Thursday, May 14, 2009

Notes From the Garden

Yesterday was cold, and very windy, and I had a lot to do in town, so nothing was done in the garden. We had a good rain during the night, slow and steady. By 9:00 am this morning the sun was up and hopes ran high for a warmer, less windy day. I had an appt in town at 10:00 this morning and afterwards somehow (???) found myself at the local hardware/little bit of everything store, which has a large rack of plants displayed outside.

You may remember than I did a good bit of moaning about the failure of the yellow pear tomatoes and green peppers I planted. They came up but never put on a secondary leaf. But happy day! the store had not only yellow pear tomatoes but lemon boy, and some perfectly lovely green pepper plants. I bought two yellow pear, a lemon boy and four green pepper plants. Also a honking big bag of planting mix and some coconut fibre soil amendment.

Once home I set to work and transplanted the tomatoes and peppers, plus several of my own tomato plants, starfires and a row of "mystery 'maters". The reason they are a mystery is that the plant markers faded in the sun and I can't read them. They may be sweet million, tumbler, patio, or a mix of two or three. I guess time will tell.

In all I have now planted 15 tomato plants; two brandywines, three purple prince, two starfire, two yellow pear, a lemon boy, and five mysteries. I should be able to set up a tomato stand and sell tomatoes by the basketful to campers! I have several large plants left, two are spoken for by neighbours who are away on holiday but will soon return. I am trying to give the other 15 away to neighbours. Any which don't go to neighbours in the next few days will go on Freecycle.

The perpetual spinach and Chinese kale are sulking. Neither has grown much since being transplanted and I am going to pull them out and put something else in their place. However, the Brussels sprouts, broccoli raab and bok choi are leaping upward and look absolutely spectacular!

The raab are actually beginning to put on teeny bundles of buds, which when fully developed will signal "ready to eat"! Raab is one of those vegetables few people seem to have eaten, though it is a favorite in Chinese and Italian cooking. In Italy it is called "rapini" (ruh-pee'-nee). I was first introduced to it when we lived in Rupert. By the time vegetables reached us via the slow freight, they were almost inedible. One day at the grocers there were a group of women grabbing bunches of something so fresh and green it was irresistible. As I grabbed a bunch I asked the woman next to me what it was and what you did with it. She didn't know, but an older Italian lady spoke up and told us to steam it and serve it with lemon and olive oil. Oh, it was heavenly and I was hooked! I've never grown it before though.

I cannot finish without showing a picture of the ramp Zak built for Salvador. Sal is so big that he hurts his "wrists" when he leaps off countertops. So Zak built a ramp for the pampered puss-cat. And he uses it too. He still jumps up, but he comes down the ramp. Wasn't that a kind and loving gesture on Zak's part? He even put non-skid material on it, because Sal was frightened by sliding on the wood.

That's the garden roundup for the moment. There will be more once I start getting seeds in the ground.

1 comment:

newwaytowrite said...

Don't tell my cats that staff can build things for them. Sweetie would never get out of the wood shop.