Monday, February 27, 2012

Harvest Monday for February 27th, 2012.

With the mild winter almost being over, there's still more broccoli for the freezer from this week's harvest!

This week we picked four pounds nine ounces of crisp, fresh organic broccoli! It may be the last harvest for these plants though, given the warm 82 degree weather we had for a day or two.

That warm weather is all the plants needed to start thinking about bolting and going to seed. The weather has cooled back off into the mid-50's, but it may be too late for another picking. Right now, these are the only flowers I see on any of my plants, so the others might still produce. We'll just have to wait and see.

It won't be long and I'll be pulling them anyway in order to plant the spring garden. The broccoli was very good while it lasted as the total harvested was 20.38 pounds!

Be sure to visit DaphnesDandelions for more exciting vegetable gardening experiences in a northern growing zone.

Thanks for stopping by and visiting my blog!

Have a great vegetable gardening day!
Veggie PAK

Monday, February 20, 2012

Harvest Monday for February 20th, 2012.

Last week the weather was pretty cold here so I didn't have a report put together for sharing with you on Monday. The temperatures of the last two nights of the week was 28 degrees and then 26 degrees. Pretty chilly for the plants, but it seems like they were not damaged.

The garden is looking pretty good for February! This is today's view of my east plot.

This is a view of my west plot. As you can see, I didn't do additional work on the giant marconi pepper stalks to prepare them for the winter temperatures. It's been so mild for the vast majority of this winter that I felt it was unnecessary to do anything else for them. Maybe the weeds that grew up alongside will help protect them from the cold. The stalks are very dry so I leave them alone. If they sprout new growth, it would be great. Perhaps new growth may come from the base of the stalks and not the stalks themselves. The stalks may actually be dead, but I'm hoping that the roots are still alive.

I checked the soil temperature to see if it was warming up for seed planting. After four full minutes in the ground, the probe thermometer only rose to 48 degrees. The cooperative extension publications basically say that anything planted before the ground reaches and maintains a steady 60 degrees is just wasting seed because it will rot. At least for the non-cool-weather crops anyway. Using that line of thinking worked well for me last year, so I'm sticking with it for this year too. The air temp today was only 42 degrees, so that could be a contributing factor to the low soil temperature. Daytime temps this week are supposed to be in the mid-50's all week. I hope so.

I picked 15 ounces of rainbow Swiss chard this week. It's really starting to sprout!

I harvested three pounds of broccoli this week! After fertilizing the garden and watering it in, then we had rain.  Now there are several dozen dime-sized florets throughout the garden. Hopefully I'll be picking them for the next Harvest Monday!

During the last two weeks I picked two pounds of buttercrunch lettuce for salads and sandwiches. This picture is of the full pound that was picked just this week.

Be sure to visit DaphnesDandelions for more exciting vegetable gardening experiences in a northern growing zone.

That concludes another Harvest Monday report from our garden. I hope no one is having too much trouble in their gardens with cold temperatures. Spring is right around the corner!

Have a great vegetable gardening day, and thanks for visiting!
Veggie PAK

Monday, February 6, 2012

Harvest Monday for February 6th, 2012.

This week's harvest brings only one veggie to the table, but it's a favorite!  Fresh, crisp broccoli!

I harvested three and one-quarter pounds of broccoli from our back yard organic garden this week.

Tomorrow I'll be fertilizing all the growing vegetables using organic dried blood with a makeup of 12-0-0 at almost twice the rates prescribed by the cooperative extension recommendations for when using fast release chemicals rated as 33-0-0. Since the dried blood is slow release, there should be no problems.

I have been unable to reply to last week's comments thus far due to blogger problems. I'll reply as soon as it doesn't delete what I have written when I click on Publish.

That's all for this week's harvest report.

Have a great vegetable gardening day!
Veggie PAK

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My Garden Status as of February 1st, 2012.

I thought I'd share a few pics of my garden with you since we've been blessed so far with a mild winter. Please excuse the dots on the first picture. I don't know what they are, especially since I didn't clean the lense and they're not in the other pictures.

This is a shot of my entire east plot a day after using the Mantis tiller on it. It looks pretty good, especially after the night of gentle rain we had. I figure that if I nicked any of the plant roots when I was tilling, the moist soil would certainly help them recover quickly.

These are five of my total of eight rows of broccoli. They are doing very well in my opinion. I'm going to apply organic fertilizer this weekend in anticipation of two days of rain forecasted for next week. That will be perfect for watering it in. You can see the weeds around the base of the plants. I don't believe in going 100% weed free due to the level of work involved and also the possible damage to the plants I want to grow. When the weeds are large enough for me to grab without kneeling, I do so and remove them as is convenient for me, since my knees give me a fit sometimes.

You may have noticed the lush green annual rye that shows in some of the pictures. That's what I sowed in order to have it grow through the winter so I will have the mowed clippings for nitrogen for my compost pile. It works great!

These are my youngest collard plants. In the spring, they will grow like the wind! It has been my experience that when I let the plants winter over and then the weather begins to stay warm, they really produce a great deal because the roots have really become established. That's why I do it this way. I'm really looking forward to the spring harvest!

Here is a shot of my one row of Swiss chard and two rows of buttercrunch lettuce. The Swiss chard is like the collards. When the soil warms in spring, look out! It's collard and Swiss chard harvesting time! Just a few more weeks...

Here is the garlic that my two year old and four year old grandaughters planted. I'm so happy that it's popping right up! Now they can see what their little hands planted. Rest assured, they will also do the harvesting when the time is right. Then they'll always remember Poppa's garden. Hopefully, that will serve as an inspiration for them to have their own vegetable gardens one day.

Well, that's it for now. I hope you enjoyed seeing my garden as much as I enjoyed sharing it with you for your enjoyment and interest. I'm really thankful for the garden as I know it's really not me that's making it happen. I'm just prodding it along.

I hope everyone has a wonderful week and we'll see you on the next Harvest Monday!

Be sure to visit DaphnesDandelions for more exciting vegetable gardening experiences in a northern growing zone.

Have a great vegetable gardening day!
Veggie PAK