It may be August, but we’re still planting things at Riverglen! The southern section of beds is starting to fill up with crops for the fall. All the different vegetables you enjoy take different amounts of time to grow. So a couple of weeks ago another batch of lettuces, carrots, raddishes, rutabagas and beets were seeded into the garden. Last week more beets, carrots and radishes went into the ground. This week some scallions, celery, cabbages and kale were planted from blocks. There is some chard, collards, scallions, kale and lettuces in soil blocks to be planted soon.
While we are still playing a bit with the spacing between the plants, the general routine is relatively well established. Spade down the weeds, till the beds, rake the beds. Then you either direct seed or plant. David does most of the direct seeding – you load the seeds into the seeder, adjust the seeder to release the right number of seeds, the right distance apart, and then ‘just’ push it down the the bed in a very straight line. Planting involves raking those same very straight lines, placing the soil blocks along them at the right spacing, then going down the row with a planting trowel and popping them all into the ground. The common theme is straight lines, which make the hoeing much easier afterwards. Straight lines are like perfect circles, they never quite exist in reality but rather they are an ideal to strive for.
There’s also a very different kind of planting that takes place. Steve has been out broadcasting buckwheat on all the beds we are finished with for the season. Once a crop has been harvested, the greens get turned into the soil and we plant a cover crop for the rest of
|Spazz and Moe Sharing a Meal|
the season. This helps to keep weeds from establishing and also makes some nutrients more easily available to the v
egetables we will plant next year.
Hurrah for the rain!
What’s in my Box?
- Watermelon: Early watermelons so we can enjoy them while it’s hot outside. They could use a day or two on the counter to ripen.
- Cucumbers: Fresh slicing cucumbers for sandwiches, salads and making interesting shapes on a fancy meal.
- Pickling cucumbers: What’s the difference? These are smaller. Really, that’s it? Yup, that’s it. Make sure you read the bin label and take the appropriate number. Eat them like regular cukes or pickle them. Yum! I’ll post a sour pickle(no vinegar) recipe on the website and if you want to purchase a larger amount, just visit our store or market stand.
Harvesting irrigated cucumbers in a dry garden
- Zucchini: We’re rotating different varieties between pickups, so they may look different this week. Five different varieties of summer squash are growing in the garden. You should be able to taste them all over the next couple of weeks.
- Radish: We’ve been having terrible luck with anything Brassica this year: Radish, turnip, arugula, kale, broccoli… For some reason the Swede Midges and Flea Beatles are on them like a bunch of school kids at a Chinese buffet. We take several precautions to mitigate the damage, but sometimes these dedicated little insects get the upper hand. Obviously, the tops on these radishes have been destroyed to the point of not being edible but the roots can be cooked as usual.
- Carrots: More carrots. This year our orange carrots look (and taste) great!
- Garlic: Just a little taste of garlic as it is fresh from the garden.
- Sweet pepper: Choose one from an assortment of white, green or red sweet peppers. There are lots more on the plants, so you can look forward to more.
- Tomato: Tomatoes are also making their debut this week. These are mostly ‘Stupice’, but some of the others are ripening as well.
- Basil: A fresh summer herb, perfect for seasoning pasta sauce, vegetable sautes, etc.
- Cilantro: A classic herb to go with some warm chili during a cool damp week. Also awesome with eggs!