Yesterday was a nice day of work in the garden. I spent the morning screening 25 gallons of compost from my fourth bin and I turned two other bins full of compost. My plants are growing great with the chicken and worm enriched compost. I have not fertilized anything but the grass this year. Self sufficiency at its best. I have included photos so you can see the progress of the bins from the first, second and third bins.
While screening the compost I was able to collect a couple pounds of redworms to add back to my main worm bin to get my polulation back in line so I can sell some.
I have been eating radishes and I am excited to report that my spinach and lettuce is big enough to harvest. I am excited as I will be eating out of the garden for the rest of the summer into fall with little need to buy produce from the store other than fruit items as my little orchard is still growing. My spring salad includes baby lettuce from my whisky barrels, baby spinach, chives, radishes, carrot tops and green onion. The chives have flowers which add intense flavor to the salad. I trim the lettuce with scissors rather than pull it out as it grows back. I will add some fresh peas to the salad when they come into season.
I also have several herbs that have overwintered including crinkle and italian parsley, taragon, dill, oregano and rosemary. I will buy several types of basil today. We like to make a chimichurri sauce with the fresh herbs and olive oil. I am the king of stir fry when the summer vegetables come in.
I will have strawberries and raspberries in the next month. My asian pear has about twenty fruit and my espalier pear tree has about fifteen pears starting to grow. I should pick the fruit off to allow the trees to use all their energy to grow but I am too curious to see if the fruit will mature this year. I harvested three asian pears last year. They are sweet and taste like pear but they have the texture and firmness of an apple. My two dwarf peach trees have a few fruit but the trees are too dense to take a good photo at this stage of growth. My apples are a few years away from much production.
I am off to the nursery today to purchase seedlings for my summer vegetable crop. I am planning to buy twelve tomatoes, six types of squash, a pumpkin, green peppers, cayenne, jalopeno, kung pao and anaheim peppers, eggplant, basil, cucumbers and whatever else catches my interest. As I have overplanted the spring vegetables (not leaving enough room for the summer veggies), I will be planting the squash, cucumbers and pumpkin in containers. I will place the containers throughout the garden to act as a living mulch when they spread out and eventually take over the space from the spring crop.
I also found one brocolli head growing. There is nothing better than broccoli cut and immediately steamed with a little butter.
Well off to the nursery. I love this time of year. I will conclude with a few pictures of my chicken helpers who ate half of my worm profits yesterday while “helping” me turn the compost.