Dead nettle has flowered here as early as 1/21 (2011) to as late as 3/18 (2003). Its average is more like 3/1. Three weeks earlier than average, but still not the earliest ever.
Last week I wrote about garlic scallions, in a bit of a hurry. We usually harvest these starting March 1st, but this year we started at the end of January, as the plants had grown tall enough. Another indicator of spring being warmer than usual, so far.
Here’s more about growing this tasty bonus vegetable
- A very tasty and visually attractive crop during the Hungry Gap, the spring period before any new crops are ready for harvest, when our palates are getting tired of leafy greens and stored roots.
- Supply garlic taste at a time when supplies of bulb garlic may have run out.
How to grow garlic scallions:
- Set aside the smallest cloves when planting your main garlic crop
- Find a small space which will be easy to get to in early spring (late winter), and make furrows a couple of inches deep as you would for planting regular garlic cloves.
- Plant the tiny cloves close together in close-set furrows, dropping them in almost shoulder to shoulder, just as they fall. Close the furrow and mulch over the top with spoiled hay or straw.
Harvesting garlic scallions:
- We harvest garlic scallions from early March, once they reach about 7-8″ (18-20 cm) tall,
- They last till May, unless we need to use the space.
- Loosen the plants with a fork rather than just pulling
- Trim the roots, rinse, bundle, set in a small bucket with a little water
- Scallions can be sold in small bunches of 3-6 depending on size
Alternative harvest method:
- Rather than digging up the plants, cut the greens at 10″ (25 cm) tall, and bunch them, allowing cuts to be made every two or three weeks. Greens wilt quicker than scallions, and you’ll have to wait till later to start harvesting them.
We’re about to sow our first carrot bed, which will be our first outdoor sowing of the year. We are preparing beds to transplant spinach, cabbage, kale and collards. We belatedly noticed that our tiller tines are worn down! Oh, if only we had been on top of this and put new ones during the winter, we’d be having an easier time of turning under the cover crops and weeds this week!