“Another Harvest Day”
E33 – W22
First things first … l received an email the other day asking “Why do you not simply create an actual gardening post over that of a story post about gardening? Other gardening blogs deal with gardening!”
Okay, well many thanks for your email – let’s see ….
I think the simplest way to answer this is as follows …. ‘I am NOT specifically a gardening blog – l am if anything a ‘storytelling composter who also gardens’. The tag line to my blog “A Guy Called Bloke” is “Storytelling My Life For You!” That is quite possibly quite a big giveaway hint. But also …. when is gardening or composting or being eco orientated or environmentally friendly or organically sustainable not about life? When is life not about having a story attached to it? I am at the very heart an avid story teller – l tell stories and reccount tales – my life is one big quirky travel story – one big adventure … every day is a journey – every day something else happens.
When l am out in the garden, l am not walking around like a robot either – most often l am talking to myself and thinking about things … l think most gardeners do … we garden, we ponder, we think and some might deliver points only to do with gardening or composting direct whilst others … well they tell stories …. l am of the latter breed.
Mondays have become a harvest day of sorts … it wasn’t intentional, more or less just something that seemingly happens on a Monday. It happened last Monday as well – ish, in truth the last small harvest was a Tuesday – but that is close to a Monday! The week before however was a Monday harvest!
Today l was harvesting green salads and we have a lot of salads – spinach, radish, giant mustard, Swiss chard, rainbow chard, turnip greens, wild rocket and pak choi.
All salads harvested are washed, drained off, and allowed to dry naturally before either being boxed ready to eat on the week, frozen for future use or shredded down for smoothies or future freezings for stir fry’s.
All the leaves grown each have a distinct flavour to them … the wild rocket leaves can vary in flavour pending their age – young and they are quite woody but nice and yet if you leave them longer to age a bit they become quite savoury and spicy and hot! Turnip and Radish leaves are sharp and spicy and hot and similar to that of Mustard greens. The chards and Spinach leaves taste all like spinach just with slight variations.
But today was all about harvest and yet having said that what follows looks like a lot but they were all small and partial harvestings only.
First two beds Radish, Pak Choi and Spinach with the second bed Wild Rocket – both beds only marginally harvested.
Second two beds Radish, Chard, Wild Rocket, Beetroot, Marigold, Chives and Spinach – doesn’t look like they have had much out – but mostly Radish leaves came out.
Of the three larger beds these two are the ones getting close to being harvested on the left we have spring onions, onions, kohl rabi and purple sprouting whilst the right has kale and onion and garlic – the latter will be ready towards the end of next month.
In truth the raised beds have been the best for harvested crop, this year most other containers have suffered for some reason and talking to Sam [my next door neighbour this afternoon] he is experiencing the same problems – we have put it down to the erratcness of the weathers at the start of May.
I have noticed significantly that certain vegetables when leaving the new greenouse have suffered with outdoor climatising and that is because the new greenhouse has a stabilised climate…. no winds, no sudden temperature drops unlike the garden.
The Carrot and the salad bar boxes are doing really well as are two Tomatillos that were planted last minute.
The back of the garden near the bug hotel has become a bit ramshackle – the neighbours tree now in full blossom and green leafed takes a lot of sun from this area and so the sun dappling and warmth strength is slight.
There is more here than might be seen first glance – the long troughs hold more salad mixes and chards and mustard greens. Whilst the bags hold potatoes, the containers hold horseradish and rhubarb and comfreys and borages and nasturtums.
Pak choi and spinach harvests.
How the start of the vegetable garden is looking on June 1st – spinach and pak choi at front. This area with the containers is seemingly struggling a little it holds, runner beans, courgettes and cucumbers and only in the last 2 days has it started to growth spurt. These particular plants have been rather slow to start in comparison to previous seasons when by June they would be much fuller plants.
Inside the greenhouse there are some cucumbers that are growing and growth wise are faring better than those outside – but overall – this season has been best described as the season of have no expectations – we have done seriously well on salads proving that there isn’t a problem with the beds or indeed the compost – but have had miserable times with the containers and that’s not through a lack of growth directly – more a case of much slower growth and that is only climatic and environmental.
Ava’s growth and health is a living testament to both the compost and the controlled environment of the new greenhouse.
In other parts of the garden there has been some great successes like with the roses … l love roses not so the hybrid strains as they don’t carry their scents – but originals keep their scents and these are crackers that smell terrific.
Other areas of the garden are also in full blossom and bloom, like the Lilac tree we brought with us in 2016 is experiencing it’s first full blossom this year. The palm trees and cacti that were pot bound when l first arrived in 2016 and l transplanted are looking fantastic and loving their new locations. All the different types of mints we grow are also now starting to blossom – liquorice and peppermint, spearments.
Anyway, there we go, another update from Project Garden, thanks for both visiting and reading! Catch you next time! Rory