I suppose this shouldn’t surprise me, but…the stuff in the greenhouse is growing.
This is a really dumb revelation, of course. Duh: things in the greenhouse are supposed to grow, El. You see, though, I approached the greenhouse contents as things in a gigantic refrigerator. Mentally, of course, we all approach our refrigerators as a place of biological limbo, a place of suspended animation. I had gotten so used to seeing everything in there as these wee little precious plants which must be left alone, barely harvested.
I know what is to blame for the suspension of my normal gardening common sense. From all the winter gardening books I had read, I simply had been led to believe that I should NOT expect anything during winter. It’s too cold, and there’s just not enough light to stimulate growth. Just get the seedlings up and growing to a modest height by the end of October, and then sit and wait until February when they’ll start growing again, and you can harvest them in earnest. I didn’t expect a flush of growth in January! (Joy!) What this means, of course, is I can up my harvests from one large salad a week to two, or maybe three. One fresh veggie for dinner to two.
Nirvana for me is a couple of our eggs, poached, atop a bed of our salad greens. Add an apple from our trees and some local wine, and, well. Yum.
And, well, yum!
All I have to harvest right now is a tree full of navel oranges. Not very juicy; not very sweet. I have plans.
Glad your hoophouse is amazing you.
I realized this same issue in the last week or so. I’ve read over and over and over (because I am an obsessive winter-growing reader) that growth stops when the days are short and doesn’t start again until early to mid February. That has not been the case here. I’m glad you’ve brought this up here. It’s time to correct what we were told so many times.
CC: OH how the mind reels: a personal stash of citrus!! Mmm. MMMarmalade? Candied peels? And of course something simple like a granita?? (Hey: apples show up in, like, every other dinner in some form or another in this house; I figure you’ll figure out how to do the same…)
Robin. Thank you. Seriously, I thought it was just me. But, well, I have been peeking under the reemay when I do my furtive pickings for salad, and, well, the seedlings are getting bigger.) But I would love to learn more about your greenhouses, so I will stay tuned!
Lucky girl! I’m drooling. Better than what the NRDC has listed as our 1 local food source…….Christmas trees.
Angie: better get the hubby thinking about building you a small greenhouse this year!! You (and the kids) would just love it.
I love having a new perspective of things I took for granted. I think your greenhouse is a firm answer to all those people who say, “I’m in (insert cold city here) so how could I possibly get fresh local veggies?! Well, you’ve got the right idea…grow your own! Even in January, you can have two fresh salads a week. Great job, El!
Wow, that’s a nice haul. What varieties of lettuce are you growing? I’m new to growing lettuce and I am looking at trying some new varieties.
Hi Kristi: I grow mostly cold-hardy heirloom lettuces (most of them have “Winter” in their names so I figure I can’t go wrong) but am actually having a bit of luck with other really thin-leaved varieties, too, like Grand Rapids and a couple of oak leaves. Lettuce in general (spinach too) just loves cold weather, especially in the greenhouse. So I suppose I could try to grow all my lettuce in there and it would be happy…hope that helps?