Exploring the world of fiber, one draft at a time

My posting can be as frequent or infrequent as my spinning, so be as patient as that fiber, sitting in my stash.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Bit of non fibery goodness

First, I realize I haven't blogged in forever. Life is like that for me. I spend an equal amount of time at the computer every day, but what I do on the computer during that time varies extensively. Now and then I realize I have neglected some areas and have to play catch up.

Although knitting and spinning are a major part of my life, I do have lots of other interests, hobbies, loves and commitments. I thought I would share one of those today, my love of gardening.

I love gardening for many reasons, but this fall I got to experience one of those reasons that rarely happen. Things finally fell into place for me to try a fall planting of some greens. And although I will have to harvest the last of them today before the first hard frost hits over this weekend, and although they are still by many standards tiny, they are a chance to experience greens unlike those one can grow in the spring.

Here's a plate of the tender dainties just before I put my chicken salad on top of them:

There are two types of leaf lettuce, green and red as well as baby spinach and chard leaves in that mix. They taste like that perfect spring lettuce.

The thing about spring lettuce is one can get those tender non bitter leaves for only two weeks at least in my gardening zone. The frequent rain and rapidly increasing heat of spring sends the leaves into a frenzy of growth and they are soon bitter and trying to form seeds. Well, who can blame them, that's their job!

However, the drier fall weather as well as a more stable and cooler temps in the fall meant they grew very slowly, staying small and mild.

Why is this amazing? Well, it's all about luck, true luck. The seeds had to have enough moisture to sprout (often the fall is too dry) we had to have enough non frost days to let them even get this big. I could try to do this again every year from now on, and not get this type of success. And that's why I love to garden!

The lettuce just before picking:

Spinach and radishes( did not do as well)

Two thirds of the harvest (I left some in the garden as an experiment on just how long it will survive the cold)


cyndy said...

Always good to see what yu have been working on...enjoyed seeing your above posts!

Your greens are lovely! You should also try winter sowing. There are certain varieties that you can start in the fall, and they will winter over, and start growing again next spring. Early bird lettuce! (spring tonic!)

Cindy said...

Lost in the moderation learning curve, with thanks to Pete:

if your readers are looking for more information on USDA plant hardiness zones, there is a detailed, interactive USDA plant hardiness zone map at http://www.plantmaps.com/usda_hardiness_zone_map.php