Friday, May 16, 2014

Garden updates

I love the rain in the spring. It will bring the wonderful crop for the summer. Today, I was thinking of working some more in the garden, but we may be getting some flood. Last night, we had strong wind and all of the seeds from the neighbor’s tree were pounding on our window pane. It was scary. This morning, it rain hard. Some roads are closing due to flood. 
I have been working in the vegetable garden for a month now. I have started the work by levelling the soil in sections. And I’ve put up the fences for the sugar snap peas. This year, I decided to just sowed the pea seeds directly into the soil without soaking. Last year, I’ve tried the overnight soaking and it doesn’t make any difference to the yields. The peas are sprouting now and they are about 2 to 3 inches tall. The rains we’ve been getting help to make the peas growing more. Peas love colder weather and lots of water in the beginning. By summer, I always pick peas after a week of hot weather. Their sugar gets intense by that time.
I have also sown radishes straight into the garden. The bulb is edible as well as the seed pods of the radishes. Radishes are slightly spicy but very crunchy. My favorite is the French Breakfast type. They are faster to grow and taste very sweet. After the radishes bolt and send out flowers, I will harvest the seed pod. The young and tender radishes seed pods are delicious in a salad.
I have also planted onions, carrots, beet roots, turnips and kohlrabi. Oh My! The rain will help the kohlrabi to grow. I have sown the purple and the green kohlrabi. I love the bulb and could eat it fresh.
In the house, I have started the tomato and hot pepper plant from the seed. They are growing nicely. I have transplanted the tomato plants as my kitchen is getting crowded with the young plants. Since the temperature is still low, I cover the tomato young plant with the empty bottle. So far they are all doing fine.
This season, I am designing the garden in four sections. Each section will have couple of hills. I find that the plant grow better when they are higher up. The trench will hold the rain water and send it directly to the roots. I can also use the trench to bury my kitchen scrap for composting.
Despite the rain, I did stop for a while at my lot. I was able to sow more peas, parsley and coriander seeds. All I did was creating a small area for the square bed. Then I created about 4 rows with 6 inches apart. I sprinkled the seeds and lightly cover them with some soil. I do not need to water them because the soil is very wet today. But if the soil is dry, I will definitely have to water the seeds to get it germinated. Another method that I was going to use is to sow the seeds indoor in a small tray with compost. Once germinated, I will then transplant them in their single pot.
Some vegetable seed I would rather sow directly in the garden.  Like my yellow wax beans, purple beans or regular green beans. They grow nicely in the garden when the temperature rises higher than 70% each day. I also grow edamame or also known as Soy beans. They are easy to grow and produce lots of bean pods.
There are also some plants that offer themselves in the garden in spring. Like my mint plants. I have spearmint, regulat mint and chocolate mint came back alive from last year. They are everywhere in my garden. I did it on purpose. I just love the smell of the mint all around my garden. I learned to use the mint with my boiled potato. They are so good.
I also have the Jerusalem arthicoke/sunchokes came back alive from last year. Their tubers are so delicious. I can eat it raw. They are crunchy that way or cook them how I did for the potato. Super duper delicious tuber. Jerusalem arthichoke is from the sun flowers family. But the flower is smaller than the sun flower. It is grown for the tuber that has irregular shape. The white flesh inside the tuber is crunchy like waterchestnut. This is a free food that never leaves the garden once planted.

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