Harvest Monday: Strawberries and More

Last week was definitely the week where the strawberry shined. We harvested 8.4 pounds of them, fully half our total harvest for the week. In addition to eating some every day, we started freezing them for later use. They are great in breakfast smoothies, alone or mixed with other fruits. We freeze them much like we do our blueberries, without sugar. We spread them out in a single layer on a cookie sheet to freeze, then put them in an airtight container after they are frozen.

ripe strawberries

We’re also still getting lettuce to eat, though the pace has slowed down. These two below (Oakleaf and Red Multy) found their way into salads.

Oakleaf and Red Multy lettuces

The Red Multy is a new one for us, and is a frilly red cousin to the green Multy we’ve been growing. It’s pretty enough, but I’m not really sure if it’s an improvement over other red lettuce we grow. Time will tell, I guess.

Red Multy leaf

I also harvested the first head of radicchio. This one is Red Preco, and it might have gotten a little bigger but I was ready for a taste of spring radicchio. It looks a little funny on that black background but I was in a hurry to eat and didn’t feel like changing the setup in the photo tent!

radicchio Red Preco

We harvested 1.4 pounds of asparagus, and this was the last of the asparagus for this year. The spear size fell off dramatically last week, and since it was our seventh week of harvesting on a relatively new bed we decided to call it quits. We got a total of 14.3 pounds, a big improvement over the 10 pounds we got last year. I’m still struggling with how to value some of our harvest veggies monetarily, but I will say I saw organic asparagus at Whole Foods this week going for $3.99 a pound.

Using that figure, we grew $57 worth of organic asparagus this year, and $40 worth last year. That more than covers the $60 that I paid for the crowns. The asparagus beds should keep on producing for at least 15-20 years, if not longer. For anyone who likes asparagus and has the room to grow it, in my opinion the initial investment is well worth it in the long run, much like planting a fruit tree.

Packman broccoli

We also harvested more broccoli, endive, scallions and kohlrabi, plus some tatsoi and mizuna. Total harvest for the week was 16.4 pounds. For more gardener’s harvests, visit Daphne’s Dandelions and see what’s growing!

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20 Responses to Harvest Monday: Strawberries and More

  1. Thomas says:

    Nice strawberry harvest! Unfortunately, I don’t think I’ll be getting many this year.

  2. Daphne says:

    That is a lot of asparagus. I want to add asparagus next year. I’m contemplating how much to put in.

    • Villager says:

      14 pounds sounds like a lot, but the two of us had no trouble eating it all. We enjoy it while we can!

  3. Ali says:

    Everything looks great, especially the strawberries, my favorite. YUM!

  4. Oooooo strawberries. I only have green fruits around here. Those look wonderful. I have a couple almost radicchio heads and that boccoli looks good enough to eat 😉

  5. Momma_S says:

    Your pictures are always beautiful, and now we know your secret–a photo tent. HA!

    That’s an amazing looking raddichio. It looks like it could almost come to life and walk off the set! LOL

    • Villager says:

      Fortunately it stayed put long enough we had some for lunch today! The photo tent is nice for photos. I never seem to have enough light in the kitchen, and often the outside light is pretty harsh.

  6. Angela says:

    That radicchio looks very dramatic on it’s black background. Maybe you have yet a better idea for it, but this is a good one.

    Valuing your veggies is a very tricky thing. How can you compare them with the grocery store’s? There are a lot of hidden costs and rewards in both, so I find it impossible. How do you account for the environmental costs of the grocery store veggies vs. you own, your time and labor, as a grower and as a shopper, and the myriad physical, spiritual, intellectual and health rewards of a home garden. I know you didn’t mean your remark in this big picture way, but I can’t bring myself to put a price to my veggies. As soon as I start thinking in the value of my veggies I just get lost thinking about life and the world and I loose count.

    • Villager says:

      It is a complex topic, for sure. I’ve been trying to collect my thoughts for a post on it, but I’m not ready yet. Maybe I just need to go with what I’ve got so far.

      It’s safe to say I don’t grow food just to save money, though that’s a nice by product. I’ve been growing fruits and vegetables for most of my adult life, and for a variety of reasons. I do like to know my food personally. I never have to wonder where it came from, and what’s been sprayed on it (usually nothing). But I think I really enjoy gardening because I’ve never lost the childlike wonder that comes from starting something from seed, or slip, or cutting, and watching it grow up and get big. I get the idea that’s true for a lot of us!

  7. Oh, strawberries are absolutely my favorite fruit. Sadly, I haven’t grown any, so I take advantage of any sales I can find for strawberries and then freeze them as often as I can 🙂

  8. What a wonderful strawberry harvest! That’s quite a lot of fruit! Are you growing just one variety, or a mix?

    • Villager says:

      We’ve got two varieties producing now, Jewel and Tribute. I’ve got some Seascape just now coming on.

  9. Jane says:

    Amazing harvest! The strawberries and lettuce are so colorful! The radicchio is perfect – it’s one of my favorite greens but I they don’t form a head in my climate!

  10. Kelly says:

    That radicchio is gorgeous! Congrats on all the asparagus, it sounds like you are treating it right.

  11. Emily says:

    Beautiful harvest. I’m jealous of the strawberries, we have another month at least to wait and I don’t have any in my own garden yet.

  12. johanna says:

    Strawberries and Broccoli – Beautiful

  13. Great post. I haven’t had the time or inclination to weigh our harvests. I tend to work in terms of volume. So far we have been eating all the strawberries we care to (both in breakfast smoothies and crushed with sugar and served with icecream — mmmm) and I have almost a whole gallon frozen. We have over a gallon of asparagus frozen this year, and we ate at least twice as much as we put away. The lettuce is going crazy out there, pretty soon it will bolt. I have gotten so I don’t even try to grow lettuces during the hot period of summer. The peas are coming on now.

    I’m not sure how to value our garden in terms of monetary value. I’m sure that eating all this fresh organic produce is terribly good for us, and organic produce costs a premium amount. But when I start to think about the amount of time we spend doing the garden, well, how much is our time worth? Of course, you could say that we are getting lots of aerobic exercise and saving the need to invest in a gym membership, so the time spent in the fresh air has its own intrinsic value.

    All I know is, the salad I had for dinner last night just couldn’t be any fresher, or taste any better. How do you put a price on that?

  14. Sheila says:

    I am jealous of your broccoli! Mine was decimated by groundhogs. . . except one that has made a beautiful comeback, However, I’m not sure it will produce in time. Starting to get hot here in East TN, Zone 7a. Also my friend gave me a few transplants of a mystery broccoli. She lost track of the variety. . . again, no sign of florets!

    Well done!

  15. Fabulous photos of strawberries and raddichio. Wow, 14 lbs of aspargus? Or was that 14 lbs of strawberries? Either way, very impressive. You must have a nice big garden. I get a few ounces of strawberries a week, and have no room for asparagus. And if I were to compare my broccoli heads to yours, what is a wrist in your photo would be a finger in mine! But I love my garden anyway.

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