Green explosion

Pile o’ lettuceThere was a point earlier in the season when I thought I would never end up with anything resembling a reasonable mesclun harvest. All the leaves were tiny, and not like baby-lettuce tiny, but just stunted and useless. “I can’t cut that,” I thought, looking sullenly at my two rows of mesclun and three rows of teeny weeny spinach. “Cutting it would kill it.”

Considering that my greens experiment last Fall really, either, I had resigned myself to giving up on salad days.

But in the past couple of weeks, the salad has exploded. I have lettuce coming out the wazoo, people. Out. The. Wazoo.

But I had been doing this thing where I was just cutting whatever I needed for the day. You know, I was really thinking all about my needs, not the garden’s. It hadn’t occurred to me to harvest what was ready, rather than what I wanted to use for, you know, my little solo salads.

I was over at Dirt Sun Rain Redux today, though, perusing Steven’s post about harvesting his own abundant greens, and it occurred to me that, in fact, I do live in a house that comes with its own refrigeration services, and there was no reason for me not to just go ahead and cut lettuce and spinach willy-nilly. The garden, after all, will make more.

So, when I got home from work, that’s what I did. I crouched down next to the leaves, cutting and cutting and cutting until I had squished as much into the container I’d taken out there as I could. The bed looks happier now – less overgrown, more spacious – and I suspect I’ve just gotten myself a golden ticket to even better, newer greens.


8 Responses to “Green explosion”

  1. 1 Lydia June 8, 2007 at 5:40 am

    Doesn’t it always seem like tough love to cut down the garden when you don’t want to eat what you’re cutting? I find that with my herb garden, too — my chives have blossomed and desperately need to be cut — and yet, I could feed my entire town with what I will cut and return to the compost pile! Of course, if I don’t cut, the chives will not thrive. My new mantra….remember the refrigerator!

  2. 2 steven June 8, 2007 at 7:37 am

    Not only do we have refrigerators, we have freezers for the spinach and we have friends and fambly that would love a bag of mixed greens.

    The alternative is to take the Italian approach to produce and eat whatever is in season, in every possible way it can be prepared until you’re sick of it and something new is ready in the garden.

  3. 3 Kalyn June 8, 2007 at 8:19 am

    Lucky you. I am consistently too lazy to get the seeds in early enough to grow lettuce. It gets too hot too soon in Utah! (That was not a complaint, I love the hot weather.)

  4. 4 inadvertentgardener June 8, 2007 at 8:41 am

    Lydia, it definitely is. I keep reminding myself that now that I’m composting, if I can’t eat all the lettuce, it really is OK, but still…it’s hard for me to get used to.

    Steven, ah, yes…I could freeze some spinach. I forgot about that… But I’m also hugely in favor of the Italian approach.

    Kalyn, I’m a big fan of the hot weather, too. I totally get that!

  5. 5 steven June 8, 2007 at 5:21 pm

    OMG, my spinach is totally bolting, talk about your green explosions.

  6. 6 cole June 8, 2007 at 7:32 pm

    Mmmm….lettuce from your garden. SOunds like a grand idea. One I had myself and planted some for squirrels and bunnies and some for us. They varmits have eaten all of my seeds and sprouts for us and the lettuces I planted , under the GIANT pine tree (see drips of sap all over the leaves…ick) is doing just great!

    Sigh. I am sticking to flowers from now on. I did manage to salvage a couple of seedings of basil and parsley..I brough them inside to my kitchen window for some cliched herb growing. We will see.


  7. 7 inadvertentgardener June 8, 2007 at 11:05 pm

    Steven, I see blanching in your future…

    Cole, it’s a great idea, but for this explosion part. But still…feeding the varmints isn’t a bad idea either. I hope those herbs do well on your windowsill!

  1. 1 Seeded Trackback on June 8, 2007 at 8:32 am

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