I just went to the store to buy seeds yesterday. We are in the oven-like doldrums of August here in Arkansas. Nothing in my garden is doing well producing edible items except for the basil and the okra. We get an occasional japaneese eggplant, and some tiny ancho peppers, but that is about it. Tonight I made dinner: eggplant with a little chopped kale and chard, topped with copious amounts of pesto. I served this concoction on a bed of quiona, a nutty-flavored grain from South America.
After my Catskills vacation, I miss lettuce! I miss squash! I miss spinach! I miss tomatoes. Any lettuce or spinach I plant from seed outside doesn’t even come up in the baked 100F+ heat- indexed afternoons.
So I went ahead and did it. I bought seeds. The seed package says it takes 55 days for the chineese cabbage to be ready. That puts the harvest date at October 12. Weather.com says the average high/low for our location is 72F/52F…PERFECT FOR CABBAGE. I’m going to gamble, so I planted some yellow squash indoors also. Keep in mind that our kale lasted the entire winter last year to thrive in March.
I’ve also got a number of first-year asparagus plantings in. I waited way too long to get them into the ground, but they are doing better now. My established asparagus patch has become so thick, it blocks out the sun for my carrots and an eggplant.
Our tomatoes are nothing but a tangled overgrowth of overgrowth with the occasional cherry tomato trying to turn red in the heat.
But now, my triumph: I attended the Faulkner County Seed Swap in April. There were two heirloom types of okra there. I planted both to find one extra wide, and another extra long. The extra-wide type has grown to be 6 feet tall, and it is still going. The extra-long type really attracts ants. Both produce fruit that is tender at a large size, unlike the usual Clemson Spineless that I plant. However, I am really starting to get sick of eating okra. This week I gave in and purchased red peppers and spinach from the store.
Sometimes I think I should only plant basil and a couple of beefsteak tomato plants. If only I could plant mozzarella plants.