Harvest Monday, June 25, 2012

Chinese (garlic) chives flowers. Both the stems and the flower buds are used in cooking.

Picked snow peas, total weight for the week: 1¾ pounds. Snow peas doing very well this year. Not so with sugar snap, the seeds germinated and then the plants all disappeared, don’t know what happened, ah well, next year.

Harvested garlic (not all are in the photo), forgot to weigh. The above garlic are still immature and not  ready to harvest but I need the space.  The cloves are formed and good size. Nice garlic flavor, a bit milder than fully matured cloves. They are not keepers.

The harvested garlic were along the edge of the bed where I planted my beets (above photo), the beets are getting bigger and need more space so I pulled the ones that are in the way (ready or not) and leave the others to mature.

The garlic scapes I am leaving to form bulbils are starting to straighten out. Will take another photo when it is straight. Photo at right (click on photo to enlarge) is from the June 8, 2012 post (where you can learn about garlic scape).

The above are “cut and come again” cimmaron lettuce. When I harvested the cimmaron lettuce early in the spring I cut the head about 1″ above ground level (instead of pulling up the whole plant) hoping there will be side shoots. The photo above illustrates.

The lettuce were planted early spring in the area where I planned to plant sweet potatoes. When it was time to plant the sweet potatoes I pulled only the lettuce where I want to put a sweet potato slip. Now that the sweet potato vines are growing and need more space I pulled all the lettuce, including the “cut and come” again.  Above photo: Sweet potato vines (the heart shaped leaves) are at the left and right of the cimmaron lettuce (center).

I practice the above planting methods to maximize the real estate in my garden. My garden is really too small for all the variety of plants I want to grow and am growing.

Copyright © by Norma Chang

Visit Daphne’s Dandelions http://daphnesdandelions.blogspot.com/ for more Harvest Mondays

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About Norma Chang

I am the author/publisher of 2 user-friendly Chinese cookbooks: "My Students' Favorite Chinese Recipes (updated edition)" and "Wokking Your Way to Low Fat Cooking" A gardener who enjoys cooking and eating and loves to think outside the box A garden volunteer at Locust Grove Heritage Vegetable Garden Conduct hands-on cooking workshops for teenagers Conduct cultural programs for children and family Conduct healthy cooking classes for adults
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69 Responses to Harvest Monday, June 25, 2012

  1. Your greens are all so healthy and vibrant my friend 😀
    You should be proud!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

  2. Liz says:

    I know the feeling of having a garden too small for all that you want to grow – frustrating isn’t it. I grew garlic chives for the first time this year and really enjoyed them, although sometimes the flower stalks were perfect and other times they were a bit tough why so you think that might be?

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Liz,
      If the weather is hot and dry the flower stalks will be a bit tough, I run my fingers along the flower stalk and bend, the stalk will break at the point where it is tender.

  3. Gardening in a small space is definitely a challenge, but you do remarkably well! I think it’s the shuffling game that drives me crazy…figuring out when to pull something so something else can be put in its place! Ah well…if I had a lots of acreage, I’m sure I’d get frustrated with that, too 😉

    Congrats on your wonderful harvests!

  4. maryhysong says:

    I don’t think we ever have enough room for everything we want, no matter how big our garden is! I did a similar thing this year by planting late lettuce in the corn bed and later putting in some squash plants where lettuce didn’t germinate. The lettuce is about done now and the squash is getting big.

  5. kitsapfg says:

    Those of us gardening in limited real estate area have to be somewhat brutal about pulling things out timely to make room for the next item coming along. You do a good job of maximizing your growing area.

  6. Jenny says:

    Beautiful greens and I actually like immature garlic because it’s not too strong and perfect in cooking for my taste 🙂

  7. Wilderness says:

    Looks like you garden is in full swing. Maybe someday I will have something to show for my efforts but if the weather has anything to say about it, I am not sure.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Wilderness,
      Yes, it is in full swing, but because of the crazy weather pattern, hot when it should be cool and cool when it should be hot, many of plants are confused, all things considered, cannot complain though.

  8. Another lovely harvest Monday!

  9. I’m wondering if you’ll do a post with beets this summer when you harvest that lovely looking crop of beets? (They are one of my favourites….and Charles had a great salad recipe a little while back that looked divine.)

  10. Eva Taylor says:

    Just this morning I was wondering if my lettuce will grow again after I harvest and there is the answer! Thanks Norma, I will leave the roots in and cross my fingers. I just wish they weren’t so ugly looking since they are on my back deck.
    Do you have any luck with Cilantro? I seem to recall that you might not, but I thought I would ask anyway. Mine seems to go to seed so quickly, doesn’t even give me a chance to harvest leaves and keeping up with pinching the flowers is next to impossible.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Eve,
      I neglected to mention in the post that I would also harvest the outer lettuce leaves instead of the whole plant thus extending the harvest.
      From what I read cilantro likes morning sun and fertile soil. Mine are in an east facing bed and gets only morning sun, always did well except for this year and I think it is because of the horrible 90+ temp we had in May.

      • Eva Taylor says:

        Well, I’ll blame the untimely demise of my cilantro on the heat too, Norma. In fact, the parsley is dying too, and now I noticed that the Italian Basil is looking a little ill too. Darn, and we’re away again for a few days, so I won’t be able to baby them. I’ll likely end up having to purchase an new set when we’re back.

      • Norma Chang says:

        Hello Eva,
        The unusual weather pattern is stressing out many plants. Yesterday morning woke up to low 50’s starting tomorrow daytime temp is going to climb to the 90’s. Lost my first set of flat leaves parsley, put in a second set, basil is not looking happy, could be worse, check out the flooding in Florida.

      • Eva Taylor says:

        I’ve lost my Italian basil and parsley too, it’s brutal. So sad.

      • Norma Chang says:

        Hello Eva,
        This heat is just too much and NO rain.

  11. Norma, I am so impressed! Love those snow peas..mine are still no sight of fruit…sighs…

  12. Rick says:

    Great harvest, we are missing our lettuce, all that was left bolted about 2 weeks ago. Our garlic has been funny this year. Last year they were loaded with scapes but this year we haven’t had a single one???

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Rick,
      Are you planting a different variety of garlic this year? May be they are just late. My lettuce came to an end also. Transplanted a few oakleaf seedlings into a shady area of the garden few days ago will see how well they do.

  13. Courtney says:

    I seriously want to have a garden like your when I grow up! 🙂

  14. mac says:

    Nice harvest, I’ve been letting my chive scape go to flower because I still have a big bag of garlic scape to deal with.
    When you plant sweet potato do you “hill up” as in growing potatoes? I have some sweet potato leaves growing wonder I should put some dirt over the vines, actually I’m growing for the leaves, but don’t mind having roots if they bulk up at all.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Mac,
      You ccan freeze the garlic scapes and chive scapes. Not as good as freshly harvested but not too bad especially if used as flavoring for stew etc.
      No I do not “hill up” my sweet potatoes. I started growing sweet potatoes for the leaves, now I grow both for the leaves and tubers especially the purple and white sweet potatoes tubers. I can purchase white sweet potatoes but not the purple ones.

  15. I think you do a great job maximizing your space!

  16. ChgoJohn says:

    Another bountiful Monday, Norma! I’m gardening vicariously through you. 🙂
    As I recall, my Grandpa never pulled out his lettuce until they bolted. Like you, he started at one end of the patch and only cut the lettuce leaves. By the time he reached the end of the patch, the beginning was ready to be harvested again.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello John,
      Thanks. My lettuce came to an end so did my garlic scape. Transplanted a few oak leaf lettuce seedlings, not sure if I will have a harvest. Waiting for my tomatoes to set fruits.

  17. Lou Murray's Green World says:

    You seem to grow a huge variety of vegetables, so your space must not be too limited. Good job.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Lou,
      That’s my problem, I have too many varieties for the fenced in garden space I have. It would be so much easier if I did not have such major deer issues.

  18. Juliana says:

    Norma, it is always so nice to see the pictures of your garden…you sure have so many variety of greens…the garlic scapes are so interesting 🙂
    Hope you have a wonderful week ahead!

  19. Those snap peas look delicious!

  20. Kristy says:

    I wonder how many different recipe combinations you could come up with from your garden alone Norma. Good looking greens!

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Kristy,
      It all depends on if I am in the groove. The max I have come up with was 5 in 1 day (I believe that was the one and only time), some days I am in the garden doing chores and suddenly a recipe pops into my head, sometimes with photos too (that makes me sounds loony, doesn’t it) other days I just look around, enjoy and day dream, no recipe.

  21. Norma, you have such a great green harvest. I would love to have some of those peas, they look lovely. I can only imagine how they smell. Along with garlic… I know how challenging it is to manage a small garden ( have a small plot myself, but want to grow a lot), and you do a great job! 🙂

  22. Barbara Good says:

    Another wonderful harvest Norma, and I know what you mean about having a garden too small for your plans!

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Barbara,
      If I did not have a herd of deer visiting twice daily I could have a huge garden and plant anything I desire without worrying about space. I would have to worry about maintenance though. I discovered it is easy to start a garden but a challenge to maintain.

  23. Daphne says:

    That is a good way to maximize space. I left a few scapes on my garlic too. But just because I missed them. All the other years I would go out and cut them off when i saw the ones I missed, but this year I’m going to let them keep growing. I’ve never seen them straighten out before.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Daphne,
      I am glad you are letting a few garlic scapes to keep growing, we can then compare notes.
      My sweet potatoes are not moving much due to the on and off cool weather (woke up to low 50’s this morning) warming up later in the week, they will be happy. How are your sweet potatoes doing?

  24. leduesorelle says:

    Me neither, I hadn’t realized that the scape straightens out — still so much to learn out in the garden!

  25. Norma, I love seeing gardeners who plan their space usage carefully. It’s true that if we plan really well, we can maximise our small backyards. We don’t do this anymore, as we’re not able to cope with the workload, but when we started our garden, we followed Linda Woodrow’s advice and grew advanced seedlings in cut down 2 litre milk containers. The seedlings grew in those until they were 6″ tall – as the first period of growth took the longest, it meant that they needed much less time in the actual beds, and we were able to plant significantly more in our space. As I said, we don’t do it anymore because of time restraints, but it’s a brilliant idea nonetheless! 🙂

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Celia,
      Work, children, home keeping, cooking, gardening, blogging …… I am amazed at your energy level and time management.
      I have not read Linda Woodrow’s book, next time I am at the library I surely am going to get a copy.
      Today I started some seeds in containers they should be ready to go into the garden when many of the greens and other plants are harvested and space becomes available.

  26. You always have the most gorgeous looking produce, Norma! I just discovered Scapes last week. love love love =D

  27. Sammie says:

    Wow Norma!! I’m happy to be learning so much about greens from you! mmm. I’m going to ask you a silly question but is there a difference between chinese chives and regular chives? 😀

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Sammie,
      Am glad you are learning a bit from me, there is no such thing as a silly question. The blades (leaves) of Chinese chives also know as garlic chives is flat while for regular chivess it is tubular. Chinese chives also have a mild garlic flavor hence the name garlic chives.

  28. Charles says:

    What actually is the difference between snow peas and sugarsnap peas? I’ve always wondered this…

  29. Karen says:

    You are getting such a nice harvest, especially with your snow peas. Everything looks so healthy.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Karen,
      The heatwave is coming so the snow peas may be coming to an end so are the tender greens. But the tomatoes, eggplants and sweet potatoes and other heat loving plants will be happy and hopefully take off.

      • Karen says:

        We are having such yoyo weather. The past six days have been rain with highs in the 60’s and lows in the 40’s and 4 inches of rain. Now the forecast is 90’s by the weekend. I can’t imagine how the tomatoes can possibly deal with the two extremes to produce blossoms that will turn into tomatoes. I will just continue to enjoy your garden.

      • Norma Chang says:

        Hello Karen,
        We are having similar yoyo weather. Many of the plants are so stressed. The cold night sets them back a few days then the heat wave that’s starting tomorrow rushes them on. Not sure how all the heat loving plants are going to do this year.

  30. Sophie says:

    What great & tasty produce, dear Norma! 🙂
    Yummmmm!

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