Veggie Starts

As we move closer and closer to Spring, it’s time to start getting the garden in gear.  I’ve got seeds or starts already going for tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, onions, kale, lettuce, calendula, and potatoes.  I still need to work on my herbs and lavender. This year, we decided to try using a portable hot house.  Last month we set it up and started our seeds to see how it would work for us.

hothouse

We added a set of plastic shelves and planted the seeds.

hothouse1

For a few days the weather stayed warm and the seeds stayed outside.  Then we dipped below freezing.  I left the starts out there for the first night and they seemed ok.  The hot house kept temperature, but by the second night of below freezing temps, the hot house froze and I was a little worried about the starts.  We moved them inside and kept an eye on them.  The temps were again warm this weekend and I moved my little starters back outside and was happy to see some sprouting occurring.

sprouts1

Kale

sprouts

Pickling Cucumbers

Tonight the temps are supposed to get below freezing again so my starts will be indoors, but tomorrow we are on a warming trend for a few days and outside to the hot house they will return.

Canning Turnips

My brother-in-law “threw out some turnip seeds to see what would happen.”  The result was astonishingly large turnips, which he just left in the field after eating a few.

We gleaned a lot of them.  They are sweet when raw and extremely tasty when cooked.  We stored several boxes in the cellar, but also decided to can up lots of them.  It took 2 days with 2 canners (as one was cooling down the other was heating up)

and we netted 43 quarts of processed turnips.

I think we are good for now.

Onion Chronicles Monday 3/21/11

I was able to transplant the onions to some dirt from the yard last Monday afternoon.  As you can see, they really took off.

We just have them in the kitchen window because it still does get into the 30’s at night.  I love how they are reaching towards the sunlight.  Can you believe there has been that much growth since last Monday?  One or two might be ready for cutting and eating.

We planted two more on Wednesday to see how they would compare to the first batch.  They didn’t grow at all, so we took them out of the dirt and put them in a dish of water like we did with the first batch.  They started growing in the water.  I will transplant them into the dirt later today.

Onion Chronicles

Did you know that you can regrow green onions?  Seriously, how many like me, just cut up your onions and then threw away that precious bulb “waste” never thinking about it again?  Yup, I was one of those.  I would get my green onions from the store, then cut up, throw away, go about my day and repeat time after time.  Well, no more.  I have since learned that you can regrow your onions 3 or 4 times!  So, after cutting up a few stalks of green onions last week (for a meal of potato soup and another of chicken fried rice) we are re-growing those onions.  It’s been raining all weekend and I haven’t gotten any soil from outside to replant the onion bulbs, so I just put them in a bowl of water for now and they have already started to grow.

If you look closely you will see where they’ve already taken off and started their regrowth.  Hopefully (that means, if I can remember) each Monday we will chronicle the growth of our onions so you (and I) can see how quickly these guys will regrow and you can have supplies of onions all year long with just a small investment.