Not much harvest this past week and not much garden chores got done as I had company and was out-of-town for a few days.
My daughter and son-in-law came for a short but very fun visit. Among the things we did were to check out the cats at Cat’n Around Catskill 2014 in the Village of Catskill, NY, and the Snoopy & Belle In Fashion at the New Museum, NYC. Will post about them at a later date.
Did harvest some leeks, orange & purple carrots and my first smooth skin luffa.
Leeks, Orange Carrots, Purple Carrots & Smooth-skin Luffa
Gave the leeks and carrots to my daughter and son-in-law to take home with them.
The smooth-skin luffa is the first for the season and may be the last as it appears the cold weather has arrived and I doubt the baby luffas are going to grow much, I may remove the plant this week.
Smooth-skin Luffa Cross Section
Should have harvested the luffa a few days earlier. See the space between the skin and flesh, this indicates the luffa has past its prime, still edible. Made a soup but was very disappointed. The luffa was bitter. Did not enjoy so tossed it out. Not sure why it was bitter.
For culinary purposes, immature smooth-skin luffa and angled luffa are interchangeable. I do prefer the angled luffa over the smooth-skin luffa but my angled luffa seeds failed to germinate so did not grow any this year. To learn about angled luffa and recipes click here.
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Went to gather some sweet potato vines/leaves for dinner Thursday afternoon and noticed something poking out of the ground, upon close inspection realized it was a purple sweet potato. I was so excited, my first purple sweet potato! Did not have my trowel so rocked and tugged and got it out of the ground, saw another one, pulled that one also. Rushed back to the kitchen to weigh and take photos of my first purple sweet potatoes. Hope there are many more underground.
Oops, I forgot to gather the vines/leaves, did not feel like going out to the garden again so no sweet potato leaves for dinner that night.
Purple Sweet Potato
The larger one weighed in at about ¾ pounds the smaller one about 6 ounces
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Early July I received a gift of 2 rooting Okinawan sweet potato slips from Angie of The Novice Gardener. Do check out Angie’s blog. You will enjoy perusing her posts and her story telling style. She is a blogger of many talents: fantastic photographer who creates mouth watering dishes that are like pieces of art. Many of the dishes are created using produce she grows.
Knowing I will not have sufficient growing days for tubers to form (Okinawan sweet potatoes need 130-140 days to form edible tubers) decided to grow them in 2 foam ice chests, when the night time temperature drops too low I will bring the ice chests into the garage and take them out during the days, hoping by doing so I will get some tubers.
Okinawan Sweet Potato slips after 30 days
Okinawan Sweet Potato slips after 80 days
It is mid-September, if we remain frost free until the end of October and the weather stays warm there is a good chance I will get tubers, fingers crossed.
Okinawan Sweet Potato Flower
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Swiss chards in both the garden and window box are doing surprisingly well this year so decided to pull up the ones I planted on April 14 in the window box and transplanted some bok choy into the same box (after enriching the potting mix).
There are definitely too many bok choy seedlings in the window box. I will be harvesting every other plant as they reach usable stage or as soon as there are signs of overcrowding giving the remaining plants room to grow and mature.
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