May has been a very busy month in the garden. With a cool start to spring I attempted to get outside every time we had a break from the rain. I was determined to be able to enjoy some cool season crops like lettuce and spinach before the heat of May arrived. This spring was cold so many seeds did not germinate. I declared early on that this would be the year of the seedling. I was right. By starting many of my cool season crops in the greenhouse and transplanting them, I was ahead of the game in the garden.
I have been picking spinach for weeks now. If only the strawberries had been ready at the same time so we could enjoy a tasty spinach and strawberry salad. I had to break down and buy strawberries from the grocery store. Our berry season will be late this year. As you can in the above photo the spinach is now bolting and trying to produce seed. Touching the flowering stalks sends a plume of pollen dust in the air. It’s time to harvest the last of the leaves and compost the rest of the plant. I am already planning some beets for this area.
In the kitchen garden Farmer Jim moved an arbor to the back entrance. He has bolted it down so strong winds won’t knock it over. On either side I have planted up beans to grow up the arbor. Yes, I ran out of space in the ten raised beds. Can you believe it? There I was digging through all my old containers to find something to plant beans in. With a half acre of garden to water I try to limit my container plantings.
In one container I have Japanese pole beans. I received seeds from another seed saver at our Ladner Seedy Saturday event. She said her family had grown these beans for over thirty years. It’s the stories behind the seed that have me eager to try them out.
On the other side of the arbor I am growing Chinese red noodle beans. Now I will admit I haven’t been successful with them yet but I am determined to change that this year. The leaves on this plant have a bluish-green hue to them making them easily recognizable.
Yes, we have peas! They are filling out nicely in the garden and this is where my seedlings have really paid off. I was probably the only one growing peas in March in our gloomy rainy weather. No one was gardening and I couldn’t sell any of the plants.That’s okay as they were all planted in the kitchen garden.
So what do I have growing in the garden? I have two beds of tomatoes, one bed of raspberries, one bed of garlic and onions, one bed of carrots, salad greens and potatoes, one three sisters garden, one more bed of salad greens and peas, one bed of sweet potatoes and basil, one bed of squash and one bed of peppers. Phew, I am glad everything is planted. What are you growing in your vegetable garden this year?