In my last installment of Veggie Tales I described some of the learning I was being forced to take in with regards to my garlic, for example. Now it’s time to move into a new learning phase. I’ve got the stuff planted, it’s growing….so now what do I do?
The other day I added two new residents to my veggie garden, purchased from the farmer’s market and grown locally:
That’s Gai Lan on the left and broccoli on the right. While checking on the other residents I noticed that some earth had been brushed aside from one of my radish plants and there was a bright, round, radish-red THING in the soil! And my multiplier onions are looking like….like scallions! Here they are:
And it made me wonder….how do I know when these things are ready? The radish leaves are still rather small, and they don’t look anything like the radishes I buy in the store with their long leaves and big bunches….And my salad isn’t ready to harvest quite yet, so what am I going to do with all these radishes? It was yet another example of how ignorant a city-girl can be when it comes to her food. I had to consult a book to figure out how to proceed here.
According to my Square Foot Gardening book (full of great information for us beginners!), radishes are ready for harvest about 4 weeks after planting. I planted my first batch of radishes on February 28. It has been fairly cold up until recently, but even so that was nine weeks ago. So I guess it’s no surpise that my first batch may be ready. It also suggests you plant them every few weeks to get a continuous harvest. Swiss chard and lettuce are also harvestable only 4 weeks after planting. Already it’s starting to look like salad in there, so that’s encouraging!
Carrots take much longer, about 10 weeks, so that explains why I’m only just now seeing tiny shoots coming up.
With regard to my onions, they are “multiplier onions” which means I’m supposed to get both scallions (green onions) from them AND onions. This website says that scallions can be harvested when they look ready. Well, mine look ready! And those I don’t harvest will apparently continue to grow into onions.
So, this afternoon I am going to dig up one radish plant and one spring onion plant! This is going to be a momentous occasion and I will definitely take lots of pictures. Stay tuned!!