2 acre farm: Wintered Over

2 acre farm

The experiences, trials, and lives on a small farm in rural Illinois.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Wintered Over

Last fall I plated some spinach and garlic for the following season. The spinach was planted in late August and the garlic in October. After I planted the spinach I was able to harvest it a bit last year but my main goal was being able to harvest it early this spring. The garlic was planted strictly to get large bulbs at harvest this summer.

The spinach unfortunately was not well taken care of because I forgot to tuck it in with mulch last year. I guess this was probably because I was too busy harvesting it and lost my focus. Since I did not mulch it in it is a wonder any of it survived but some did. The problem is that it came back weedy and spotty. There are a few spots where there are gaps in the row several feet wide and as the picture shows there are plenty of weeds, especially dandelions. I guess the lesson here is to weed and mulch the fall spinach this year and hope for better success next spring. At least though I got to see that spinach is quite hardy considering we had a pretty cold winter this year. The variety is the old standard 'Bloomsdale' which is the only spinach I plant. I think next year or for this years fall planting I may try some different varieties along side 'Bloomsdale' just for kicks.

The garlic on the other hand was well tended to. Immediately after planting it was mulched with about six to eight inches of shredded leaves. Despite all the leaf cover it kept growing all winter even with the ground froze solid. About a week ago I pulled the leaves off of it and left them to rot in the path. After doing this the garlic greened up and began growing almost over night. I can't wait to harvest this garlic. The variety it 'music' which seems to be a pretty popular and hardy hard neck variety. Here is the post from last fall when I planted the garlic, Finally Planted The Garlic .

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Blogger debsgarden said...

I always think about planting spinach but never have. It's one of my favorite veggies. Problem is, I'm so pooped from gardening by fall, the last thing I want to do is tend a vegetable garden through the winter. So I end up buying spinach. But really, I'm going to do better this year!

March 20, 2010 at 11:54 PM  
Blogger Nathan (2af) said...

You can spring plant spinach as well with great success. Fall plantings are just suppose to get you an earlier picking. I actually direct sowed another row about a week ago.

March 22, 2010 at 11:11 PM  

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