Saturday, February 28, 2009

new crop

Today we planted broad bean seeds. We sowed some in the fall, they sprouted, but were killed by the harsh weather. I planted the seeds with the seam side up, hopefully that is where it starts.

On the garlic front, I took the fabric cover away on Feb 14. The picture here is taken today. We decided to grow the garlic in the backyard instead of the front this year. We haven't decided what we're going to grow in the front yet. Our front yard is frequent by people and their pets, so choosing what to grow over there is going to be difficult.

The mache are tiny little greens but they are strong enough
to put up with the tough winter without cover. I harvested some today for our salad.

Today's dinner (all produces are from our backyard):
roasted beets and parsnips
stir-fried carrots and frozen green peas
leek with homemade chicken stock
green salad

Mark is going to have sausage too. Ok, this is not homegrown, but locally made from a Italian grocery store. We also brought Parmigiano-Reggiano from this store and we're going to shave some on the green salad.

Backyard archaeologist

Today we decided to dig out some parsnips for weekday use. I know, it is better to pull them out right before cooking time. However, by the time we get back home during the week, it is already dark and we are tired, and we're not really in the mood to struggle in the backyard pulling out those goodies.

We put down the parsnip seeds around late spring/early summer last year. Yes, they survived the snow storm and new leaves started to come out again. (other veggies weren't that fortunate) When I removed the top soil, the huge crown was revealed, and it is such a beauty! I knew right away that it is going to be a struggle to take it out. In order not to break the root during the process, I carefully loosened and removed the soil bit by bit, twisted the parsnip a little, got rid of a little bit of soil, and repeated the process again and again, very very carefully.

As it turned out, the parsnip is 16" inches long and 4 1/2 in diameter. It is in fantastic shape! We also took out the two that were just adjacent to it. Oh yes, three huge yummy goodies! There are still two in the ground. We've left them in peace for now.

The chili seedlings have been sitting by the kitchen window for about a month now. The growth rate has slowed down dramatically after they sprouted. We have noticed aphids on them. What a drag! Since they are too fragile to be sprayed with stuff (like soapy water), we simply use our fingers to remove them. Of course, they come back; and we keep removing them.

This picture was taken on Feb 14. As of now, they look more or less the same, except that there are these unwelocming inhabitants.