It’s been a month since our year-end harvest and, with a run of subzero days, we didn’t know what to expect when we went to check on the garden beds. We pulled back the row covers with trepidation, what rotten mess would we find? Not all of the winter lettuce mix made it. Though, good old escarole, we can count on you!
We’d left nubs of Fordhook chard in the ground and they’re proving their hardiness, not only surviving but beginning to put out new growth.
The most unexpected find was the pan di zucchero. While the puntarelle succumbed to the cold, the two heads of pan di zucchero soldiered on.
The second head had developed tall enough to be harvested, our sole one for the day. It will have place of honor in a radicchio, egg and grana padano soup, a new favorite.
The good, the bad, and the wilty: pan di zucchero, puntarelle, fun jen, and arugula.
Cold-tolerant arugula, winter lettuce mix, kales and chard. The plants keep in kind of suspended animation and, once the days reach a certain length, should resume growing.
There was one last tatsoi huddling under a double layer of row cover. The ground was frozen, and the plant appeared desiccated and frost-burned.
In the flurry of cleaning the bed out, it inadvertently ended up in the compost. Poor tatsoi, we would have liked to have brought it inside and see if it revived enough to be edible.
We’d brought four of the catalogna chicory inside back in December, two each of the Brindisina and the broader-leaved Galantina. Amber suggested forcing them, and we treated them as we would paperwhites. They spent several weeks in a pail of water placed in the garage, after which we brought them inside and kept them in a light and cool room.
The plants are less than robust, next time we’d keep them potted. Still, two of the puntarelle are sending out tips. Unfortunately, we neglected to mark them and don’t know which variety is which — bad gardener! We’ll now must wait until spring to see if the outside ones recover and do the same.