Welcome to Harvest Monday, where we celebrate all things harvest related. Our weather still can’t decide if it’s summer or autumn. Last week our temperatures ranged from 24°F for a low to 78°F for a record-setting high. We did finally get some rain though, which I’m sure all the plants appreciated. With more freezing temps predicted for the weekend, I cut most of the mature lettuce in the cold frame beds. While lettuce is pretty hardy, I don’t think freezing and thawing improves it any like it does for kale. I cut all of the Red Sails plants, and we used it for a big lunch salad one day and for wilting a couple of times.
I cut the Jester lettuce in the cold frame beds too. I left a few plants (Tall Oaks) because the refrigerator was getting full of lettuce. They will survive the freeze if it doesn’t get too cold. It got down to 24°F Sunday morning down at the main garden, but I know it wasn’t that cold in the cold frames. I need to put a remote sensor out there and see how cold it really is. I do have another cold frame bed that is full of lettuce seedlings. It remains to be seen if they will size up enough to provide anything edible. But it doesn’t take much effort to set them out, and who knows what the future weather will bring!
UPDATE: It was 19°F in the main garden this morning, and 28°F in the cold frame bed.
I also cut lettuce from the big salad box in the greenhouse. It’s a mix of plants from those I started back in August, and has given us a steady flow of leaves for salads and such. I believe this batch went on some bean tacos, and I see leaves of Jester, Outstanding and Tall Oaks in the mix.
It’s prime season for greens around here, and I harvested some baby Purple Peacock kale. This is actually a broccoli/kale cross, and makes smallish heads if you let it grow, but I think the leaves are the tastiest part of the plant and treat it more like a kale. I lightly cooked these for a side dish. It’s my first time growing this in several years, and it got four thumbs up from me and my wife. I plan on growing it again next year.
Speaking of growing things again, I have gotten back into sprouts production. I have grown sprouts quite often over the years, and they make for a quick and easy indoor crop. Those in the below photo came from a Zesty Dutch sprouting mix I got from Pinetree that includes mung beans, mustard, fenugreek, lentils, and alfalfa. These went in some wraps one day for lunch, and on a salad. I’ve got more growing now, and hope to keep us supplied in sprouts and micro greens throughout the winter.
I also pulled the last of the kohlrabi from the cold frame bed before the last freeze. It’s a mix of Konan and Kolibri, about four pounds total. It’s my wife’s turn to cook this week, so she will get to decide how to use some of it. This planting never really did much, suffering I think from our hotter than usual fall weather. I plant kohlrabi in both spring and fall, and I never know which will make the best crop. I managed to haul in 33 pounds of it this year, so we have been well supplied with it. Kohlrabi keeps well in the frig, so it will likely be around for several weeks or so considering we still have quite a bit of Kossak in there. I turned some into fermented kohlrabi pickles, which is a favorite of both me and my wife. And I think she has plans to grate some of it for use in wraps this week.
I also pulled most of the daikon radishes I had growing. I grew the blocky Alpine and the long slender Miyashige this fall. Alpine is a Korean type, and I have used it for kimchi and in stir fries. The Miyashige will get even longer, and I left a few in the bed to see how they fare. I’ve gotten my first taste of the Kkakdugi radish kimchi, and I like it so much I will be starting a second jar soon. I’m going to break down and buy a bag of gochugaru pepper flakes and see how I like them, which is hard for me to do given how many of my homegrown peppers I have dried and waiting to be used.
I also want to wish an early Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who is celebrating this week!
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!
You still have plenty to report. We haven’t harvested anything this week other than some odds and ends of salads including a few cherry tomatoes from what was left of the plants in the garden greenhouse before we cleared them out. The rain has kept us away from the plot this week but fortunately we had plenty of vegetables either stored or picked the previous week. Our lowest temperature so far in November is 31.6F only just below freezing. I always find it amazing how you can go from what we would call one extreme to the other.
I go back and forth on the Purple Peacock broccoli. It’s so pretty and it is tasty, but it’s not as productive as other sprouting broccolis or kale and in my garden it does tend to get full of aphids. So it’s not a regular but it does get some space every now and then. I keep thinking I should try sprouts. I like them in veggie wraps and I know it would be a lot less expensive to grow my own.
I have mixed emotions about the Purple Peacock too. The plants are highly variable, but I want to try treating it like a baby kale and plant closer together. I still have a few plants in the main garden to see how they taste after a few frosts – which would be right about now!
No post from me today, too busy dealing with our mini snowstorm (well, not sure 6+ inches is “mini”). But I did manage to harvest some arugula from the greenhouse!
A lovely batch of lettuce! Can I what you do with wilted lettuce? I’ve seen it in some Chinese or Vietnamese recipes but never tried it myself.
The wilted lettuce is a salad with a sweet/sour dressing. It’s popular in our area, though I don’t see it much anymore at restaurants:
Thanks for the link, looks delicious!
That is quite some difference between the main garden and cold frame. I have a feeling my tiny lettuce seedlings would have done much better had they been in that environment. As it is I will be harvesting what I can this week and calling it a day as our temps have taken a turn for the worse…much worse (wind chill is 15F right now!).