Growing in the Twin Cities with Backyard Harvest

Building a sustainable (and delicious) urban food system – one yard at a time

Transition Weeks July 24, 2009

Filed under: Lisa's Blog: Backyard Harvest Garden-owner — Lisa @ 12:36 pm

Harvest July 23rd, 2009

[[photo by: WontonBrutality]]


We’ve been clearly transitioning from spring to summer in the garden. The peas have given their last and have been pulled. The tomatoes are starting to get big and should soon go all beautifully red. Our weekly harvests that were heavy on chard, kale, and spicy lettuces are starting to have green beans and adorable squashes. It’s nice to see the segues of the seasons in your own backyard, even these kind of half season changes we’ve been having.

Before the garden was all established and huge, Stefan stopped by one afternoon to ask us about what we liked, what we didn’t, and see if there was anything that absolutely shouldn’t be in there. A big part of why the husband and I wanted to do this (and did a CSA last year) was for the experiment – really find out what we like and what we don’t, how to prepare the things that we thought we didn’t enjoy, and learn more about the veggies we knew we were gaga about. So, when the peas got pulled up earlier this month, Stefan was nice enough to replant the area with more beans. We told him “there are never enough beans,” and I don’t think that we were lying.

Used to be sprouts

[[photo by: WontonBrutality]]

But on the scale of things that we’ve tried and just couldn’t figure out, were these guys in the picture above. They were sold, planted, and labeled as brussel sprouts, but as the summer has gone on, it’s clear that they were not. But we’re always game for an experiment! They seemed to be some sort of Chinese cabbage-y kind of thing and stir frying seemed to be a good option. Weirdly, when they’re cut, they smell exactly like broccoli, but when cooked are very bitter and pretty… sturdy. If we get more, I think we’ll braise them like collard greens and see how they are that way. It’s great fun to have new things to play with in the kitchen, though, so here’s a cheer for happy accidents!

Continuing the theme of transitions, there are tons of later summer crops that are starting to look like they’ll be ready soon-ish. The tomatoes are getting there without a doubt, our cucumbers are plumping up (even though a squirrel got our first one, it’s the only critter loss of the season so far), and the broccolis and cauliflowers are forming the bud bunches on top that will so delicious roasted on the grill. The first round of beans are producing like mad, the pole beans will be ready after that, and our second batch of bush beans are looking good to go after the pole guys are done.


– Lisa in Kingfield

Tomatoes in Queue Broccoli Forthcoming

[[photos by: WontonBrutality]]

The full photo collection for this project is over on Flickr.


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