April 28, 2023

Garden Notes: April 2023


  • 1st: 0.375"
  • 7th: 0.25" 
  • 8th: 1.55"
  • 14th: 0.5" 
  • 16th: 0.2"
  • 22nd: 0.7"
  • 26th:  0.75"
  • 27th: 2.55"
  • 28th: 0.65"
  • 30th: 0.255"
  • Total: 7.75 inches

  • range of nighttime lows: 36 to 66°F (2 to 19°C)
  • range of daytime highs: 47 to 84°F (8 to 29°C)

Weather Notes
  • We've had lovely temperatures for much of the month, but the wind has been brisk and cold.

  • buckwheat
  • corn (Trucker's Favorite)
  • sunflowers (Mammoth Russian)
  • tomato transplants (Black Krim and Celebrity)
  • Swiss chard (variety of seeds)
  • black turtle beans
  • amaranth (Golden Giant, or is it Giant Golden? I can never remember.)
  • cowpeas (Ozark Razorback)
  • cucumbers (landrace)
  • and

seed potatoes

The sprouted potatoes are from the pantry. The others I bought at my locally owned grocery store. They were only 39¢ per pound, so I was pleased to find them. When I checked out, the gal told me they were sent to them by mistake. Food delivery errors aren't returned, so they offered them for sale at an unusually good price. When I planted them, I augmented the soil with bone meal and azomite minerals, so I'm hoping they'll do well. 



Edible pod peas. Can you see the first pod
in the lower right-hand corner of the photo?


Sunchokes (Jersusalem artichokes)

Sweet potato slips

I don't have good windows for plants and plant starts, so I decided to try our bathroom window for starting some sweet potato slips. They seem happy there. I have three varieties: Vardamans, Georgia Jets, and a purple variety I got two years ago from Misfits. It's the purple that's produced all those sprouts. The Vardaman is finally putting out a few roots (no sprouts yet) and the Georgia Jet has done nothing. These produced well, although with lots of odd, lumpy shapes. They haven't stored well, however, so no great loss if they don't sprout.


handfuls of asparagus for snacks and salads

strawberries for our granola

fall planted lettuce

I planted a lot of lettuce last fall, but most of it didn't survive our cold winter. This one did though, and together with wild greens, offers us delicious salads. 

spring planted radishes

volunteer lambs quarter

First harvests of lambs quarter are for steamed or sauteed greens. I've got plenty volunteering, however, and hope to can quite a few pints. It's our favorite winter green.

As you can see, our gardening season is off to a good start! May promises to be just as busy, and hopefully, we'll have a good harvest season.

Your turn. How does your garden fare?


daisy g said...

I see you must have gotten some of this glorious rain we've had for the last two days. I emptied our rain gauge this morning, 3"!

You already have enough food to make some proper meals! What a great jump start you have!

Enjoy your weekend, Leigh!

Rosalea said...

I am always amazed at how much further ahead your seasons are. Enjoying your pictures of green and growing things! No sign of my sunchokes yet, no sign of asparagus, dandelions are just sending out their first small leaves...Buds are swelling on apple trees, but not out yet....Daffodils are budded... Crinkled, dark green rhubarb leaves are poking up. Soon it will be our turn!
Would be interested in how you can lamb's quarters?

Leigh said...

Daisy, yes we did! 3.2" in the rain gauge for the past two days. The other thing we have a lot of is eggs. So we are definitely getting some good homegrown meals. :)

Rosalea, we start early but then everything balks when it gets too hot and we don't get enough rain! That's the summer challenge this far south.

I can the lamb's quarter as per Ball Blue Book's instructions for greens. Pressure process pints for 1 hour 10 minutes (quarts require 1 hour 30 minutes). They make a wonderful vegetable, or sometimes I cream them for soup. :)

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

Leigh, we are (probably) in the final transition from Spring to Summer, so I have about two weeks to get everything in. Fortunately, due to my changed job situation, I have a lot more time work on it (!)

The sweet potato slips I put in have struggled a bit due to our lack of solid warm weather, but I think that is coming. Garlic and leaks and onions are hanging on. My job over the next few days is to re-orient how the garden is set up (including re-positioning the ollahs), planting, and putting in a drip system - given my upcoming travels and our dodgy weather, it is just something that needs to happen.

Ed said...

We may have asparagus but that is about it right now. I'm hoping for mushrooms yet but already it seems too dry for them with no real significant rain in the forecast.

I still struggle with your lamb quarters which the farmer in me seems as a noxious weed. Perhaps if more people ate them, we could eradiate it from the farm fields.

Leigh said...

TB, sounds like you have a big job to do! But I think it will result in great benefit down the road, so having the time is one of those silver linings.

Ed, if the lambs quarter was taking over our pasture, I'd probably feel differently about it too. One the other hand, the goats would eat it down, so maybe not. Mine only grows in the garden where I've allowed it to go to seed.

I do envy your mushrooms! That's a real treat for anybody.

Pioneer Woman at Heart said...

Looking good! I wish I had dropped radish seeds before all this rain, but we still have to put the pea fence back up after we had tilling done. I'm hoping this weekend, but they say rain for the next 5 days here. We are starting to get asparagus and rhubarb, and green onion and chives in the herb garden.

Leigh said...

Kristina, I've been trying to get seeds in the ground every time rain is in the forecast. Now I need to get some mulch down on the moist soil.

I envy your rhubarb! I've tried to grow it a couple of times, but it doesn't like our hot summers.

Goatldi said...

I still have kale, chard , trout lettuce going strong. I also have snap peas and radishes. Both are slowly growing with our interesting weather pattern. Two days ago I planted some yellow bell peppers in seed to the ground. I also got my asparagus to plant about a week ago. The weirdness is that in one short week we are due to go from the 80's and low 50's no rain . To lows in the low forties and snow level to 5000 ft and rain for the rest of us . HUH?

wyomingheart said...

Excellent start , Leigh! We have everything planted this week, and our strawberries are slow to come, due to the two freezes we had last week. Our potatoes were up about a foot, and they got frosted back, too. We have had some nice rain, however, and that certainty does help fix things a bit. Crossing fingers that the temps stay up and the rain keeps falling! Are your pears plentiful this year? Have a good weekend!

Leigh said...

Goatldi, your weird weather sounds like our normal weather, lol. You have a lot of lovely things growing - good eats soon!

Wyomingheart, sorry to hear about your potatoes. At least they'll grow again. I've stopped planting early potatoes years ago for that reason. I'm glad to hear the rest of your garden is planted. That's diligent work! I'm still plugging away on mine.

Pears look good so far. They do better for us than apples, so I really rely on them for fruit sauce. I need to propagate a few more!

daisy g said...

There are SO many successful gardeners here! Happy growing, everyone!

Leigh said...

Daisy, it's always fun to compare notes, isn't it? :)

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

So in the "That was unanticipated" section, we had a good 30 minute hail storm last night and yet another cold front. Weather is glorious today but I am skeptical.

Leigh said...

Wow, TB, that's a lot of hail! I hope it didn't do much damage.