Harvest Monday, April 5, 2010

This week marked the first of the asparagus harvest. It was only two spears, but we were pretty excited nonetheless. We are always eager for the start of asparagus season, since it is the first of our seasonal fruits and vegetables to appear.

More are popping up already. This is our third year after planting, and the beds should produce more than the 10 pounds we harvested last year. That should make for a lot of eating in the two month harvest window!

We had a nice mix of salad greens this week, with lettuce, mache and arugula making their way into salads. I harvested some of the outer leaves of the Radichetta lettuce, which is an Italian heirloom variety that resembles a crunchy chicory but isn’t at all bitter. The dark red lettuce in the bowl is the aptly-named Merlot variety.

Radichetta lettuce leaf

I’ve grown the Radichetta lettuce for several years now. It is a large growing, slow bolting variety that grows upright and makes good use of space for intensive plantings. The seeds are available at Seeds from Italy.

Radichetta lettuce plants

I also harvested a mix of Asian greens including komatsuna, tatsoi, purple pac choi and mizuna that wound up in a stir fry with shiitake mushrooms.

stir fry

There is no sign of bolting in the spinach yet, and I harvested about 1.5 pounds. I froze some of it for later use and the rest wound up in salads.

So this weeks harvest tally is:

Asian greens(16 oz)

Asparagus(1 oz)

Spinach(25 oz)

Lettuce and salad greens (11 oz)

Total Harvest 3.3 lbs

To see other gardeners’ harvests, or to add your own, visit Harvest Monday at Daphne’s Dandelions.

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16 Responses to Harvest Monday, April 5, 2010

  1. vrtlaricaana says:

    This is a wonderful harvest. I love the Radichetta lettuce, I’m sure I can find these seeds here, just have to look harder.

  2. Cyndy says:

    Congrats on the asparagus! I once toured a garden that used asparagus as an ornamental among the perennials – the foliage is lovely!

    • Villager says:

      The foliage is beautiful and ornamental. Many people are surprised to find out that the ferny-looking plant is really edible asparagus!

  3. Momma_S says:

    Yum! I wish my family was as into asparagus as I am. I’d grow it if I had more space for sure.
    Your lettuces are so pretty! My lettuces are almost gone, everyone else’s is just starting up, and making me long for more.

    • Villager says:

      I never used to like asparagus much, but I really got into it when I started growing it and had lots of it fresh from the garden.

  4. Daphne says:

    That stirfry look delicious, but the asparagus really wins my heart. I’ve loved asparagus ever since I was a child. I’ve never grown it though. I’ve never had the room for it. I know you only got two spears, but that is two very yummy spears.

    • Villager says:

      We found a few more spears this morning, and they all will go on the grill tonight along with some sliced sweet potatoes and a piece of pork tenderloin. Grilling is one of my favorite ways to cook asparagus.

      • Momma_S says:

        I second the grilling of asparagus! My second favorite is coating in olive oil, baking (usually in the toaster oven), then coating with a mix of 2T brown butter, 1T balsamic vinegar, 1tsp soy sauce…

  5. Jane says:

    Your lettuces are beautiful! I really like the merlot – this was the first winter I planted it and it was one of the few red lettuces that actually grew red here. I’ll have to try the radichetta – I’m always looking for lettuces that don’t bolt so easily. What aparagus seeds are you growing? I’m told it will grow in Hawaii and I’ve been thinking about giving it try.

  6. mac says:

    Wow, homegrown asparagus! I wish I have the room for it.
    I’m amazed at the variety of beautiful greens you grow, and the stir fry look so delicious.

  7. Meredith says:

    How exciting! I love fresh asparagus, a once-a-year treat. Enjoy, villager. 🙂

  8. michelle says:

    Asparagus! It’s so good when it’s really fresh. Someday I will have to dig a nice deep bed, line it with hardware cloth, add some good imported soil and plant some asparagus. Someday . . . In the meantime the local stuff is finally coming to market and I’m enjoying that. I served grilled asparagus to some friends this weekend who were amazed that you could cook it that way. It’s the best way to cook it, in my opinion.

    Your greens are pristinely beautiful.

  9. Thomas says:

    Everything looks great! I’m envying your harvest totals at the moment. haha. I’m having the worst luck with lettuce this spring. Everything I’ve started indoor is looking might rotten. I think I need it might be my soil block mix, which isn’t sterilized.

    I’m amazed by the size of your green. I have to make a mental note to start lettuce waaay earlier next year.

  10. Angela says:

    Asparagus, lettuce and stir fry greens! Perfect spring harvest. I would love to have asparagus right now and I do have the space for it. I selfishly hope that you will keep us up to date re: your asparagus bounty so I actually get inspired and plant them in my garden. I seem to be intimidated by the fact that they are a perennial crop…

  11. Oh, yum, asparagus. Wish I had space for it. I can’t believe you’re going to get more than 10 lbs of it this year. What a wonderful crop. And your greens look great too.

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