Garden Snapshot, May 25, 2015

This has been a week of wind and frost. And, a week of abundant harvests of flowers and vegetables. The lilacs are in full bloom, and I'm making good use of their rich & fragrant flower heads in bouquets.

150520 purple white bouquet

In the photo above: purple lilacs, dark purple Parrot tulips, purple allium, white lilacs, baby white narcissus, pheasant's eye narcissus, large soft pink-white tulip, lily of the valley, grape vines with buds, etc.

Stocks are blooming in the low tunnels - beautiful flowers and beautiful fragrance! These were part of a trial planting this year. Definitely planting many more of them in the future!

150522 stocks

From the greenhouse... the first cherry tomato of the season! Delicious!

It's amazing that they are ripening so early! Eating fresh tomatoes in May was worth putting up the greenhouse - the main crop of tomato plants hasn't even been planted into the garden yet!

It won't be long until the cucumbers and peppers will be ready in the greenhouse. Some of the peppers are thumb-sized already, and there are many baby cucumbers forming on the plants.

150523 first cherry tomato

Meanwhile, by the water cooler...

The first hatch of ducklings are doing very well on pasture. They are in a spacious pen with their mom, and love to bask in the sunshine. They can run faster than the average person, and they are expert fly-catchers already!

150522 duck and ducklings

We had frost on Friday night, and that was hopefully the last frost of the Spring. As I was going around covering frost-sensitive plants, I passed by the low tunnels, and found that 2 of them had split wide open! Yikes!! What bad timing!!! If they were going to fall apart, it would have been nice if it had happened a day later instead of a few hours before a frost!

150522 split low tunnels

With all the wind we've had this Spring (especially that day), the covers flapped against the rope long enough to be worn through. The fabric split open in several places along the rope, and eventually opened right up.

Duct tape to the rescue! It took a while, but the covers were eventually patched up enough to hold for the night. As I was working away, I reached in and pulled out a radish to snack on every couple minutes (nothing like a just-picked radish - so refreshingly crunchy and mellow).

150522 napa cabbage under cover

Above: a peek through a rip in the low tunnel... napa cabbage. It will be ready to make into kim chi in just a couple weeks.

It took a few hours to cover all the plants (with either straw or dirt or fabric row covers) before the frost. It was worth the effort though, as any leaf that was sticking out was frosted beyond recovery.

I did not cover the cold-hardy crops - and ended up losing a batch of cauliflower and napa cabbage! I was especially surprised about the cauliflower, as it can usually take that bit of cold. Oh well, that is a small loss compared to the number of seedlings that were saved.

Now that the last frost is behind us, there are thousands of seedlings to be transplanted this coming week, plus many seeds. Lots of delicious food to come!!