Monday, February 16, 2009

Another Winter Harvest

With the warm days last week, the snow really melted and made checking in the cold frames possible at last. Just as the parsnips were insulated with a snow blanket, so too were the cold frames. I have three frames that were planted and at least two of them have nice lettuce that survived our very cold January. These frames were planted last October. One frame had napa type cabbage and two others had a variety of lettuce transplants and ornamental kale in them. The napa is good thru about November but can't take the real cold. The lettuce was some of the last seed in packets and other mixed seed that I use for micro greens. I will need to keep much better records of the lettuce varieties this year; but as you can see in the pictures the plants survived the snow and cold nicely. Cold frames are an excellent season extender. Look for plans on how I make mine in a March blog entry. Then you will have time to build cold frames and use them this spring.

This year there are 10 varieties of lettuce to go in the garden. As you can see I really enjoy planting lettuce and find my best success with seeding flats of lettuce that I transplant into any open space in the garden all season long. Here are the varieties for 2009:

Delta Dawn/ Continuity/ Petite Rouge/ Crisp Mint/ Flashy Butter Oak/ Bullet Romaine
Truckee/ Breen/ Red Cross / Red Summer Crisp/ Australe
Odyssy (This seed is pelleted so it is very easy to plant in celpacks)/
Matina Sweet/ Tom Thumb ( a favorite small butterhead lettuce)/ Cimmaron

The first lettuce and Arugula will be planted in the greenhouse sometime in March. Now that the plastic is up, the space is really warming nicely. However, we are still getting cold nights. This morning the temperature was only 6 degrees - too cold even for tough mustard and mesclun to get started in trays so I will have to wait.

Tonight we can have "FRESH" lettuce from the garden again. Can't wait for tomatoes!
Happy Gardening

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