big. I spent a minute or so squinting at it like one of those optical illusion posters!

    Question about your pea greens -- do they put on side shoots after you trim the tops? I want to save a few of my accidental parsley peas for seed, but I'd also like to sample them a bit in salads, etc. Only two plants popped up as sports that display the multi-leaf trait. So I don't want to sample them to death by accident.

    1. I'm not quite ready to start sowing summer veggies yet, I'll stick with spring stuff for now. I know that May Gray, June Gloom, and No-sky July are on the way.

      I'll have to add something to the next radish photo shoot to give some perspective on their size.

      So far as the peas go. In my experience it depends on how mature the plants are. If you start trimming them back when the plants are young, say about 6 or 8 leaf nodes and before they start to bloom, then you can cut them back a few times and they will produce side shoots and some new shoots from the base of the plants. Cut them back to about 3 or 4 nodes. If the plants are already blooming then they will tend to put all their energy into those blooms and won't be inclined to produce new shoots. Cut them back too hard once they start blooming and they will probably mostly die.

  3. I third those sentiments you've expressed about the recent weather.

    I want to add another F word: fuels. With the little rain we've had, there will be good crops of grasses and other herbaceous material that will dry out soon.

    It is no accident that the largest fire in California history occurred where the drought is most critical - Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, not the desert.

    1. The only good thing about this dry winter is that the grasses i.e. fuels haven't had a chance to get huge, at least they aren't here, so that will lessen the fire danger when they dry out. The grasses are growing but they are definitely not as lush as they were last year. I think the biggest problem if we don't get any more rain is that the grasses will dry out sooner which means fire season starts sooner.

  4. We have the opposite wet, wet, wet. WE just don't seem to have much success with PSB which is shame as I love it!

    1. I've never had much success with PSB either, not so much because it doesn't grow, but but because it attracts hordes of aphids.

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  6. Wow! What lovely harvests you have Michelle...ooops that sounded a bit like a Little REd Riding Hood quote didn't it??? Sorry I missed you were hosting Harvest Monday and wondered where everyone had gone, so I am glad you are OK


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