Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Joys of Fall Planting

It's time for Fall Crops!  I have been very clear of my love of hot weather, summer sun, the ability to float in water for hours on end . . . yes, I know I have.  But I must say that the Fall crops really make me happy. They are more resilient; I don't worry them so.  And I love Arugula and Radishes and Leaf Lettuces and Beets and Broccoli   All of which are planted in our garden.  And our Swiss Chard and Kale and Mustard Greens have made a lovely comeback from the hottest of the summer. The peppers are still going strong and I am still harvesting sungold tomatoes every morning, but in place of some the other warm weather crops who's time has come and gone, we have planted both plants and seeds of all of our favorites.  Now - all that we need is some Fall weather and some luck with my chicken wire "covers" over and around our planters.  Our squirrels think we are a shopping destination, so provided we slow down our "sharing" with them, we should be harvesting some really wonderful things from very soon until November.
Black Seeded Simpson and Red Leaf Lettuces (planted in a number of places)
Baby Arugula - 2 Kinds - Just getting started

French Breakfast and Philadelphia White Radishes (one of two big pots)

These Fall crops are so versatile.  Don't feel limited by "old" approaches. As a kid, I hated beets, for example, because, they, along with lots of other veggies, were cooked into a mushy, flavorless consistency.  Roasted Beets and fresh mild goat cheese is always amazing, but raw beets, shaved nearly see through thin, are delicious over hot greens or cold salad greens.   A pasta with broccoli, beets, and great grated cheese will surprise you. Arugula, just harvested, sprinkled with great extra virgin olive oil, a splash of good vinegar and salt and pepper makes an amazing partner to a simple baked potato. And radishes with some fabulous butter, sea salt, great bread and a couple of hunks of cheese is so much more than a snack. Actually, every thing I have mentioned is great raw as well as cooked. All are very healthy as well as being delicious when harvested for immediate use.

Cold crops are definitely worth extending the growing season for; I hope you consider making them part of your edible garden!

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