Salad Season is Here!
Every day, rain or shine, as long as the baby has an easy time going down for her first nap (between 8 and 9am) I head out with the baby monitor clipped to my pocket and do a walk of the farm. Today I noticed that we have our first few strawberries beginning to grow! This is so exciting because it is a reminder that summer is right around the corner.
The rhubarb has been growing and filling in really nicely but a small amount of the stalks have unfortunately suffered some slug damage. There is plenty of usable food left when this happens, but these stalks just aren't as visually appealing. I was thinking that I could offer rhubarb "seconds" for $1/lb and have the prettier stuff for $2/lb, but it will be so much easier to just have it all at $1.50/lb. So that's what you've got!
Salad season is really here now with the first of our mixed greens here. I love this mix because it is bold and peppery, and as I've said before it doubles as cooking greens for soups and pastas. Our early French Breakfast-style radishes are getting ready and will be $2/bunch. The greens are perfectly delicious as well (although the chickens are bonkers for them so I have to share!). The greens mellow when sautéed with garlic and then scrambled with eggs. If you aren't sure that you like raw radishes, give these a try because they're very mild, slightly sweet with the peppery and bitter notes. I like them with butter and salt. If you still don't like them raw, I recommend that you roast them with butter and a good amount of salt. Roasting brings out the natural sugars in vegetables.
The peas are coming along beautifully. Our favorite sugar snap pea, Sugar Ann, is the tallest with some close to 10 inches tall already. Maybe another month until we start harvesting them. Our shelling peas are a bit slower to grow but that's to be expected.
The rain has been playing out well with us getting a gentle and temperate shower every 3 days or so. This is perfect for the garden because it gives things a chance to dry off in between and prevents over-watering. But combined with the mild days and nights, it makes for optimal growing conditions. The kohlrabi is growing quickly and we're starting to see the stems bulge. The kale, cabbage, and broccoli are also growing very well.
We've had great germination rates on cucumbers, melons, and summer squash so far. Watermelon and winter squash have just started to emerge in the past few days but they're growing very fast thanks to the weather conditions. Beans also continue to thrive right now. Our first crop will most definitely be Dragon Tongue, which looks very funky but happens to mature relatively early and also stays tender even when the pods get gigantic. We've found that many traditional green beans get very woody and tough if forgotten on the plant.
Last weekend we planted our third successions of staple crops like snap beans, beets, carrots, kohlrabi, mixed greens, and radishes. We also put up posts for our tomato, cucumber, melon, and pole bean trellises. We're really fighting to maximize our space this year!
It's already getting to be the time to sow our fall crops of broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, and storage kohlrabi. That will be happening this coming weekend.