Monday, January 3, 2011

Fall Garden, Growing Season 2011

The fall garden was planted on October 1st and 2nd this year, since most items are repeats from last year, I'll just copy the same blurb as last year. *note* the colors and formatting is all being wonky and I'll just fix it later...famous last words, I know.*

Broccoli: Renee's Garden, All Season Blend; We've mixed equal amounts of seed for these great tasting, high-yielding hybrid varieties with early, mid, and late season maturities for the longest possible harvests. We've chosen cultivars for flavorful, extra-fancy, tightly beaded main heads and abundant side shoots. All three have excellent disease resistance and weather tolerance. Transplant to Harvest: 60.
Notes: I started the seeds in like July or something and transplanted two plants into the garden. They continue to do well. Both planted next to each other in the 'west garden'
Jan 1 update: one of the plants has a tiny itty bitty broccoli head on it so we should be eating broccoli in another month or so.

Chard: Renee's Garden, Italian Silver Rib; A long time favorite of Italian cooks for its flavor and substance, this fine variety has wide, crisp, silvery-white midribs and crinkled, shiny green leaves. The large-framed, handsome plants grow easily and vigorously from spring through late fall. Heirloom Silver Rib produces an abundance of big succulent leaves with sweet crunchy stalks to enjoy as mild, mellow-tasting greens. You'll find it consistently delicious simply steamed with fresh lemon, sautéed with aromatics or added to stir-fries, soups, and casseroles. Days to harvest: 50. Notes: These are the seeds I got for free from the Planning for Spring Gardens Master Gardener seminar.
Notes 2: Planted four in the "east garden"
Jan 1 update: I think 2 maybe came up but were quickly killed off by lack of water/warm weather.

Beets: Renee's Garden, Jewel-Toned Beets (red sangria, golden, and striped chioggia); Our mixture of burgundy, golden, and candy-striped beets yields big harvets with glowing rich colors, succulent texture and sweet earthy flavor. These beets will become an easy to grow, long keeping staple in your garden and kitchen. The smooth roots can be harvested at any size to bake, boil, or steam and enjoy hot and buttered or chilled in an herb vinaigrette. The nutritious young tops are unrivaled as melt-in-your-mouth steamed greens. Days to Harvest: 55.
Notes: I planted six in a specified spot in the 'west garden' and then planted another 6 or so throughout the 'east garden'
Jan 1 Update: same as the chard. I haven't replanted any since Shawn doesn't care for beets.

Carrot: Renee's Garden, Sunshine Mix (Yellowstone and Nantes Forto); Our novelty mix offers gardeners the fun of growing both sunny yellow and bright orange carrots. You'll have eye catching rich harvests of crisp, smooth, evenly cylindrical roots that reach a full 8 inches in length. Both of these premium European varieties taste sweet and crispy with no soapy off-flavors and you can enjoy them over a long harvest period. Whether fresh sliced into carrot sticks, or quickly cooked, their sunshine bright colors are a kitchen gardener's delight! Days to Harvest: 88.
Notes: planted in 2 areas in the 'west garden' but they only appear to be coming up in one area and that area is severely shaded by the lemon balm. I think this may be because I forgot that carrot seedlings need light to germinate. I'll have to replant some more later. Also, I didn't plant any of the Carnival variety yet.
January 1 update: some came up but not very many, I re-planted in late December.

Carrot: Carnival Blend by Botanical Interests Organic; Colored carrots are unique but not new. Grown, and eaten in Asia and Europe 1,000 years ago, they are becoming available once again. Just like the popular orange carrots, red, purple, white and yellow carrots contain plenty of vitamin A and healthy nutrients. Carnival Blend carrots can also be harvested when only 3" to 4" long for gourmet baby carrots. Days to Harvest: 75.
planted in one area in the west garden.
March 19 update: I completely forgot that I did plant some of these carrots until I went and pulled them up to make room for my spring garden plants. The white ones didn't taste like anything, but the purple one was good.

Peas: Ferry Morse Organic, left over from last year
Notes: planted in 2 areas, one in the 'west garden' and one in the 'east garden' They are sprouted and growing.
January 1 update:
Actually the peas did come up, they were just slow. I also planted more in the locations that used to house tomatoes and pepper plants in late December (Sunday before Christmas).

Spinach: Ferry Morse Organic, left over from last year
Notes: I don't think these have come up at all. I will have to replant later.

January 1 update: I replanted the spinach at the end of December (the weekend before Christmas).

Garlic: Already blogged about that here.
Notes: As noted in the link above, so far 2 varieties have not sprouted but the rest are between 1" and 3".
January 1 update: All varieties have sprouted, and I think all of the ones I planted came up. YAY!

Cauliflower: Botanical Interests, Chef's Choice Blend; This colorful mix of three varieties will give you a long harvest period from 75 to 120 days. The white "Snowball", an heirloom variety from 1947, has tight 6½-7½ heads on dwarf plants. "Green Macerataï" is an Italian heirloom with a delicious taste. "Purple of Sicily" is also an Italian heirloom with bright purple heads and mild flavor. Healthy minerals give it the purple color which turns green when cooked. Cauliflower is a cool season crop, and we recommend a late summer planting with fall harvest for best results. It grows best in temperatures around 60 degrees and does not do well in heat. Areas with long cool springs and where summers stay relatively cool will have better success with a spring planting. Late summer planting is recommended in hot summer areas or short spring areas.
Notes: it's impossible to tell what colors are going to be produced by the seeds, so it's just a big ol' guessing game. I ended up with 3 plants.
January 1 update: The plants are still on the small side--to be expected since they're in the east garden which doesn't get as much sun in the fall/winter as the west garden.

Quinoa: Botanical Interests, Brightest Brilliant Rainbow; Annual. Blooms late summer to fall. Full sun. 4'-6' tall. The Incas called quinoa, 'the mother of all grains'. It was planted with a golden tool and offered to the sun in golden vases during solstice. This tall vegetable/ornamental has seed plumes with dazzling colors of hot pink, royal burgundy, red, pumpkin orange, light yellow, creamy white, and lime green. It may initially look a little mundane as plants are growing (it is related to the weed, Lamb's Quarters), but you will be amazed when it produces a rainbow of bright seed plumes filled with edible grains. Use at the back of the flower border for a textural splash of bright colors or grow for the delicious, nutty, high protein grains and nutritious young foliage. Quinoa grains can be cooked like rice, and the tender young leaves can be eaten raw in salads or cooked like spinach. The plumes take around 90-120 days from sowing to appear and will achieve the most intense color when maturing in cool weather.
January 1 update: 4 of the original 6 plants survived and actually started to flower 4" tall instead of the seed packet indicated 4'. I guess that's what the cold weather will do. Unfortunately the seedlings weren't strong enough to hold up their own heads. I guess this is a plant I should re-plant in the spring to see if it does any better.

Onions: Ross once again gave me a handful of onions he had ordered. Experience: The onion were a little harder hit by this year's cold weather - especially the ones in the flower pots. But they appear to be doing fine now (march)

Need to get:

Mustard Greens--specifically the Red Giant or Osaka Purple that Renee Studebaker wrote about earlier this year.
January 1 update: Okay, so I didn't ever make it to anywhere that would have had the greens. gives me something to get next year.

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