Harvest Monday March 28, 2016

Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related.  Homegrown asparagus has been on the menu a couple of times this past week. The harvests are still small and somewhat sporadic, though we have already gotten over a pound of it. The warm weather makes it pop up out of the ground, and our biggest harvest so far came on Thursday when my wife cut right at 7 ounces of it.

asparagus harvest

asparagus harvest

I grilled it for lunch the next day, and it made a nice side dish paired with some meatless Reuben sandwiches. I can see some Asparagus Mimosa in my future too.

grilled asparagus

grilled asparagus

I’m still cutting lettuce from the greenhouse beds. This time it was Simpson Elite, and wound up in a wilted lettuce salad. Some of the edges are a little brown, but we eat our wonky veggies here at Happy Acres! I cut more kale from the greenhouse too, for a main dish meal with cannellini beans.

Simpson Elite lettuce

Simpson Elite lettuce

This is actually a 2014 harvest of dried Rattlesnake beans in the below photo. I found them hiding in the cool basement pantry. They look a lot like pinto beans before cooking, though smaller. I didn’t grow them last year, but I missed them and they are back in the plans for the 2016 garden. They are a dual-purpose bean that is good as a snap bean as well as a shell bean. I did a variety spotlight on them back in 2013 if you want to know a bit more about them.

dried Rattlesnake beans

dried Rattlesnake beans

They lose much of their color after cooking, though you can still see some of the markings in the below photo. They hold together well, and I cooked these in the pressure cooker to save some time. I used some for bean tacos, and I froze the rest for later use. I try and keep an assortment of cooked beans in the freezer, where we can pop them out for a quick meal.

cooked Rattlesnake beans

cooked Rattlesnake beans

It’s not a harvest, but it’s news worth sharing, and exciting for me. There’s been a pair of bluebirds eating at the suet feeders for over a month now. Friday I saw them checking out one of the PVC nest boxes. In the below photo, the female has just gone inside and the male is perched on the top trying to look inside too. The pic is a little grainy looking because I was in a hurry to catch the action while I could and used the electronic zoom of my Canon G16.

bluebirds checking out nest box

bluebirds checking out nest box

Harvest Monday is a day to show off your harvests, how you are saving your harvest, or how you are using your harvest. If you have a harvest you want to share, add your name and blog link to Mr Linky below. And be sure and check out what everyone is harvesting!

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18 Responses to Harvest Monday March 28, 2016

  1. The rattlesnake beans are lovely and cooked up nicely. And please include bluebird pictures anytime!

  2. Norma Chang says:

    We are finally getting some rain, it has been so dry I am hoping it rains the whole day and hopefully I will see some sprouts in my asparagus bed.

  3. Susie says:

    Nice to find a cache of beans unexpectedly! That lettuce looks so fresh, looking forward to some of my own in a couple of weeks.

  4. Erin says:

    The asparagus! It looks amazing, I might have to see if there’s any at the markets this weekend so I can have some – maybe in a quiche

  5. Mark Willis says:

    No Asparagus for me this year! 🙁 I dug all mine up a couple of months ago, in order to re-construct the raised bed in which it was growing. I transplanted 4 crowns to a big plastic container, and I was not sure they would survive. Happily, at least one has survived, because I can see a few little spears coming up. I won’t pick any this year, in the hope that the plant will establish itself well enough for me to take a harvest next year.
    That Bluebird is a pretty bird (and aptly named too!). I hope the pair moves into that house you have provided.

  6. Michelle says:

    We eat the wonky veggies too, otherwise we would be tossing a lot. Growing my own veggies makes me realize how unreal all those perfect fruits and veggies at the market really are. I “discovered” Rattlesnake beans last year and they will definitely be back this year. I hope the Bluebirds are successful, it sure would be fun to see pics of babies!

    • Dave says:

      If we have bluebird babies you can bet I will be there with my camera! The parents generally tolerate nest inspections, though I have gotten dive-bombed a few times.

  7. Margaret says:

    That asparagus looks so incredibly good! No sign of ours just yet, although it still has been generally cool here with only a few sporadic warm days. At what point should I expect to see it emerging from the ground (i.e. what would you say the average outdoor temperatures would be?) And how exciting about the bluebirds!! Getting some nesting boxes up for a variety of birds is one of our long term projects.

    • Dave says:

      I don’t have any hard and fast idea when to expect our asparagus. I am thinking it is some combination of soil temps plus air temps. I guess I should note the soil temp when we first see asparagus, but I haven’t done that in years past.

  8. Lovely asparagus and lettuce. It’s great you found some more beans too….I’ve had a few unexpected bonuses this week too.

    Yes…more birdy pics please! We’ve been pleased to have a pair of greenfinches feeding in our garden this week, a first for us.

  9. Mike R says:

    Nice asparagus. I’m still waiting for the spears to poke up. This will be the second full year for these plants. Any day now.

  10. Merouda says:

    I am still waiting with baited breath for my asparagus. Yours looks so lovely!

  11. We just planted asparagus crowns about ten days ago… about how long should it take before we see something?

    Also, I didn’t spread the roots out well, though I did try to get the crowns pointing upward. How critical is spreading the roots out?

    • Dave says:

      I don’t think you have to be all that careful about spreading the roots out, at least not in my experience. It’s hard to say how long it will take to come up, but it won’t look like much when it does. The first shoots are usually smaller around than a pencil, but they will get bigger as time goes on.

  12. Melissa says:

    Oh how wonderful to have fresh asparagus!

    Congrats on your Bluebirds! News worth sharing, indeed!

  13. Wow that asparagus!!

    And the bluebird is so beautiful! 🙂

  14. Rebecca says:

    I found your site searching for radichetta, which I planted yesterday and to be honest was not sure what I was planting. Anyway had to sign up for your musings as anyone who is reading Nancy Bubel’s book ( who was a dear friend) has my attention.

    • Dave says:

      Hi Rebecca, thanks for signing up! Radichetta is one of my favorite lettuce varieties, and I hope it does well for you.

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