|daffodils in the front yard|
It was too good of a day today to pass up the chance to plant the veggie garden. Yesterday was cold and grey and still had some snowflakes falling. I had to go to the north shore of lake Mille Lacs yesterday morning, which normally would be a fun thing to do, but was completely miserable in the wind and cold. The ice was off of the lake- but just barely. Ice was still piled up in big surreal iceberg like chunks on the western side of the lake, and icicles were dripping on the roofs of buildings.
All this on the 2nd of May. But today the sun came out and the temperature was 60 or maybe 60-ish and of course I was stuck in the office all day in front of a computer. So when it was time to take the kids to ECFE- I let Gita do it, and I stayed out in the backyard instead.
I had a lot of seeds to plant and about an hour and a half to do it, so it wasn't a leisurely as I would have liked. I really look forward to planting the garden, but in the last few years- when it's time to plant, there's always a million other things to do, and it ends up being rushed and feeling like more of an annoyance than a pleasure. I never feel like I have the time to really plan it out right- say nothing about waiting for the right moon phase.
So I raked out the already spaded bed and hoed in rows for all of our cold weather crops. I planted peas, lacinato kale, spinach, mustard greens, fava beans, radishes, carrots and broccoli as well as some warmer weather crops- zucchini and cilantro, since they usually seem to be pretty indestructible, and it is supposed to be May after all.
|a new row of fava beans/|
In Minnesota, they're almost ridiculously easy to grow. They like cool weather, and in 2009 we had two crops from the same plants since the entire summer was fairly cool. Last year's hot summer gave us a bumper crop of favas early on, then nothing after mid-July. I'm guessing this year will be another all-summer fava year.
The great thing about them, beside the ease of growing them and the flavor is the fact that they're also nitrogen fixers, like peas and other beans. Apparently enough so that they are used in some places as a green manure, like soybeans or alfalfa or buckwheat. Could it get any better- they taste good, grow well and improve your soil in the process?
|Evans cherry waiting to bloom|
I apologize for the low quality of the close-up photos by the way. My camera doesn't seem to have a setting for taking close ups. Every camera I've had before has had a setting for it, but not this one. It's a great little camera otherwise. Maybe someone has a tip. It's a Canon Powershot SX120. If you have a similar model, let me know if you've found a way to take decent plant photos.