31 May 2018

ursulas_alcove: 19th century engraving of a woman using a drop spindle (Default)
Lacinato kale, Russian/Siberian Kale, and collards - Wonder if I planted too much? I started in February with 10 seeds each. The final yield was 8 plants of each. So 24 plants needed homes. I tucked some behind the parsnips, the shady spot in the mandala garden, and some more in the Kuiper Belt. We are going to try kale chips for the first time. The slaw was okay but not the best. If no one likes the chips, then we don't have to plant these again. Lacinato kale and Georgia Collards came from the MI Gardener. The Russian/Siberian Kale came from a company called The Seed Library, which has beautiful artwork on their packages. We get them through the food co-op.

More collards and kale transplanted

There were eight of ten celery that germinated in the soil blocks, also in February. I put three in with the tomatoes, one in the herb spiral, and three in the front yard garden. So seven made it so far. They all came from the MI Gardener's Utah Celery seed packet. We were also able to root two from store-bought organic celery. Those are living in pots outside. They succomb easily to fungus gnats. Outside, the soil dries out quicker and the gnats have predators. I am thinking that celery can be dried for storage as well as used fresh. The seeds can be used as well for seasoning, great in chicken salad.

Planting store bought celery ends
Planting store bought celery ends

Also in the tomato section of Middle Earth, I added one Zapotec Pleated Tomato. The seed was really old. Only one germinated out of eight. This heirloom variety is prone to splitting and then getting buggy. We'll see how it does.

Blue Cherokees went in today

The Red Speckled Romaine Lettuce, Rouge d'Hiver from Botanical Interests has been our go-to lettuce. The slugs leave it alone. We planted in soil blocks back at the end of February. It was rough for any of our lettuce to survive while I was at Gulf Wars. I planted three other kinds. None made it. So of ten blocks planted, six or seven of the red have survived. Crop losses include Hanson's Improved, which really didn't germinate. Bibb lettuce which did well until fungus gnats hit us in April. Really, the cold that hit us in April delayed planting too long. If we had a high tunnel or cold frame, the Bibb would have survived. I also planted a Red Sails and a Bronze lettuce. The bronze is the other long row that didn't germinate in the picture. All were from the MI Gardener. Some of the Red Sails could also be the same as the Rouge d'Hiver because I planted both and they look alike. I just planted more, direct sow, outside. We are having lettuce daily on sandwiches from the transplants. More had been in our winter garden which already went to seed. I need to remember to plant lettuce every two weeks all summer for a constant supply.

Time to transplant these seedlings

I planted the rest of the Leeks in with the potatoes. Today's planting included 3 American Flag (MI Gardener) and one Good King Henry from Botanical Interests. The yield of American Flag was really good. The Good King Henry seeds were from last year, so naturally the germination rates were poor. There were nine planted yesterday. So a total of 12 Am. flag and 1 King Henry. I followed Luke's onion planting method for them on YouTube. I transplanted them as well after 2-3 weeks growth into individual containers. I am pleased. There are a couple more King Henry's that I planted last fall outside. All in all, a good quantity.

Bookcase garden gets new residents
9 American Flag Leeks in the front

Yellow Spanish Onions from MI Gardener, I planted a lot. They all grew. I still need to find homes for some of them. None got planted today. There could be over fifty onions kicking around the yard by the time I'm through. Harvest will be like an Easter egg hunt. I tried putting some into a container garden but then the sky spigot got turned on. There was over 2" of water in the container by the time I rescued it. Oops! Have to wait and see if they survive. So far, I know where 10 of them are. Six in the front yard garden with the potatoes and 4 with the lettuce. There are probably some in the NE Mandala garden, maybe. Also a few in the Kuiper belt, at least 2. And a flat and a half outside waiting for a home.

Onions transplanting

More amaranth went out today. That, milk thistle, nasturtiums, and pink calendula got added to the secret garden. It needed flowers to draw pollinators. The deer got one of my amaranth out from under the skirret. We found a small red stem sticking out of the ground.

So secret, I forgot what I planted

The SE mandala got weeded today. We found a couple of beets that finally came up. Also found wild indigo, maybe, along the mailman's path. I pulled tons of creeping charlie from the fence line. Took the neighbor's rotted fence boards, full of arsenic, and piled them with others already in her yard. Don't want those near my food. Another happy surprise was the Shungiku, Japanese chrysanthemums, that reseeded. The new blueberry died. It rotted from all the rain. So I took its cage and staked it around the volunteer tomatoes that showed up in the mandala garden. No clue how they got there or what kind they are. Trimming along the backyard log terraces happened before the rain in preparation for planting next to the garage. Chrono says I can have the animal kennel fence from the plum to block the deer in the corn patch. The plum is big enough now to defend itself against deer. So corn is next on the planting list. Making more potato bags is on the list. Making tomato cages is too. Two more potato grow bags got planted today.

The mobile potato garden

More rose petals got harvested. I need to get my butt out back to pick honeysuckle blooms. They are great for winemaking. I will probably freeze them. So far so good. Another week before goumi's are ready to pick, 2 weeks before purple beans are ready, and three weeks on garlic. Not sure on the mulberries or black raspberries. Soon though. Fruit is set but green. Good eats!

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