Sometimes it seems that here in Abilene we jump from winter to summer, making it hard to grow cool-weather vegetables. So, even though we may still have freezes, go ahead and plant those things that need cooler temperatures.
This year I am again gardening with friends; we share both the labor and the rewards! Here’s what we planted this week:
Early Wonder beets– soak beet seeds in water -24 hours to aid germination, then plant 2” apart and ½ “ deep. Enjoy both the tops and the bulb.
Sugar Snap Peas and Golden India Edible Pod peas– plant against a fence or trellis, 2” apart and 1 ½ “ deep. Eat raw or use in stir-fries.
Radishes– plant a short section once a week, as they mature in just 21 days and don’t hold very well. Plant 1” apart and ½ “deep.
Carrots– we planted a rainbow mix of red, purple, orange, yellow, and white. Plant ¼ – ½ “deep and thin to 2” apart when 2” tall.
Baby Leaf Lettuce blend– We blocked out a 3’ by 5’ area and broadcast these seeds, then covered them with ¼ “ of soil. Harvest entire plants, or cut outer leaves and leave the smaller leaves to grow.
Black-seeded Simpson lettuce– this is fairly heat-tolerant , thus good for our climate. Plant ¼” deep, 1-2” apart. You can thin by harvesting entire young plants, then leave the others to mature.
Giant spinach– plant ½” deep, 2” apart, and thin later to 6” apart.
Swiss Chard– We planted 4” pots of Rainbow Lights. This is very ornamental, as well as being great-tasting raw or in soups and stir-fries.
Giant Kale– we planted 4” pots to mark ends of rows. Try kale chips made by washing and drying kale leaves, then brush with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, and bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes.
Other veggies you can plant now include broccoli, cabbage, and oriental greens such as pak choy.
Article by Fran “Franma” Hilbert