Monday, October 24, 2011

The Light at the Center of the Tunnel

It is so wonderful to be greeted with this room of glowing green every morning when I open up the high tunnel.  Here  it is, just 42 days after planting the seeds.
In the southwest bed I have two rows each of bull's blood beets and golden beets.  This is one of two beds I have not  yet completed thinning, weeding and mulching. Also, it is next to the side of the greenhouse that I roll up on warm days and yesterday a hen discovered her way in and helped herself to a bunch of the red beet greens.  Note: erect fencing before opening up the greenhouse again!
A bed each of the biondi di lyon chard and the rainbow chard are looking great!  I mulched between the rows with black mulch that touted its ability to conserve 30% more water and because I theorized perhaps the black color would absorb more heat during the day, keeping the plants warmer at night.
We are  now liberally harvesting spinach -- I hope there is still some for the winter Farmers Market which begins in 2 two weekends!
Scallions and baby leeks, on the other hand, still have a long way to go.
Reading up on the broccoli raab this morning, I think it may be time to start harvesting the greens.  Don't want them to get too big and become bitter.
The Asian greens also look nearly ready to harvest to me, but it is my first time growing  broccoli raab, Asian greens,  or claytonia, so I am a bit unsure when/what to do with them.
Carrots are still tiny.
Healthy-looking Italian parsley
and curly parsley, nestled up to the pansies.
I am having wonderful beginner's luck with this high tunnel.


9 comments:

Kent and Megan said...

Susan,
I love how neat and tidy this garden is because of the tunnel and your mulching! Where did you get the black mulch? I want to use that in my beds because it looks like dirt but without the weeds!!!

Becky said...

Wow! What an amazing winter garden! It must feel amazing to be inside the warm tunnel on a chilly day. Do you think you'll be able to garden into the coldest part of winter or will it eventually get too cold in the tunnel?

Susan said...

Hi Megan- from Home Depot. I have seen it other places but that is the only place I found with any mulch left for sale this time of year. I also like how the green looks so vibrant on the black and that it looks like rich garden loam. I put down several layers of wet newspaper under the mulch to help block weeds.

Susan said...

Hi Becky -The high tunnel has no heat, but I will add row covers when it gets colder. That effectively increases temp by 4 degrees. The plant varieties were all chosen for cold season growing (as recommended by Eliot Coleman.) I intend to grow until mid-December, then take a break and get an early start on spring planting. I am thinking about planting my tomatoes in the high tunnel next spring.

The Luddite said...

kudos - superb!

Coleman is such a great resource.

Rosebud said...

That is incredible! We planted spinach... i believe it was 2 months ago now, and they're still babies! You must have quite the green thumb. I also love how tidy everything looks. It is simply amazing.

Bee Girl said...

Absolutely gorgeous and extremely inspiring! I long to, one day, grow the volume of veggies you do and to do it some beautifully! Cheers!

gz said...

A lovely sight!

katiegirl said...

It must be nice to see everything green and growing in the hi tunnel when everything is dying outside!