Harvest Monday, May 2, 2016 – Widow Box Harvest + Walking Onion

What a difference a week makes.

The photo of the window box Kookaburra spinach below is the same window box Kookaburra spinach I posted last Monday, 4/26, (click on link and scroll down to view) quite a difference in sizes!

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Harvest just the outer leaves and got ¾ pound of spinach, not bad from 18 plants in a window box..

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Cut spinach into about 1-inch pieces, steamed, cooled and froze for later use.

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Above photo after harvest. Should have another outer leaves harvest soon.

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Lettuce also grew by leaps and bounds in one week.

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Harvest just the outer leaves and got about ½ pound.

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Made a simple dressing with lemon juice, EVOO, salt and pepper to taste. Freshest salad.

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Above photo after harvest. Will be harvesting outer leaves as needed.

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Asian greens did not grow as well, they are more cold sensitive at this stage and the weather has been cool especially at night.

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Got a total of ¾ pounds from the plants in the 3 boxes.

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The harvested leaves were in 3 different piles but then I made a mistake and dumped them all in the sink to wash resulting in a basket of mixed up greens.

Cut leaves and stems into bite sized pieces and sauteed in a bit of ginger infused oil with roasted garlic (from freezer. Click here and scroll down to learn how I peeled, roasted and froze the garlic cloves) and salt & pepper to taste, tender and delicious.

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Above photo after harvesting outer leaves.

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Conclusion from the above window boxes experiment:
§ All the above, spinach, lettuces and Asian greens, were started on 2/23/16.
§ Spinach and lettuce definitely worth starting early. Started in cell packs then transplanted to window boxes (preferred method over direct sow).
§ Asian greens not worth starting that early, requires too much TLC. Needed to be brought into the garage nightly. The young plants are sensitive to cold and may bolt prematurely if exposed to frost or a week of nighttime temperatures below 50 F. Spring planting is doable but fall planting is easier.

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One of my garden friends wanted to grow walking onion so I gave him a clump of “walkers” (plants where the bulbils fell to the ground and grew, variety unkown) and 2 varieties of the bulbils. Click here to learn more about Walking Onion.

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There are more than 10 plants in that clump, which my garden friend will separate before planting (he could use some of the seedlings for cooking if he does want to plant them all), each of the bulbils will produce a plant also. The bulbils at the top will produce curly scapes and bulbils at the bottom will produce straight scapes.

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Got my peas, broccoli, kale, collard, celeriac, radicchio and leeks transplanted into the garden. Direct sowed my parsnips and Chinese long beans. I am too early with the beans but since I have lots of seeds decided to take a chance.

The container fig tree has been moved outdoors for the season and is looking really good happy to get fresh air and see the sky.

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Was at The Phantom Gardener in Rhinebeck, NY last week and saw different kinds of pea seedlings (snow peas, sugar snaps and shelling peas) for sale. First time seeing pea seedlings selling at a garden center. My starting peas indoors is not a unique idea after all.

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The Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County Master Gardener plant sale is May 13 & 14, there will be annuals, perennials and vegetables for sale. Click here to check out their plants lists. Among the vegetables are Ping Tung Eggplant and Purple Sweet Potatoes. Get there early for best choices.

Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County
2714 US Route 44
Millbrook, NY 12545

Plant Sale Dates
Friday, May 13, 2016, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 14, 2016, 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

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Copyright © by Norma Chang. All Rights Reserved. Do not use/repost any photos and/or articles without permission.

Do visit Dave at Our Happy Acres for more Harvest Monday

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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24 Responses to Harvest Monday, May 2, 2016 – Widow Box Harvest + Walking Onion

  1. Lovely greens Norma! I am with you on starting the lettuce and spinach inside and then transplanting outside or into containers. I also have learned to wait on the Asian greens because they are so prone to bolting in spring. I think I got the timing right this year, we will see if they bolt or not!

  2. Angie@Angie's Recipes says:

    What a great harvest!

  3. Phuong says:

    Your window boxes did so well, so impressed with your spinach and lettuces. I’ll have to start doing salad window boxes on the porch. The walking onions sound amazing. Maybe once we have permanent beds in the front yard, I can start doing things like that.

  4. Jennifer says:

    I would love to do something similar with salad greens! Right now, I have them all in my normal garden beds, but I could put them in boxes that could be closer to my kitchen. Your spinach and lettuce look wonderful.

  5. Bill says:

    I’ve decided (tentatively) not to grow Asian greens in the spring any more. They do great here in the fall, but in the spring the flea beetles decimate them.
    On the other hand, our spinach and lettuce is also doing well. It’s definitely a great time of year for fresh salads!

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Bill,
      I will give Asian greens another try next spring but not in February may be late March early April. They do well here in the fall also.

  6. hotlyspiced says:

    So many greens! Truly spring has arrived. I love the look of the spinach and it’s great you can freeze it for later use xx

  7. Eva Taylor says:

    So early and with such uncooperative weather and your harvest is amazing! I’m really impressed.

    I have a question, I have an alum-like plant growing (out of control, I might add) in my side garden. It’s extremely sunny and the plant re-seeds and plants itself as well as sending out shooters underground. When young, the leaves are short and very thin like grass, as it matures and grows the alum-like flowers, the leaves thicken. The bulb is white. Is the bulb edible, how about the leaves? It’s growing like a weed so I’m thinking I may as well make use of it! Thank you in advance.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Eva,
      Wish I could tell you whether your alum-like plant is edible or not. Your best bet is to take a clump of the plant to a nursery for proper identification.
      The weather sure is driving me nuts, one day hot another day cold, our nighttime temp is still in the 40’s, hope the weather stabilizes soon.

  8. Susie says:

    What wonderful success you have with window boxes – I grow a few things in containers (greens) but they don’t look like yours! And thanks for the link on walking onions, sorry I missed it the first time you posted it. I just planted some last year so now I know how to harvest and make the best use of them. Great information, Norma!

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Susie,
      Due to limited nutrients in containers and window boxes to insure plants are getting enough nutrients I do fertilize more frequently but at 1/2 strength.
      Glad you found my Walking Onion post useful.

  9. Judy Killmer says:

    Hi Norma – thank you for the shout out about the Master Gardener Plant Sale. Hope many of you on Norma’s blog can come out to the sale.

  10. Karen says:

    Not bad is right, I can’t believe you got nearly a pound of spinach from your window box. Wishing you a Happy Mother’s Day.

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