Winter Update

Last week, I stopped by the garden.  I wanted to check the cold frame after the Christmas freeze when it dropped into single digits.  Also, I wanted to get more turnips.  I was pretty sure the arugula and kale were dead.  Right before the freeze up last month, I went out and got more arugula and harvested the broccoli.  Good thing, as they were reduced for the most part to compost.  The arugula will come back in the spring, but the broccoli is gone.

Broccoli bottom right, arugula middle right. That patch in front of the cold frame was kale.

Last time, I got some nice greens on the turnips, but after the extreme cold, there were only a few small inner greens left.

The greens in the cold frame had been nipped a little, but for the most part, I don’t think I’ll be needing to buy any lettuce for a while.

Unfortunately, there was quite a bit of winter kill on the rosemary bush, which I had neglected to wrap.  It’s hard to know whether to wrap each fall because for the most part we don’t get temperatures lower than the 20s F at night.  It’s a large plant, so I think it has a pretty good chance of recovery.

On my last trip, I discovered I had left my tool tub open and the torrential rains we got as part of the storm that blew across the country had filled it half full of water.  I did my best in the falling temperatures to salvage what I could, set things out to dry, and toss things that were no longer useable.  This week, I brought my hand tools home and cleaned, sharpened and oiled them, which they needed after being soaked, frozen and set out to dry.  Yesterday, I went through the Southern Exposure Seed Exchange catalog.  Next step is to check seeds I have on hand, check their dates, and whittle the order down a bit.  It’s still early, but I like to start thinking well in advance.

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33 Responses to Winter Update

  1. Dreams of spring warm us in the winter. Wonderful that your lettuce is still thriving. Lovely illustration on that catalog.

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  2. Lavinia Ross says:

    I get my seeds from SESE, too! They should be here soon.

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    • arlingwoman says:

      They give such good information on heat tolerance, disease resistance and even fall planting, that I really feel better about buying there. Wow, you’ve already bought yours! Good luck with the coming season.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. tonytomeo says:

    Ah turnips! Wild turnips are naturalized here, but are good only for greens, without significant roots. I have grown a garden variety of turnip greens, but the gophers took most of them. I have never grown turnip root in my garden. Neighbors do though.

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    • arlingwoman says:

      I really like them–you get the greens and the root and it’s a twofer! I have seen seeds for growing just the greens, but I want the roots too. I use them in stews and roasted mostly.

      Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        Yes, I would not have grown just the greens, but someone left the seed here. I do believe that those that produce only greens produce better greens, but I would prefer to get roots with them. I do not grow chard because I am not so keen on it, but am pleased that beets make good greens.

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      • arlingwoman says:

        Yes, and better greens than chard. Beets make nice salad greens as well as as sautéed. Unfortunately, the rabbits go after them because they’re sweet.

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      • tonytomeo says:

        I chop the stringy petioles into short bits and cook them separately. That way, I can cook them more, and cook the greens less. I do not mix them, but cook one or the other. There are much less petioles than greens.

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  4. Your winter looks very so nice, no snow, and you see green things is your garden.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You are working well in weather that keeps me out of the garden. Last time I sat on that kneeler thingy it toppled over, tipped me up, and I took half an hour to drag myself up

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    • arlingwoman says:

      Oh, gosh, Derrick. That’s not a good thing. I was feeling bad about not bringing it into shelter. It will last longer if stored, but I do have limited storage. I still haven’t been able to follow your new blog. My next step is going to be to try from a different device.

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  6. shoreacres says:

    Your seed catalogue stopped me for a minute. A friend in Lansing, Michigan often visits a spot called Southern Exposure: a place dedicated to gardens, fine dining, seasonal craft days, and weddings. After checking, her Southern Exposure doesn’t sell seeds, although they certainly would approve the cover of that seed catalogue.

    Even though I don’t garden, and never have, one of my favorite memories of winter days with my grandparents is of going through their seed packets. I don’t know how things are today (I should look!) but the art on those old packets was wonderful. I know that some have been reproduced as hangable kitchen art. It would be fun to cook home-grown veggies while surrounded by art like that.

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    • arlingwoman says:

      Southern Exposure is a seed exchange among seed breeders who select for traits for heat, humidity, disease resistance, etc., for the southern states. Although Lavinia in Oregon said she uses them as well. I guess it’s like people using Johnny’s (from Maine) in my community garden. Southern Exposure and a few others still have amazing illustrations on the packets. Burpee and Gurney’s are plain packets. I like those illustrations too.

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  7. Eliza Waters says:

    I hope your rosemary rebounds, I didn’t know it could take such extreme cold. It has been so mild here compared to previous years, more rain than snow. It won’t be long before your garden is growing again… time is flying ahead.

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  8. We’re having a not-very-good garden year here. The summer weather has been shocking. My sister lives three hours away and is eating tomatoes, cucumbers, and all sorts. Ours have just started flowering and we’re in the same weather zone! We grow lots of chard (but that’s for winter – and unhealthily fried in butter!) In spring/summer it’s lettuce lettuce lettuce!

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  9. TanGental says:

    Love the seed catalogue. We’re buying wild flowers seeds just now. It’ll be interesting to see what we can get this year

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    • arlingwoman says:

      I do like a packet of wildflowers. It’s always interesting which ones come back the next year. Not necessarily what I’d expect. Also it would be interesting to know what’s in wildflower packets in the UK.

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      • TanGental says:

        we mix a variety of poppies, cornflowers, gazinias, phlox, campion, sweetpeas, calendula, helichrysums, zinias with some plugs of corncockles, aquilegia, foxgloves. Maybe some daisies too. It sort of depends what we have either collected from last year or bought in over time

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  10. SueW says:

    i admire your gardening dedication, Lisa.

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  11. What a cute seed catalogue! Hey hi Lisa 😀 No gardening happening here of course but looking forward to the end of May. Sometimes, I can get sweet pea seeds put in in May. Just depends on the amount of frozen soil along the fence where I get them to climb.
    Thanks a bunch for your Christmas card. Awesome that your first year of retirement was enjoyed. Jim plans to retire this year and we hope to travel again. Time will tell if the Airlines get their 💩 together.
    Still designing paper things for Paige Taylor Evans, which I love and fills my time and blogging at Kelly Made It.com I’m actually going to be teaching at an event in New Jersey in April, so that’s fun. I’m hoping to go the week before with Jim to enjoy New York together.
    What do you make with Turnip? My dad used to roast them with potato in the oven.
    Bye for now, keep on enjoying life! xK

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    • arlingwoman says:

      Hey! Good to hear from you. I hope flying gets better soon as well, though mostly now I drive, unless it’s going to take more than an overnight. Good luck with your NJ work. Wow. As for turnip, I put it in stews, roast it with other winter veggies, mash it, and put it in salads. I’ve been wanting to pickle it, but haven’t got round to that yet. I’ve had it pickled in Middle Eastern delis. Yummy. Also, I use the greens–just sauté them–it’s like two veggies in one.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Sylvie Ge says:

    Gardening is not a job for the weak, it seems

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