Friday, May 18, 2012


Today was a day devoted to harvesting. I like to harvest my greens before any hot weather comes in and the next two days will be around 80F(27C). Mostly what I harvested were the chenopodias. In my garden that means spinach and chard. The chard above had grown big and really needed harvesting. In previous years I'd done a block of chard across the bed. But let me tell you, it is so much easier to have it all the way along the edge. This way I just have to lift up one side of the row cover and don't have to do both. How many years has it been to figure this out?

There all nice and chopped down and you can see the broccoli on the other side of the bed. Now I have to do something with five pounds of chard. Hmm do you think I planted too much?

The earliest planted of the spring spinach was starting to bolt. It won't be long before the rest will be bolting too. Spinach starts to bolt once the day length gets long enough. I forget how long, but years ago I calculated that it was May 15th at our latitude which is 42 degrees. So no matter the weather it isn't long before it will all get ripped out. This time I just harvested the first half of the bed that is the earliest planted ones.

I'll do the rest later. I find that a harvest of half of the bed is perfect for me as I can blanch and freeze most of it in one batch. Then keep the leftovers for the rest of the week. And I usually use it mostly up. After this batch I'll have 26 individual servings of spinach frozen. I'll need about 36 of spinach and chard to give me two per week during the winter and early spring months. So I have 10 to go. And way too much chard. Way way too much chard. Usually the spinach doesn't produce as well as it has this year. And I need the chard to fill in the gap over the summer. But not this year. Once I'm done I think I'll need about 5 servings of chard to freeze and that is nothing.

Ahhhhhhhhhhh! I appreciate the spiders in my garden doing their job. But I freak out with spiders. Usually they run away when I start moving the plants around. This one just sat there. And it has a leg span of about an inch and a half so it was huge too. Well huge for our area of the country. I've seen those spiders you get down south and the ones in the desert.

I also harvested some Asian greens. Yesterday I noticed the choy sum was starting to flower. Whoops I waited a bit too long. Usually I harvest it when it is in bud. The earlier picking was really bad. The early hot weather this spring made it small and tough. This one was held inside until the weather cooled down (really I shouldn't have to say that in the spring). Then planted it. We have had great spring greens weather since with only a little bit of too hot weather over the weekend. These stalks are as good as the fall choy sum that I harvest. They are almost an inch in diameter and tender and delicious.

Yum! Steamed then dressed with just soy sauce. I'll be giving a lot of my other greens away, but not my choy sum. This is mine. Though I did share a little with my daughter. I gave her all she would take. Choy sum isn't really her thing. She is really waiting for the broccoli.


  1. hmmm.. that spider looks like brown recluse so please be careful around them.

    1. Ahhhhhhhhhh! I don't get near any of them. But if I'd known I would have squashed him. I got him to move out of my spinach with a four foot pole. Well a four foot piece of rebar. I guess being scared of spiders can be a good thing.

  2. Scary spider. I was thinking Brown Recluse also. Don't get bitten!

  3. Yummy! I'm thinking of Tatsoi for dinner tonight with some cod. Spiders freak me out too!

  4. Those are some pretty greens. I grew chard for the first time this year. Not as much as you, though! I have no idea what to do with it. What is your favotite way to cook it?

  5. Wow, you have harvested a lot of greens. I wouldn't need that many since we don't eat it that often.

  6. That's a LOT of greens. I tend to think that most chard is "too much" chard.

  7. i thought the spider was a wolf spider--they like gardens.

  8. My spinach was slow to start this year and is likely going to be bolting quickly - so not going to get a spectacular spinach harvest this spring. I don't think it liked the location I put it in. Will put the fall crop in a different area altogether and see if I can do better with the second crop.