Wednesday, March 9, 2011


3-9-11 Spinach
     Today is cold and gray, but spring is soon around the corner.  Though a cold winter, there were survivors that braved the elements, even without protection.  A walk around the park this morning revealed many such hardy veggies, well at least a few.  Spinach that has over wintered gets a very fast start in the spring.  But then it needs to as it also bolts quickly.

3-9-11 Turnips and spinach
3-9-11 Brussel sprouts

     These brussel sprouts look ready for picking.  I don't know how the stink bugs missed out on this treat last year.  My one surviving sprout plant looks pitiful, but I am waiting to see if it will put out new edible growth.

Collard greens seem to be one of the more cold hardy plants.  They look a little ratty now, but will put out some edible new growth in just a short while.  I feel most people are far too impatient in ripping out survivors when they will still produce some very early greens.

3-9-11 Arugula
3-9-11 Arugula

     Ah, arugula.  Gift of the gods.  Discovered by me only two years ago.  Where had you been all of my life?  Why wait this long to appear on the scene?  But now a new gift, as arugula can obviously survive without winter cover.  And apparently the deer avoid it.  Now to remember to seed a couple of beds of it in the fall.  Even a minimal tunnel should result in loads of arugula next winter.  But first I will enjoy my spring crop.

3-9-11 Turnips

    As far as I could see, the turnips looked edible.  Would have thought they would have frozen over the winter.  In any event, they should put up nice succulent tops as they resume spring growth.  What do you bet that they get pulled and discarded  as mere refuse.                                                          

3-9-11 Kale


     Kale is another one of the hardy cole crops.  Is that a surprise with names like Siberian Kale and Red Russsian Kale?  In a week or so, this row will be putting out lots of new succulent early greens.

3-9-11 Onions, my garden


     And back to my garden is this bed of onions that have over wintered nicely.  These were onions that did not attain good size last year, so rather that toss them, back in the garden they went in the fall.  They are just about ready to start harvesting as scallions.  Yes, maybe a day or two.              

3-9-11 Cabbage

     And lastly, cabbage survived the winter in some gardens.  A couple of these heads look edible.  If you cut the head off right at the base, four or five smaller cabbage should sprout right up.  The root structure is already in place to support new growth.
     Now if only all of these survivors were crammed into my own garden.  Such would be a fast start to eating green veggies without the wait of a month or two.
      Garden hardy,  George


  1. George, your garden looks very exposed. What do you do to minimise wind damage?

  2. Mark, it is very exposed. The wind whips over that exposed piece of land and can chill your bones. The only protected spots are within the cold frames, and the value of the protection is abundantly evident. My cold frames are an oasis of green in a sea of brown. Amazing at what just a small amount of protection can accomplish. George

  3. What an amazing job those coldframes do! Although I'm impressed that you had anything survive outside of them given the winter we've had... and in such an exposed area. I saw you had some structure to propagate on your porch, how is that set up? (I'm always looking for tips!) I look forward to reading your posts!

  4. Hi Lisa, The cold frames amaze and amuse me each time I see them. Often times I will go to the park just to gaze at them. Ah, to be a gardener. The propagating structure on the porch is just a Loew's $69 standard metal shelf. Saw the same shelf on our Panama trip serving as the bar supply shelf. Check out Eco Venao, you and your husband would love it: Thanks for signing on to my blog. George