Every year, I plant a few staples and try a few new things. Like every year, I will plant a variety of lettuces to make a mesclun mix: arugula, mizuna, romaine and tatsoi. I also plant sugar snap peas with the idea of getting pea tendrils when the plants are young and tender, and snap peas as the plants mature.
In past years, I’ve planted “braising greens” in late summer for fall harvest. Unfortunately, I have yet to harvest a crop because the first snow always comes before the greens are mature. This year, I will plant in the spring. I know that the summer heat can be the enemy of leafy greens as they get bitter and go to seed. My thought is to plant them in a less sunny area. Hopefully, this will keep the plants cool enough and buy me enough time to finally get a harvest. This same spot that I’m thinking for the greens, I planted zucchini last year. You may recall, I got nothin’ from those plants but a few dozen squash blossoms -- can you feel the disappointment? Too cool for the zucchini, perfect for kale? We’ll see.
Toy Soldier Mick grows beets in his garden... which makes me wonder why I have never grown them.... On this year's list! I’ve never bothered with radishes either, for no particular reason, but this year I think I’ll try. I have some wonderful heirloom seeds from Even Star’ Farm.
A collapsible greenhouse set it up in the backyard allows me a two-week jump start on the season. The greenhouse traps in the warmth of the sunlight, thawing the soil a little earlier. Not only can I get the seeds in the ground sooner, but I also protect the young seedlings from overnight, freezing temperatures.
So to recap…
3. Collards and Kales
4. Brocolli Raab
5. Sugar Snap Peas
I still have another month or so to think about my summer plantings, even if I start some seeds indoors. Stay tuned!