Remember how I said I thought planting the cauliflower so close together would enable it to be "self-blanching?" Well, yes and no.
As I found out this morning, those little heads are quickly becoming big heads . . . and literally pushing the leaves out of the way. This has caused the sun to be able to hit some of the heads which in turn causes a purple-ish tinge to the desired snow white appearance of the heads. From what I've read, this bit of coloration does the cauliflower no harm. It's not a disease, fungus or pest, but rather is caused by a natural occurring substance called anthocyanin which is exacerbated by exposure to the sun. So I spent a bit of time using clothes pins to secure the leaves up and over the growing heads hoping that will at least prevent any more purple coloring to take place. (Gee golly, you really have to keep on your toes, don't cha?)
Now for some pictures.
Gotta say our potatoes are looking better this year than I can remember. Very lush plants that are just starting to blossom.
The asparagus has been left now to develop into ferns which are already over 7' tall. Papa Pea is cursing the spot we chose for the asparagus because the ferns block the view from the house of vehicles coming up our driveway before they enter the yard area. Oops.
Oh, how I love Sweet Pea flowers. Oh, how slowly they always grow. Each year at this point when the vines aren't more than a foot of the way up their trellis, I despair of ever having the fragrant blooms to bring into the house. (I know, patience, patience. I must exercise patience.)
The sugar snap peas are just starting to blossom as are the shell peas. Usually the snap peas are a couple of weeks ahead of the shell peas, but not this year. Hunh.
The beets are looking good compared to last year when the greens never grew much more than four or five inches tall and the beets themselves were only fair to middlin'. I have had trouble getting my beet seeds to germinate this year as you can see by the bare spot (which actually has tiny sprouts coming up after replanting twice) on the end of the row closest to the camera.
Not sure it's very clear in this picture, but I planted a row of purple carrots (the ones that are dark purple all the way through) on each outside end of this raised bed. Almost from the get-go, they were about a third taller than my regular Scarlet Nantes variety which makes up the rest of the planted carrots. Curious.
Onions, as always, do really well for me. This is one of three beds I planted this year.
Sweet peppers are finally putting on some size and have many blossom buds. And, yes, I still shut them up in their cold frame "nursery" each night and keep the cold frame closed on cooler days.
I've taken two cuttings from my mint bed which has yielded a total of approximately 4-3/4 cups of dried mint. The plants are still not filling out the bed as I'm hoping they will. Eventually. I hope.
Papa Pea has finished thinning the apples on all our apple trees. These shown are on our new dwarf trees and are nearly the size of a ping pong ball.
Those apples (strangely enough) are about twice as big as the ones on our older semi-dwarf trees. I'm campaigning to cut down the older trees and replant more dwarf apple trees and some cherry, apricot and peach trees. Perhaps even try some nut trees that will grow in our area.
Made another nice harvest of strawberries this morning. Total haul was 16 pounds and 3 ounces. I'm still keeping the three varieties we have separate to see how they compare at the end of the season.
Also brought in three more heads of broccoli for a total so far this year of four heads. We ate the first one but these current three went to Freezer Camp. Yay!
Spring Time in Gayland
4 hours ago