Friday, May 4, 2012

Rain, Rain, Rain

I might not appreciate the cool wet weather, but the plants sure have. I've used the damp weather to transplant some seedlings that were direct seeded in the garden. My zinnias and mustards came up just fine, but there were a couple of places that were bare. So I transplanted the crowded section into the bare section. With all the wet weather I didn't even bother to water them in after.

The greens have just taken off in this weather. This is the spring planted spinach. So pretty.

I decided to pick half of the spinach. This is halfway through that process. I had two sections of spring planted lettuce. The first is the part closest to the bottom. It was seeded in February, but the soil in the farther section was still frozen, so it went in later. I figure that farther section will get all picked down next week. And I'll alternate front and back until they all start to bolt. Well it is a plan anyway. Not sure if it will actually get followed.

The spring spinach has such perfect leaves compared to the over wintered spinach that was pulled out on Tuesday. Even the stems aren't tough. I gave a pound to my townhouse mates and kept a pound in the fridge. But the other two pounds were blanched and frozen. If the good spinach harvests keep up, I won't need to freeze any chard this summer.

Back to front: Joi Choi, Kolibri Kohlrabi, Soloist Chinese Cabbage, Komatsuna

I peeked under the brassica row cover which contains mostly Asian greens. Not the cover with the smaller choys, but the one with the big ones.

I noticed the Komatsuna (on the right) was growing so fast it was pushing the poor Soloist Chinese Cabbage (on the left) to one side. So I harvested all the big leaves off of the six plants. I planted them only six inches apart in hopes it would keep them smaller. No such luck. Big gorgeous leaves. I'll have to keep an eye on them and pick them regularly so the Chinese cabbage has a chance of heading up.

Just past that section in the same 4'x8' bed. I have three Early Jersey cabbage. Well I had three. Now I have two. There is just that one leaf hanging off one plant that was taken down by what seems to be a cutworm. It was pretty obvious damage from the worm. But I dug all around the cabbage and couldn't find it. I wanted my revenge, but I was foiled. I rarely have trouble finding the sneaky thieves. At least the other two plants seem fine.

At the end of this bed are my two Michihili Chinese cabbage. Last year they got three feet wide. So this year I gave them lots of space. I put in Japanese turnips around the outside. Hopefully the turnips will be picked before the cabbages really take over. Last year when I saw these plants growing in my garden I vowed to never grow them again as they were way too big. But then I tasted them. I think they are my favorite Chinese cabbage of all time. So so good. They have just the right amount of sweetness and mustardy flavor. I hope they are as good this year.

The romaine lettuce was getting way to big. So I took out two of the heads in the middle to let the rest grow. There are some Red Sails lettuce above these and I took one head of those out too. Oh and these romaines are probably Paris Island. I'm guessing though. These were self seeded and overwintered in the garden path. Early in spring I transplanted them to the bed. They were the easiest lettuce seedlings ever.
< br/> And then there were the radishes. I had such a pretty photo of four flaming red radishes all lined up pushing out of the soil. But of course that one turned out too blurry. I even took more than one photo and none of them came out. It is pretty dark with all the clouds and drizzle. But I guess I shouldn't be complaining since the plants are growing so well. The only thing that needs it slightly warmer is the corn. The bed is right now at 50F. I think I might be planting some seed on Saturday when it clears up in the afternoon.


  1. Oh! Your greens with rain drops look so great!!!!!!

  2. Everything looks really great. Lots of salad stuff. It looks so much better than mine. We tend to get these packets of salad seeds and it is harder to get them separate unless you order from a seed company.

  3. It is all so pretty. So many greens for yummy salads. I a finally harvesting lots of spinach for my salads. Maybe eventualy I will get enough to freeze some? Nancy at Cozy Thyme Cottage

  4. Now I officially hate you. It's the spinach. Mine disappears, and yours is so perfectly perfect! OK, I don't really hate you, but I'm jealous.

  5. The garden path romaine is so nice!

  6. I know the rain is good for the garden, but does it have to be good for the weeds too???? Your spinach looks terrific! I can taste it.....

  7. I'm envious of your spinach, they look so nice and healthy not to mention abundance harvest. Some day I'll get it, this vegetable is a huge challenge for me to grow.

  8. It is my best spinach harvest ever. I had some trouble growing it at my last garden with clay soil. Maybe it likes my sandy soil? Last year I had huge gaps in the spinach bed due to damping off issues. This year I didn't get that and there are just a few small gaps. I bought tons of seed so I could reseed several times just in case. It looks like I'll have seed to toss out after next year. I never keep spinach seed more than two years.

  9. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!!!!!! Your spring greens are just so pretty and I'm sure the thinnings tasted great. =)

  10. Wow, do you have greens! They are all gorgeous.

  11. The plants are all so beautiful and healthy (well except the one mowed down by the cutworm!). Your garden soil and the plants themselves are obviously very healthy from your good care. Your greens crops are further along then most of mine and I suspect your spell of early warm weather really helped with that result. Hopefully we will warm up a bit and stay there more consistently soon so that my greens too can get more size on them.

  12. They look beautiful. I love the greens-after-rain experience.

  13. Daphne,
    Your spinach is amazing. What variety do you plant? Do you broadcast it or plant in rows? Seed spacing? Thanks,

    1. I plant in rows 6" apart and put seed about 1-2" apart and thin to 6" once they are established. Half the spinach is Tyee and half is Olympia.