Salad Days

digit(ID/WA)May 30, 2014

Deep in the bowl . . . how about you?

Oh, it will be a long while before the cucumbers (plants have just gone out) and tomatoes (plants have just gone out) produce anything.

I'm no longer "cheating," however - lettuce was coming from under the hoops 3 weeks ago. Now, lettuce is from plants set out in the garden. First spinach (from seed) was harvested yesterday (from seed). There was a small handful of green onions a week ago, plenty now. Well, the onions are from sets so far. (Always feel like I'm "cheating" using sets. :o)

A nice harvest of radish, kale and bok choy for awhile . . . I've even got my Portuguese kale! (Won't be having that raw, however. ;o) Might be leafing something out . . . What's showing up in your salad bowl?


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We have some cut and come again greens plus the chard wintered over and has had leaves for months. We love fresh asparagus with our greens, too.

What i am salivating about is the fruit that is being promised:

Honey Crisp

Pie Cherries

Granny Smith

    Bookmark   May 30, 2014 at 12:22PM
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ZachS. z5 Littleton, CO

We have some lettuces, radishes, green onions from thinning the rows. I don't grow a whole lot cool season vegetables in the spring, usually wait until fall.

Looking at your fruit with great envy, Luckybottom! From what I have seen, all we have is quince, and who honestly eats quince? Honestly, we didn't even know what the tree was until this winter when I found a picture of it in one of my books. We called them "fuzzy pear-apples" for years, and have always just let the squirrels have their way with those tree-rocks.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2014 at 3:14PM
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You have quince? I LOVE quince! It makes an excellent jelly.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2014 at 5:24PM
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One never knows the direction these posts will take!

I was thinking more about:

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 11:20PM
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How about this as a promise for salad?

This Kimberley would be my earliest ripe tomato.

I have just moved it into a large pot in my backyard. Kimberley is a small plant but I want it to grow some before it gets into fruiting. I took the fruit off. There are several more of these cute little tomatoes that originated about 30 years ago in Kimberely, BC. They all had/have fruit just like this one.


    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 11:31PM
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ZachS. z5 Littleton, CO

Haha, sorry!

Alright Steve, is this more on track? I only grow a few every year since I don't like to eat them, more because it's a quick, easy, "instant gratification" crop. Lettuce will have to picked, ready or not, by the end of the week, else I will come back the 21st to it all gone to seed. Disappointing since my "speckles" bibb is just starting to head and only about half as big I know it can get.

I'll be sure and save you some quince, matter of fact probably all of it. I'm not sure if they ever actually get ripe though because they stay rock hard no matter how long you leave them on tree it seems.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2014 at 8:33AM
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Peas play an important role in my quest for fresh, cucumbers too! But, it will probably be another 3 or 4 weeks for the peas and forever for the peas (You know, snow peas and cucumbers are actually, fruits. Aren't they?)

Have you ever cooked a radish, Zach? They are not on par with water chestnuts but add "crunch" to a stir-fry. Smoothes out the heat, too.

Hey! If the lettuce begins to get ahead of you, find a recipe for wilted lettuce salad. Surprisingly tasty to have lettuce (almost) cooked!


    Bookmark   June 1, 2014 at 3:12PM
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ZachS. z5 Littleton, CO

I haven't grown peas in years because of the low yield per plant. I just don't want to dedicate that much growing space when peas, while I do enjoy them, are not something I eat all that often anyways. Although, I just added another 9x7' "addition" to the garden this morning so either for this fall or next spring I'll put some there to help the soil a little bit (Although, that used to be part of the chicken run until I moved it so the soil was actually in a lot better shape than I expected.)

My cucumbers just came up last week, so I'll be waiting a while for them as well. I do love cucumbers and pickles, too. They are one of the few vegetables I grow every single year, no matter what.

I have been told to try cooking them, but I didn't grow enough this year to actually try it (that pile you see was about 3/4 of the radishes planted, I left the rest in since I ran out seed this year and I need some more). It's not the heat that bothers me, I like wasabi, horseradish, and mustard greens, there is just something about salad radishes I don't particularly like. I was going to try winter radishes this year to see if they are any better, but I didn't get any seed.

I may have to try that, or, just trust that someone around here knows what lettuce looks like when it needs to be picked while I'm not around lol. If not, Ill have to let them know NOT to cut the flower stalks off like they did last year. Luckily I was able to dig up some old "tom thumb" and "speckles" seeds I had bought a 2-3 years ago.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2014 at 4:54PM
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Deal! on the quince. No, they won't get soft, I don't think. Quince is meant to be cooked, not eaten uncooked.

Everyone's salad photos are lovely. I missed the spring planting window so hopefully will get some for fall.

My onion-y things are coming up -- onions, garlilc, and shallots. Too bad I didn't start any leeks.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2014 at 5:54PM
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I have harvested shallots while green and fresh.

Everyone who grows them should try that . . . once. They are another low production veggie. At maturity, they have some real value. It can't be economically wise to snatch them out of the ground early . . .

Still, what are we growing these things for if it isn't to pamper ourselves?

it's my food and I'll play with it if i want to!

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 12:28AM
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ZachS. z5 Littleton, CO

I think our salad days are nearly done here. 93 degrees and my lettuce looked like it had literally melted lol. Time to pick it and stash it in the fridge for a couple days.

"At maturity, they have some real value. It can't be economically wise to snatch them out of the ground early . . . "

Steve, you never know what folks are willing to buy. I see all kinds of things being sold as "gourmet" that just look like someone just went through thinning their rows haha. And they fetch high prices! All you have to do is put a fancy French sounding word in front of it and folks will shell out the cash. Instead of calling them baby, or green shallots try "fillette shallots".

I see restaurants serving regular broccoli as "broccoli raab" all the time. All they do is cut the stems on piece of broccoli longer and say "viola!" (In their defense, they probably just don't know that there is actually a botanical difference.)

And don't forget the fanciful (and ridiculous) tale of 1500 year old bean seeds found in a Mexican cave...It's all about your marketing Steve, I'm sure you could find a way to sell ;).

This post was edited by ZachS on Tue, Jun 3, 14 at 18:45

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 6:26PM
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DW got some Egyptian Walking onions a year or two ago. I guess they are either Egyptian or Walking onions.

This is the second time she has done this. I find them too hot and their very early arrival each year puts them at being available the same time as the chives, which I do like.

Anyway, I want to try the top-sets to learn if they are a little tamer but strongly suspect not. They are just beginning that stage.

Wouldn't they be "scapes" as with garlic? Oh, maybe not . . . should work out a good marketing name. Scapes, scallions, shallots . . . Egyptian stallions? Sylvester stallones? . . . I may need more time. . .


This post was edited by digit on Thu, Jun 5, 14 at 19:26

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 7:24PM
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Laughing too hard to type...

OK, the print out from one place that sells them says: "Underground bulbs have a very strong flavor" plus "the stalk bulblets are somewhat spicy and are delicious pickled."

We harvest our underground versions while fairly small and mostly cook with them, which tames the hotness quite a bit. I have only used the stalk bulblets for replanting, giving away or pickling. My dad loved the pickles bulblets in his gimlets.

The price in the catalog is $17.95 for an ounce (about 25-30 bulblets). I have given away hundreds of dollars of these things. Got mine from 4th generation German farmer in my neighborhood. He has since passed on, and I always think of him whenever someone mentions Walking onions.

The catalog also calls them: tree onions, Top setting onions and smaller relative of the Catawissa onion. But I love Sylvester stallones.

Here is a link that might be useful: Egyptian Walking Onion

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 8:06PM
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