April 22, 2009: First Harvest!

No matter how small, the first spring harvest is a beautiful sight to behold!


Tonight I'll have a lovely salad of mixed greens; Prizehead, Red Sails and Red Romaine lettuces with baby spinach. There would have been a fourth lettuce, Buttercrunch, but the quail came through this morning and nibbled all the outer leaves. I put some bird netting over the bed today, so maybe next time I'll get some green lettuce to go with the red. I pulled five little radishes and two nice green onions. I've planted so many of both, I'm not shy about pulling some when they are still quite small. It's not a lot, but I got to add four ounces to my produce scale! It would have been more if I hadn't trimmed about 4" of roots off of those onions, just so I could get them in the picture! Roots are really running deep in this good compost rich soil, which bodes well for the carrots and parsnips!

Yesterday it got really warm, 88F, I think. I installed a new garden sprinkler, so now the entire garden should have good coverage. Unfortunately, the new sprinkler will water the leaves of the indeterminate tomatoes when they get planted. I'll be sure to water very early in the mornings, and hope it doesn't cause disease problems.

I set many of the seedlings in the garden to get watered, forgetting the godetia didn't have drainage holes in its container. The soil blocks got completely waterlogged, and the poor plants were drowning, so I plucked them out and planted them in the garden. I also planted the four survivors (of 7) Crackerjack marigolds (4/16). Then I weeded and edged around the patio, where I would like to eventually plant strawberries. I'll be getting runners from the new plants one of these days, and I don't want them to go to waste.

Today I cleaned patio and hosed everything down well. OOPS, knocked down a hornets nest, so I had to evacuate the area until the hornets moved on. When it was safe to go back out, I mowed around edges of back yard and added clippings and leaves to the fenced compost pile. I potted up 12 pepper plants into 16 oz. cups, as the roots were growing out of the bottoms of the soil blocks. I planted another pepper plant in decorative pot for the patio.

I planted three dwarf nasturtiums (seeds), one cabbage (plant) and one basil (plant) in the side garden, where the tomatoes and cucumbers will be in containers. Then I moved all the ramaining seedlings to the corner of the patio, where they will get morning sun rather than having to move them out to the lawn each day, which is getting very tiresome.

The larger of the two AZ planted Tumbling Tom tomatoes grew four inches since I took its picture four days ago. At an inch a day, it will soon take over my house!


Aren't the baby morning glory leaves pretty? They remind me of fairy wings.



One hot day and the green beans go crazy!


27 comments:

  1. Granny - I agree....no matter how large the first harvest of the season is, it's probably the most satisfying. You better watch out for those hornets! They are the worst of the worst..

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  2. I escaped the wrath of the hornets, EG, but later a bee kept chasing me and went right down the back of my shirt! My hands were all muddy, and I had on a white shirt...you can imagine what it looked like after grabbing and pulling and tugging to get a bee out! I can't believe it didn't sting me.

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  3. I would have paid good money to have seen that dance.

    They do! They do look like fairy wings. How cool. Granny, I can see you doing some creative painting with that like incorporating those leaves with a fairy with a flowered hat or something on a large river rock by those flowers!

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  4. "I can see you doing some creative painting with that like incorporating those leaves with a fairy with a flowered hat or something on a large river rock by those flowers!"

    Uh...yeah.

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  5. Look...out in the yard...it's Super Granny...doer of all things garden. Able to construct a birdhouse from a single piece of lumber. Able to build a raised bed and grow veggies in the scorching heat of Arizona. Able to turn bleach bottles into useful garden implements.

    We've got faith in you.

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  6. The salad fixins look super! I love the first greens of the season - it's worth celebrating and savoring.

    Glad you survived the hornet encounter - and thank you for the chuckle reading about the white shirt and the bee pat down episode! Been there - done that - have the stained shirts to show for it!

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  7. Aw, Cheryl (blush)...you're funny!

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  8. Kitsapfg, the dinner salads were delicious. I mixed the fresh greens with a bit of iceberg lettuce, the onions, and some diced celery. Added the radishes and some tomato with ranch dressing on Mr. H's, put dried cranberries and walnuts with balsamic vinaigrette on mine. Looking forward to the next picking!

    Last year I was fretting because there were no bees, so I'll take them any way I can get them...in my shirt, in my bonnet, wherever!

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  9. PS; Cheryl, I have five unfinished birdhouses in the garage. I haven't had time to finish them!

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  10. Yay for the first harvest! Looks delightfully yummy! I also hadn't thought of it but the morning glory do look like fairy wings! Mine are at pretty much the same stage. I may have to dub them fairy flowers from now on. ;^) I'm also very glad to hear that you didn't get stung. Sorry about the white shirt though, at least there's Oxyclean to get the stains out. (Love that stuff). I wish my beans were as far along as yours though - they look great!

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  11. Jenn, two days ago I only had one little bean sprout beginning to emerge. Two days in the 80s really did the job! of course, we're expecting 32F Friday night :-( I hope I can find a tarp large enough to cover them.

    Oxyclean? I'll have to try it. Seems like I'm getting muddier this year than ever before. My daughter has been saying things like "Don't sit on Grandma, she'll get you all dirty".

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  12. Looks like a fine first salad of the season.
    We've had snow here in upper MI the past two days, but I'm trying some greens under cold frames. If it doesn't work, I'm only out about 50 cents in seeds. If it does, HURRAY! Salad a month earlier than usual.
    Love your blog!

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  13. There are worse things than being overtaken by a tomato plant. We are going to get into the 80 this weekend. I'm not sure if I should cheer about that or not. It seems a bit hot for the season. I'm sure it won't last, which the peas and lettuce will be thankful for, but maybe I can get my peppers and tomatoes outside for a bit.

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  14. Ah, the first salad picking! Isn't that just the best salad you've ever put in your mouth?

    You have been so busy and accomplished so much yesterday. I love days when I can get out in the yard and work all day. So much better than cleaning house LOL

    So glad that hornet/wasp didn't get you! Those stings really hurt!

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  15. Everything looks so yummy! I'm getting antsy now....

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  16. Sue; Thank you, I'm glad you enjoy my blog! We're supposed to get to 32F tonight, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. But these bean seeds cost 50-cents at the dollar store, and I have four of each variety of tomato and pepper, so no monetary loss and plenty of backups. But I always hope for the early pickings! At least I don't have snow to worry about.

    Daphne; You are getting the heatwave we got this week, and now our temps are plunging. It would be nice if it would all even out.

    Judy; Yes, the weather has been fantastic. I'm not looking forward to the cool spell we'll be having this next week, but I'm sure my peas and spinach (and my aching body) will enjoy it. One final resting spell before the gardening season resumes.

    Jen; Hey, your spinach isn't too far from eating! But I know what you mean about antsy, I can't hardly keep myself from planting the tomatoes and peppers. Your tomato plants look a lot better than mine, but I think mine will be fine once they find a permanent home in the garden. I've stressed them out so much that they should be able to withstand just about anything by now.

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  17. Everything is looking Grrrrr8, Granny. I want to grow up and be just like you. ;o) I think we will get some hard freezes yet so everything is staying in the GH for now. The hornets like to build there nests in my apple trees and I always have to keep an eye out for them. :o(

    John

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  18. Nice harvest Granny! I will start harvesting soon, forced rhubarb which is ready any time now and lettuce soon after. We have some of that almost 88f weather coming this weekend, can't wait, I will be doing lots of planting.

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  19. John; Isn't that a coincidence...when I get old, I want to be just like you! Weatherman can't make up his mind here, we have forecasts of anywhere from 32 to 38 for tonight, but I think the plants will make a trip into the kitchen for the night, just in case, and hope the green beans can survive.

    Dan; Rhubarb sounds so good. I wanted to start a plant this year, but it didn't get done. It may be too late to buy one now. I've never forced it before, but sure used to have gorgeous stalks when growing it with lots of composted horse manure. That was when I had the big house/garden, not much room where I am now for such a large plant.

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  20. I think us experienced farts have something over the young, I wish I knew what it is, there are a lot of good ideas out there. I tore out several rhubarb plants a couple of years ago and I wish I had kept one. I sure miss that spring tonic, rhubarb sauce on hot buttered toast in the morning, yum,yum.
    John

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  21. John, I used to make a mean rhubarb pie. I also enjoyed strawberry rhubarb sauce and rhubarb upside down cake.

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  22. Hurray for the first harvest! I just got my veggie seeds planted yesterday, I'm so late! But I figure better late than never! Can't wait till my first harvest... EVER! lol

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  23. That's great, Amy! You got those beds built just at the right time. I know you're going to enjoy gardening....I'll give you maybe a month to become addicted :-)

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  24. You can get some nice well behaved rhubarb plants now. I just ordered two 'Valentine' crowns that are supposed to be shipped in May.

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  25. Thanks, Dan. I'll check around. Now, tell me where I will find the room to plant it if I find it!

    ;-)

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  26. Great post, Yay that you got a cool harvest. I still need to do that. Hopefully my family will eat together for a change someday and we can have a salad.

    I planted the kids carrot gardens right next to the wasp nest. I'm shocked that I haven't seen them on these warm days. If I do I'll zap them good. I am afraid to dig up that area. I'd love to plant strawberries there. Though I can just see me with my hand trowel digging into a ground wasp nest or whatever. You, know the one that got my Aunt a dozen times last year. Eek.

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  27. Sinfonian, we get several wasp nests under the eaves of our covered patio each year. I hit them with wasp spray in the evening, then hose them down in the next morning. Unfortunately, I missed one this time! It's funny, but as many nests as we get here, nobody has ever been stung by them.

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