12 May 2015

The seasonal chore...

...is more than halfway done. We'll have two more warm sunny days before the rain comes back, according to weather forecasts. I'll finish the tilling today and tomorrow morning I'll need to go out and run errands. Getting the garden ready one more time is a huge milestone in this life we lead here in the Loire Valley.

Back in 2004, we tried to prepare our first vegetable garden using just shovels, hoes, and elbow grease. We realized then that we would never be able to get it done by brute force. We went out and bought a rototiller that spring. It's given us good service for 12 seasons now. Yesterday, I tilled around the western, northern, and eastern edges of the newly enlarged garden plot.

Walt spent a lot of time repotting seedlings yesterday, so that they'll grow a little bigger before we set them out in the garden. I bet we have four dozen tomato plants at this point! Oh well, you can never have too many tomatoes in summertime. Or in the freezer for wintertime enjoyment.

I'm tilling around a couple of rogue rhubarb plants that came up after Walt dug up, divided, and transplanted all the others to a make a new rhubarb patch. He harvested rhubarb from these two stray plants yesterday by cutting all the biggest stems and leaves. He'll move them later this year to the new patch.

Last week, I harvested Swiss chard. I pulled out the plants, trimmed and cleaned the leaves and ribs, and cooked them in duck fat, white wine, and seasonings. I ended up with three liters — six one-pint containers — of cooked chard. Four of them went into the freezer, and two of them went into us over the past week.


  1. "He'll move them later this year to the new patch."....
    but this time....
    making sure ALL the bits of root are out!!
    I've recently noticed that there is the tiniest rhubarb plant in our verger...
    the rest of it is in pots... it was too lush for them there... too much competition.
    I'll not try rescuing it. If it survives it will get fed!
    The rhubarb in the three new "Rhubarb Triangles" is coming on a treat, tho'....
    fresh stony ground, bits of iron [old nails, rusty bolts, etc.] and NO competition.
    Now all I need is to follow a police horse with a bucket and spade...
    failing that a bag of fumier.

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  3. Meant to say: We could use one of those at our place.


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