Friday, July 8th, 2011

Garden Report: The Start of the Haul


My little garden continues to surprise and amaze —it seems steamy days and fierce nighttime downpours are a prescription for happy vegetation. I swear that my ragged jack kale plant literally tripled in size after being cloaked in humidity and bathed in summer rain. Lucky for now (knock on wood) the bunnies still haven’t penetrated my defenses (maybe I’ve been way too paranoid, maybe they actually have no interest in my garden at all?), but we do have copulating beetles that like to screw on top of the string bean leaves and then nibble on them afterwards (it’s like garden porn). I don’t know if this is an issue because they don’t actually bother with the beans. It’s more of a visual annoyance. Anyway, here’s the latest glamour shots:
Plump gorgeous string beans. Conor and Belle love picking these, which has been an added benefit to this garden, seeing them enjoy getting their little hands dirty and learning where this stuff actually comes from (corny, yes, but true). And for dinner Belle literally polished off the entire bowl of beans we’d picked, which I gently steamed and then served with a bowl of sort-of-green-goddess dressing; sort of because I was missing some ingredients, but I ended up mixing 1/2 cup mayo, 1/2 cup 2% yogurt, 4 anchovy fillets, 2 tbs champagne vinegar, a big bunch of parsley from the garden (roughly chopped); a smaller bunch of chives (also roughly chopped), about 10 mint leaves, salt and pepper in a blender. Usually I add watercress too and maybe some basil, but it was fine without.

The day’s haul also included some kale, another jalapeno (these have been doing great in the garden) and some parsley.

Today I pulled out a baby beet. I think they’re all going to be “babes” in size—maybe because the plantlings had several in a bunch and when we put them in the ground they were too crowded to grow large. I’m going to see how this one tastes and if it’s sweet and good I might pull them all.Here’s the ragged jack I mentioned—I swear it was like one leaf on Wednesday and today it looked like this. It’s very different than the other kale I’m growing, it almost resembles arugula (disregard the weeds…this garden is organic, and I could spend everyday weeding, they just come right back).

Everyday there are thick beans like this hanging on the vine.

The zucchini blossoms are still coming in—they actually keep getting bigger and more vibrant, they’re almost buxom, the Marilyn Monroes of the garden. I want to keep picking and frying them but then I won’t ever get any zucchinis, right?

And here’s a preview of what’s coming up…the tomatoes are everywhere, doing so nicely, I can’t wait. I’m thinking of picking a few of them green and making a batch of fried green tomatoes. I found this recipe from Garden & Gun magazine (this is not a publication from the NRA, it’s actually a terrific and interesting Southern lifestyle magazine). They call them “slices of heaven”—sounds about right.
And these spectacular radishes…which, truth be told, I did not grow. They come from Stone Barns (thanks NN!) but they did provide inspiration for what I’d like to try and grow next year.

So that’s the garden report for this week. Now I need to pluck a few more blossoms because they look too good not to eat.

One Response to Garden Report: The Start of the Haul

  1. Sarah says:

    I’m so impresses with your garden. Ours got killed by the drought this year. Hopefully we’ll have more success with the cool weather planting.

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