It is getting warmer in Texas. In the beginning of the week it still felt like Winter. By the end it will feel like late Spring/early Summer. But I still have to keep a close eye to the temperatures, since we still get 30s and 40s (-1ºC to +9ºC) some nights. During the day it is wonderful to get everything ready for the Spring garden.
Today, I decided to plant my tomatoes a little bit deeper. Their roots are not as established, yet. I still could dig around the roots and drop them with some Epsom salt lower into the soil. The peppers will bloom soon. I found some good size buds on them. And the rest, which were planted earlier is doing very well in the raised beds. Our plants are growing. I finally planted the cauliflower and kohlrabi in one of the beds. Since I lost them to a freeze last December, I was very hesitant until now. When it gets too cool, I have to cover them. We easily could get another cold snap here in North Texas in mid-April. The magic temperature number is 55ºF (13ºC) for the tomatoes. When the ‘maters get covered, the cauliflowers, kohlrabi and peppers will get covered as well.
Onions and Bell Peppers
Cauliflowers and other goodies in our raised bed
Dill, we always use for salad dressings
Rainbow Swiss Chard
Cauliflower plant viewed from above
Finally, I made it over to The Colony Community Garden. If it is not sickness in our house, it is the rain that kept me away for a few weeks.About three weeks ago, I cut off the broccoli heads. But I left the rest in my raised bed. When I came back, I found more broccoli grown to my surprise (I did that with the kale all year, and it worked as well). I guess, the rain and the cooler weather was the perfect “chemistry” for the broccoli to keep giving. Probably by next week, I can cut some more. The red cabbages formed tight balls. Now, they need to grow. Katie’s brussels sprouts get bigger and are almost ready for the harvest. Christi was sowing some root vegetables in Winter. In a few weeks, there is a good chance we can pull some radishes. The Church Garden is looking good, too. Onions, savoy cabbages, spinach and other Winter goodies are doing very well in their beds. I also had a big smile, when I saw the Dianthus are coming back blooming in my bed. They like the warm days and cool nights. Everything looks so good. But we all can’t wait for warmer weather. We want to get the tomatoes, peppers, beans, etc. in the soil and grow some good vegetables for the local food pantry.
I put a Romaine lettuce in my bed to test, if it will survive the cooler nights. As we can see, it did.
I planted extra kale in my raised bed a few weeks, ago. There is never enough kale.
Katie’s Brussels Sprouts
Christi was sowing some radishes. Hmm, delicious!
A few weeks back, I cut the broccoli heads off. Today, I came back to more broccoli. Isn’t this awesome?
I was so excited to see the Dianthus bloom in my raised bed.
The red cabbages became very tight over the last few weeks. Now, grow, grow, grow!!!
There is some fresh spinach growing in the church garden.
Beautiful onions in the church garden
Savoy Cabbage in the church garden
This year, my plans are: to get more herbs in the beds; I would like to concentrate only on a few vegetables, instead of many. And then rotate the crop. I hope to get a higher yield this way. I’ll keep you updated. 🙂 In the meantime:
🐞🌷Happy Gardening, y’all! 🌷🐞
The last couple of days, I was very busy in the garden. I planted tomatoes, peppers, brussels sprouts, chard, snow peas and herbs. Despite it might be a little early for the tomatoes and peppers, I put them in the ground anyway. Tomorrow, I have to put up a cold frame. Because we supposed to have a few nights with temperatures in the mid 30s (3ºC). But I didn’t want to wait too much longer, and we might have a good chance that we get some vegetables before the heat comes into North Texas, again.
Rainbow Swiss Chard
Broccoli from the Autumn season
I seem to have more success with my garlic than in previous years.
In the meantime, we enjoy the blooms inside the greenhouse. It always feels good to see some color, even during the cooler months of Winter. The Narcissus are all in bloom; the Gazania blossom looks so beautiful; the Sweet Williams are coming back; and the Tulips will start blooming any day, now.
The Sweet Williams have a come back.
Last month, I put some asparagus roots in a crate full of soil. I did this a few years back, and I had some great asparagus in the second and third year. Asparagus grows very thin in the first year. It’s edible, but I usually let it grow into fern. My tomatoes love them as companions. And so do the peppers and the basil. But I have to keep the asparagus in a crate, because it is very invasive. If I had enough room, I wouldn’t mind growing asparagus in a raised bed. But it will take over, if not watched carefully. Hmmm, I can see fresh asparagus recipes in the future. 😉
First Year-Asparagus is very thin. It will be much thicker the following years.
Last Sunday, I ordered more seeds from Botanical Interests. Since they have free shipping on all their orders throughout the months of February, I had to use this opportunity to also get some seeds I usually can’t get in my local nursery. Today, the package arrived. When I opened it, I could tell it was put together with Love. The order was complete. And it had some extras: a Mesclun salad seed package, a seed guide, and a sticker. Now, I’m excited and can barely wait until the weather becomes warmer and I can work in the garden again.
The seeds have arrived, today.
It was packaged with Love.
More seeds to sow this year. ❤
With this crazy roller coaster weather we experience in North Texas, gardening can become quite a challenge. Last Autumn I planted some Winter cabbages. And the broccoli was the only plant that survived. In January, I started all over again. But I learned my lesson, and planted the vegetables in big pots. They spend the cooler days and nights inside the greenhouse. And on the warmer day, I can open the windows. The onions and the garlic do well in the raised beds. They don’t seem to mind that it is 70ºF (22ºC) one day, and 14ºF (-10ºC) on another day. Once the vegetables can be harvested, a portion will go to the food pantry as well.
Texas Yellow Onion
Last week, I put the end piece of a celery stalk in a bowl of water to force new growth. I did this with green onions and romaine lettuces before, and could plant them in the soil for years to come. But for some reason, I had no luck with celery. It always began to rot in the water or in the soil. Well, I don’t give up so easy when it comes to plants anyway. So, here is my “gazillionth” attempt to grow celery from celery, again. I’ll keep you updated. It either will grow, and I’ll post more pics, or it will die and I’ll let you know. Wish me luck. 😉
Another attempt to grow new celery from an old celery bulb.
Update on February 10, 2018:
The last few weeks, the stems and leaves of the celery grew much longer. I’m still hesitant to put it in soil. It has some roots. But I’m afraid, it will rot in the dirt. Maybe I let it mature a little longer and wait until it becomes warmer outside, before I make that decision.
The stems and leaves of the celery grew quite a bit over the last few weeks.