5 May Weekly Update

Those Dang Voles!!

We continue to have vole predation despite our poisoning efforts.  They got about ½ of our Danver’s carrots and about ¼ of our Little Finger carrots.  We reseeded the Danver’s in the bare areas but it’s pretty late in the season for us to be seeding carrots.  We didn’t reseed the Little Fingers because we need that box for field peas before the carrots would mature.  The box the Danver’s are in is slated to be a Fall planting box so the carrots will have time to mature before we need it.  We are not amused with the voles.

Harvests this week were: a huge head of cauliflower (!!), beets and beet greens, kale, mustard, lettuce, asparagus, radishes, the last of the overwintered purple mustard, and mung beans sprouted using the mason jar method.

Asparagus & Mustard

Asparagus & Mustard

Cauliflower, Kale & Beets

Cauliflower, Kale & Beets

Mung Bean Sprouts

Mung Bean Sprouts

Radishes & Purple Mustard

Radishes & Purple Mustard

Lettuce

Lettuce

When I pulled up the cauliflower plant after cutting off the head to take it over to the compost pile, I couldn’t believe how much it weighed!  At least 20 pounds.  The plant was huge.  Out of curiosity, I weighed the head:  3.23 pounds!  Wow!!  Since we’ve had so much cauliflower lately, I took to the internet to find some recipes and we made this on Saturday evening:  http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/cauliflower-curry  It was quite good so we wanted to share the link in case others are looking for some cauliflower ideas.  I wouldn’t exactly call it a “curry” in the way I think of curries, but the flavor was quite good.  Our only deviation from the recipe was that we decided to wedge and then roast the tomato before adding it to the dish.

I also went ahead and pulled up the beets since we need the bed they were growing in for hot peppers and I wanted to get to them before the voles did.  Only one of the beets could even be considered a real beet (as in size) and a few could be called “baby beets” but others were just nubbins.  Most of them are going into the juicer whole along with the greens, so we’re not unhappy with them.  But something that we are a bit disappointed in is the asparagus bed.  We expected to get much more asparagus from it than we have this year.  We planted 2 year old crowns in March 2011 so they’re 4 years old now.  Several of them must have died since a portion of the bed has produced no spears.  But I thought each crown would produce many more spears than we’ve gotten (we’ve cut only about 2 spears per crown – about ½ of the spears each crown has produced).  I’ll have to do some research to figure out if this level of production is typical or whether we have underachieving plants.

Transplanted Peppers

Transplanted Peppers

Other tasks accomplished this week were transplanting out the four eggplant (and covering them with a lightweight garden fabric until they are large enough to better withstand flea beetles) and butternut squash, starting another large container of parsley (we really like to make a chimmichurri sauce with it), fertilizing the garlic and onions with fish emulsion (we’re trying to be diligent about doing this every 3 weeks this year!), seeding basil, and planting out most of the pepper plants.  A few of the pepper plants are still in the basement until they size up a bit more.  We ended up purchasing a total of 12 pepper plants from the local garden center since our seed starting success this year could have been better.

Transplanted Butternuts

Transplanted Butternuts

While browsing Southern States’ website for fertilizers, I discovered a product called “Azomite” which is an organic trace mineral product.  I went ahead and bought a 10 pound bag because it probably won’t hurt and might help.  10 pounds won’t quite do all of our boxes but it’ll do the vast majority.  Trace minerals are things that regular fertilizer doesn’t include so it may be something others may want to check out for soil improvement purposes.  Azomite has a website – just goggle the term.

 

Spring-planted leeks

Spring-planted leeks

Lettuce Patch

Lettuce Patch

Half-runner beans

Half-runner beans

Broccli head forming

Broccoli head forming

 

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2 Responses to “5 May Weekly Update”

  1. kitsapfg Says:

    Lovely harvest this week. Your garden production is swinging back up again. Sorry about the voles, they can be a real problem. My cat helps me to keep them in check around here.

  2. Norma Chang Says:

    I hear you about the voles, I also have to deal with birds. Lovely harvest.

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