Monday, June 30, 2014

How Our Garden Grows, Part IV: The Hot Weather Arrives

Garlic scapes abound in late June at Cafe Drake HRV.

Dried garlic stored by the stove for easier access. Fresher than can be believed is the taste of garden foraged garlic.

And more garlic scapes.

Just pulled garlic curing in the sun; the fresh kind needs to dry for at least a week before being ready for cooking.

The mud room temporarily became a garlic processing plant. Bottom left and continuing clockwise: garlic scapes are separated before being stored in the fridge; a pile of garlic refuse ready for composting; garlic bulbs cut and soon to begin the drying process; piles more to go before we sleep (or nap).

left to right plantings: Asian long beans; Red Russian kale; kohlrabi (Gaps in between are from harvested salad greens, now dormant until cooler weather returns in Autumn. Look closely and you'll see a few emerging seedlings signaling our mid-Summer crop of mizuna, amaranth and assorted Japanese and Indian stir-fry greens.

Now, finally, the largest garden bed is arranged in tidy rows. Left to right: okra; kohlrabi; tomatilloes; assorted basils and shiso; long beans; Tuscan kale; dill and tomatoes. Potted plants will soon be ready for transfer to the garden bed and include Thai green chilies, poblano peppers and tomatoes (Yellow Pear, Brown Cherry and Pink Brandywine).


Our trusty owl protects young plants from garden marauders.

The last of the viable lettuces, at least until the cooler days of September. We kept these going by planting in a large, shallow container, moved a couple of weeks ago to semi-shade.
Give us 12 square inches of yard and we'll create a tarragon patch! This herb loves hot weather, bright sun and moist soil.

Salad Bowl in the Lawn!

Those who love only dappled light have found a happy home on the front porch.

Rau Ram, or Vietnamese Coriander, grows like a tenacious weed, but as we learned last summer, disappears and dies as quickly if exposed to bright sun. The smokey, earthy tasting herb is also known as laksa, the ingredient giving the iconic Malaysian soup its name.

We all know gardening requires patience in spades - pun intended - and mitsuba pushes the limits. Glacially slow to germinate and then grow, the Japanese herb tolerates sun but only in controlled doses. Its perfumey, somewhat citrus-like flavor is well worth the wait.

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