Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Garden Salads


A few posts back I wrote about planting the salad garden this spring, and anticipating the harvest of a few different kinds of fresh greens.  Well, the effort paid off because now it is time to harvest and enjoy the blessing of God's increase.  We plant seeds, water, and pray, but God makes it grow.  It is tempting to doubt whether those tiny seeds can actually produce anything, especially since we tend to get busy and neglect the garden quite often.  But God is faithful and we are thankful.  I thought I'd share some pictures of the end results of that simple little lettuce patch I planted not long ago.

Fresh romaine lettuce, full leaf lettuce, spinach, shelled peas, baby carrots, juicy raspberries, sprinkled with a bit of cheese, and dressed with Mom's thick and tasty raw whole milk yogurt.  Dad purchased a hoop bender from Johnny's Seeds to allow us to bend metal electrical conduit into hoops for extending the lettuce growing season into the late fall.  We will be setting up a plot for that purpose soon.  The trick to keeping lettuce on the table throughout the growing season is succession planting (i.e. replant every three weeks).

The garlic is also doing quite well.  We were able to cut off the garlic scapes this year, whereas we hadn't in years past.  The scapes are young flower blossoms on the garlic that form a loop on top like a pig's tail.  They can be used for different cooking purposes, but I found them pleasant to nibble on raw.  They are very garlicy and rather woody. 
Yesterday I picked a variety of garden veggies like sugar snap peas, a few different lettuces, and carrots, and then on my way back from the cows I noticed the cherries are turning red and few were close to ripe.  Nearby, the current berries were also almost ripe.  Yesterday morning Dad, Jonathan, Andrew, David, and I picked the raspberry patch and got about a quart and a half of nice berries.  We will need to watch for bird trouble this year since there seems to be a lot of Cedar Waxwings taking bites from the ripest berries.  They were robbing strawberries earlier too.

See those nice carrots?  I am glad they are doing so well.  We are getting better at progressively thinning the carrots.  The goal is 2 to 3 inches between individual carrots so they can enlarge easily without competition for space and moisture.

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