Harvest Monday, March 31, 2014

I haven’t managed to make very many Harvest Monday blog posts this year. Not that I haven’t had harvests. I just seem to have too many others things going on with gardening and photography and other things. I find that I am reasonably good about weighing and logging my harvests, but terrible about photographing them and putting the harvest weights into an Excel spreadsheet. I would rather take pictures of things growing in the garden, or dishes I made with the harvests, than photograph harvested things that I have put onto the kitchen counter.

Komatsuna (foreground) and Swiss chard

Komatsuna (foreground) and Swiss chard

That being said, this week’s harvest included artichokes, chard, Komatsuna (Asian mustard greens that are delicious in soup and stir-fry), and snow peas.

This may be the last of this early planting of snow peas. More are growing, and I may be able to get in one more planting before hot weather sets in.

This may be the last of this early planting of snow peas. More are growing, and I may be able to get in one more planting before hot weather sets in.

Here is an artichoke that we haven't eaten yet. It is still growing.

Here is an artichoke that we haven’t eaten yet. It is still growing.

DSCN2812

So what do you do with Komasuna and snow peas? You make soup with frozen Asian dumplings (gyoza), using a chicken stock base. I added the snow peas a couple of minutes before serving the soup. Then it was eat it NOW, no time for photographs. Same thing happened with the artichokes: cook them, eat them, oops no photo.

So what else is growing in my coastal Southern California garden at the end of March?

Red Onions

Red Onions

Kale. This is dwarf Scotch blue curled. I'm also growing Lacinato (aka Tuscan kale, aka dinosaur kale)

Kale. This is dwarf Scotch blue curled. I’m also growing Lacinato (aka Tuscan kale, aka dinosaur kale)

Chard, aka Swiss Chard, aka Silverbeet

Chard, aka Swiss Chard, aka Silverbeet, ready to harvest

Freckles lettuce ready to harvest

Freckles Lettuce ready to harvest

Collard Greens ready to harvest

Collard Greens ready to harvest

My FloridaPrince peach tree is loaded with peaches. It will be a few more weeks before they are ripe.

My FloridaPrince peach tree is loaded with peaches. It will be a few more weeks before they are ripe.

I have a mere four peaches on the my little August Pride peach tree. The Babcock Improved peach hasn’t really bloomed yet. Well, one branch bloomed. My fruit trees seem to stagger their blooms on the same tree these days. I attribute it to Global Weirding, the crazy temperature fluctuations and unseasonable heat waves that have become the new normal.

The Panamint Nectarine tree has nearly finished blooming. I pruned it last fall, so there aren't as many blossoms on it as usual. The Snow Queen Nectarine hasn't bloomed yet.

The Panamint Nectarine tree has nearly finished blooming. I pruned it last fall, so there aren’t as many blossoms on it as usual. The Snow Queen Nectarine hasn’t bloomed yet.

I have four Asian pears set on my newest grafted Asian Pear tree, but only on the 20th Century Pear branch. Another Asian Pear tree has just started to bloom. It is also a 20th Century Asian Pear. The third Asian Pear tree is still dormant. It requires too much chilling to set fruit now that our winters on the coast have become so warm. Global Weirding at work again.

My four apple trees are still dormant.  It was so warm this winter, with record-breaking heat waves in January, that they didn’t even lose their leaves this year. Global Weirding.

We still have a few oranges left on the trees, and a nice crop of Meyer lemons that I am going to need to do something with soon. I plan to make some Meyer Lemon and Orange Marmalade with Ginger. As soon as I get a Round Tuit. 🙂

Keep in mind that we live on a tiny lot, about 45 ft x 100 ft, making it one tenth of an acre. The 1700 sq ft house, 3-car garage, deck, patio, driveway, and sidewalks occupy most of that space. And yet we harvest something all year long.

Harvests for the week ending March 31, 2014

VEGETABLES

1 lb 6 oz Artichokes (2 of them)

5 oz Chard

14 oz Komatsuna

7 oz Snow Peas

TOTAL 38 oz = 2 lbs 6 Ounces Produce plus 15 Eggs

 

You can visit Daphne’s Dandelions to see what others harvested this week. Check the sidebar for the link.

Arg, I STILL haven’t added up my produce for the year-to-date to put into the sidebar. And if you notice, I didn’t finish totaling up 2013 or 2012 either. Hey, I can’t do everything. But little bit by little bit, the most important things get done. The chickens are fed and the garden is watered. Time to open a bottle of wine. I have my priorities straight!

About Lou Murray, Ph.D.

I'm a professional writer/photographer, avid gardener, and active environmentalist living in southern California. I am retired from writing a weekly newspaper column on environmental topics in the Huntington Beach Independent, but I am still teaching at the Orange County Conservation Corps. This blog chronicles my efforts to live a green life growing as much food as possible for my husband and myself on a 4,500 sq ft yard that is covered mainly by house, garage, driveway, and sidewalks.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Harvest Monday, March 31, 2014

  1. daphnegould says:

    Lovely harvests. And your kale looks so healthy. Mine are struggling and barely survived the winter. I’m just hoping they don’t die as the soil unfreezes.

  2. Stoney Acres says:

    Your garden is looking great! I’d love to have your warmer weather! We had snow again day before yesterday!! 🙂

    • Thanks Rick, Daphne, Mark, and Leduesorelle. The weather today is gorgeous! Rick, sorry about your snow. Daphne, I can’t believe you have anything left alive after this winter.

  3. Even more lovely than the delicious looking garden fare is that early spring light!

  4. Norma Chang says:

    What a beautiful artichoke, I tried growing artichoke last year but was unsuccessful, decide to give up trying.

  5. shaheen says:

    Very impressive harvest haul. I’ve never grown snow peas or mangetout as we call them in the u.K, this year will be my first.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s