It’s time for Harvest Monday, where gardeners from all over celebrate all things harvest related. Once again I’ve decided it makes sense for me to take a break from the Harvest Monday posts for the winter months, until next February. Harvests are few and far between for many – including me, and I always enjoy taking a bit of downtime from gardening this time of year as do many other gardeners. I’ll be back with Harvest Monday on February 6th. Until then, I will post here about other garden news as it happens, and you can always follow my Facebook page and Instagram feed for harvests and other garden news. Thanks to all for reading and participating in this celebration of the harvest that has been going since 2009. Now, on to the harvests!
Our fall planted collard greens have sized up nicely, and I am cutting them on an as-needed basis. This year I’m growing one from the Heirloom Collard Project called Big Daddy Greasy Green, and my two plants look wildly different. One plant has typical smooth, dark green leaves, while the other one has frilly leaves. The frilly leaves looked familiar, and finally I realized they look a lot like the Portuguese Kale I have grown in the past. Regardless of the looks, both types had a good flavor, though not necessarily any better than others I’m growing. The project describes them as a “Tough variety that has some slight sweetness to it”, which is not exactly what I would call glowing praise!
I cut another batch of turnip greens last week, and these were tender and mild-flavored. Topper is a hybrid that makes mostly leaves, though it will eventually make roots. I grow it for the leaves though, and it is prolific and dependable for me here. I sowed these back in August, making a slit in the woven row cover fabric. The fabric no doubt helped conserve soil moisture during our dry weather conditions, and weeds have not been an issue either.
I pulled the last of the sweet peppers, and though the frosty weather had killed many of the plants it hadn’t seem to hurt these peppers at all. We still have a glut of them, and I am freezing many for later use. I am also thinking a roasted pepper soup might be on the menu soon.
As for hot peppers, I dried some of the Aji Colorado peppers and ground them up into chile powder. The listing at Adaptive Seeds (where I got my seeds) describes it as a “Thin-walled hot pepper great for drying and grinding into powder, and also good eaten fresh or made into hot sauce.” I was a bit hot for my tastes for fresh eating, but the heat seems to have mellowed a bit during drying and it made a tasty chile powder.
I saved the most exciting harvest for last. I planted a persimmon tree here in 2016, and we are finally getting our first fruits! Nikita’s Gift is a cross between an American Persimmon variety and a Japanese variety. The fruit is astringent until ripe and soft, and so far only one has been ready to eat. That was a real treat, and I scooped out the orange flesh with a spoon and ate it as a snack. The tree gave us 14 fruits this year, and with any luck will give us even more in the years to come.
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 please take a minute and check out what everyone is harvesting!
Wow more peppers. There was a persimmon tree in the garden of a gite in France where we once stayed. No-one harvested then but the birds loved them. We would have had some but they weren’t ripe.
Congrats on persimmons! Though I wonder how many you had to bite and spit out before you found a ripe one. Enjoy your well-deserved break from blogging, and thanks for all you’ve done for us, your readers.
I learned my lesson on persimmons some time ago Will! This first one was squishy soft, so I was pretty sure it would be edible.
Dave – just wanted to say thanks a lot for your blog posts through the gardening season! I always learn a lot and get inspired to try new things.
BTW what is your assessment of the no-till experiment you did this year? Do you think you will continue with it?
I am happy with the no-till bed and how it has done Susan. I am planning on doing another bed or two that way next year. I can see me transitioning to all no-till in a couple of years, though I will need to do some tilling for sweet potatoes.
Thank you for continuing to host Harvest Monday and will look forward to the return in February. Here in San Diego my winter garden harvests are just beginning. Hope readers will check in at ediblegardens52.com I’m eating my neighbor’s Hachiya persimmons these days. Yours seem to resemble the softer, Hachiya variety that are astringent until squishy ripe. The Japanese Fuyu persimmon is eaten crunchy like an apple. Roasted pepper soup sounds delicious. Thank you for the idea. Hope you have a bountiful greenhouse and late season garden this winter.
I planted a couple of Fuyus here some years ago Sue, but they were only marginally hardy and didn’t survive. I love eating them, and thankfully Costco has them this time of year. I don’t know the exact parentage of Nikita’s Gift, but the fruits are a bit more flat than the Hachiyas and more like the American type in shape.
I will be sure and check in on your blog and I hope my readers will too!
I don’t blame you for taking a break. Here in southern California, gardening goes on 365 days a year. But I got discouraged when a heat wave wiped me out and am taking a short break before planting my fall garden.
Love your persimmon post! I have a Fuyu persimmon that has been producing for about 3-4 years now. Because of the drought out West, we didnt get good fruit set this year, only 16 persimmons. But we are savoring them! I took a photo of the one I picked yesterday, but I don’t see how to post it in the comment box. Fuyu persimmons are firm and hard when ripe, with a crunchy texture and sweet taste. Love ‘em.
Like I told Sue, I tried Fuyus here but they weren’t hardy enough. I love to eat them fresh and dehydrated.
I followed your timing for collards this year Dave and they have done well, so that will be a nice boost to our brassica harvest over winter! Sorry to see you go until February, my harvests are on the rise again now as we finish the transition from summer to winter crops : All the best – Steve