Spring in Sonoma

Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems.  ~Rainer Maria Rilke

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With a break in the rain, I dashed out to the garden to take some photos. I want to share what’s going on in our edible garden this spring. With all the much needed rain, the plants are all just bursting with life.

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These beautiful iris side track me. So vivid against the green in the front yard.

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Vincent Van Gogh would be inspired. These bulbs were planted long ago, and still come up every year, like clock work. It is amazing to me they know just when to open and bloom.

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The kitchen garden is doing very well with all the rain. The spinach and chard I planted in this box back in January have been going strong. The spinach is cold tolerant, and does just fine out in the open.

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If you ask me, you can never have too much spinach or chard. It cooks down a lot, so you always need more than you think. Tonight, I will throw some on mushroom ravioli, and serve with pesto sauce. Spinach is easy to grow, and is so good. I buy my spinach and chard seeds from The Natural Gardening Company. They are in Petaluma, Ca and are the oldest certified organic nursery in the United States.

I have never grown lettuce in the winter/spring, so this year we decided to try it in our hoop house. My husband gave this to me for Christmas. What a stellar gift, one that keeps on giving!

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I planted two types of lettuce and some more spinach at the end of January. It took about a month for the lettuce to start producing tender heads. We have been eating fresh lettuce and spinach for over a month now. All I can say is, “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”

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The seeds were bought online from Seeds of Change. Great company. The two varieties here are Waldmann’s Dark Green and Emerald Oak Leaf. Super easy to grow and delicious to eat.

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it is sort of luscious, like a hot house in here. The plants really like it. There is a sunflower coming up, as well as some tomatillos.

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The artichoke plants have sprung back to life. They amaze me. By summer’s end, the plants are completely dried up and gone. Then, as the rains start after Christmas, like a phoenix, the plants rise from the dead trunk and become vibrant again. And if you peek inside one, look!

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A baby artichoke. In a few more weeks, we will harvest these little babies. They come in strong until June. I can’t wait.

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Garlic bed looks good. The plants are a little small this year, because of the drought, but maybe with all this late rain, they will catch up by harvesting time in June.

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The strawberries are covered with flowers. Good things are coming. We usually just eat these all here, in the garden. Very few make it inside the house…

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The blueberries are almost ready too. Same thing here, they get eaten on site. Not many make it to the kitchen.

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I planted some snow peas a week or two ago. I save these seeds, but bought a new variety this year from the folks at Kitazawa Seed Co. I have been using their seeds for years now. All delicious and reliable. The snow peas or sugar snap peas are a great choice if you want to grow only one thing that will do well. They are prolific. All you need is some dirt, and a trellis of some sort.

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I planted mine in a bed, with a bamboo trellis. You can find the trellis at a nursery or make your own. Totally.Worth.It. The peas are another item in the garden that get eaten on site. But quite a few do make it to the kitchen. They are good to eat raw or cooked. And the seeds are super easy to save.

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I hope everyone is out in the garden, enjoying nature. Life is reborn in the spring, and it’s never too late to start your own garden.

The beautiful spring came, and when Nature resumes her loveliness, the human soul is apt to revive also. ~Harriet Ann Jacobs

 

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