May 28, 2012

First big harvest/hops vines pass 12 feet/naps up top reported

The first large, on-contract harvest for Parts and Labour happened on the 23rd of May.  The kitchen received 5 dozen radish, 4 grocery bags full of baby greens, two large bunches of chives and their flowers, a bouquet of lovage the size of a soccer ball (with more up top if they go through it) and two bunches of thyme.  Parts chef Matty has been selling the radishes as an appetizer with whipped salted butter and chive flowers, and the restaurant was sold out of it by mid-evening Saturday.   On Sunday I sent the kitchen an additional 30 french breakfast radishes to keep the opening weekend garden menu consistent, and those spicy jerks (the radishes) were almost too big to hang out in the soil another week anyway (win win!).  Super pleased to see the 6 nasturtiums in buckets are chubby enough to handle giving up 40 leaves for the vegetarian night at Charlie's Burgers.  Yeah!

May 18, 2012

First Harvest!

From top to bottom, two bags of chives, lovage, two chickweeds, thyme, and stinging nettle.   There is also a giant harvest of the Mojito mint.  Next week the salads will start and as usual, I am frustrated and amazed by how often plants ignore the timelines predicted on the seed packages and do their own thing.   
Beyond the natural wild-cards,  I would also like to figure out how to prevent pigeon gangs from hanging out up top, and why they are so into the anise hyssop?!   Probably connected to some kind of delicious bug that likes the plant too.

May 15 2012

Hops already 10 feet high.  Psychedelic trellis courtesy of Patti, who bakes the bread you eat at Woodlot. 

Dear identity thieves, get bent.

 I always have piles of bills, and since it is always recommended that one obliterates these things,  lest some no-goodnik finds it in the trash and uses the information within to steal my identity, I have decided to incorporate the paper into my gardening routine.

The bucket you see is an eighteen liter pail that I had crammed with bills and bank statements and random junk from the government.  I soak the entire mess in water until it becomes an unrecognizable pulp and then throw it into the compost pile where it will become a source of carbon for the piles digestive process.  The secondary benefit of this slurry is that it adds extra moisture to our unwrapped pile that I don't want to fully dry out - and in the roofs high heat, high wind microclimate that is pretty likely without additional water.

Transplants went in, that chickweed came out.

Transplants are a good way to get a head start on the growing season. Some of these babies grew up at Urban Harvest and some of them in my living room under full spectrum fluorescent lights. Two inches taller than the seeded lettuce up-top, they will speed up our production timeline.  The plant in the back going nuts is chickweed (again!) I though about tearing it out, but instead I'm going to aggressively haircut the thing, fertilize it, and hope the undergrowth exposed by said shearing will rise up chubby and available for salads.