Monday Recap: Promises of Spring

The calendar says it is March, which is supposed to be the meteorological start to spring. However the weather itself must have missed getting that email, and dumped us with another load of snow last week. I measured a little over 7 inches, and we were lucky it wasn’t more since about 50 miles south of us they got over 20 inches. Then the cold air came in right behind the snow, making for daytime high temps around 20°F on Thursday. The average high in our area in early March is over 50°F, and you don’t have to be a math major to see we were 30 degrees below normal!

March snowfall

March snowfall

Of course, what’s normal anymore when it comes to the weather? I know folks from colder climates may well be saying “welcome to our world”, but it has brought some unusual challenges to gardening here. I am prepared for the greenhouse door to be snowed in, but I know I can shovel a clearing to get it open. But I was totally unprepared to get inside the greenhouse and find my potting soil was all frozen in big chunks! I had to bring it inside the house to thaw. While I was at it, I brought in a few small pots and a couple of plug flats so I will have what I need to start some seeds.

young Baby Oakleaf lettuce plants

young Baby Oakleaf lettuce plants

Once I had usable potting soil, I transplanted some seedlings I had started back in February. I now have parsley, arugula and lettuce going, as well as some Senposai and Mizspoona greens. Now I hope the cold frame bed will be thawed in a couple of weeks so I have a place to plant them! The seeds I started included broccoli, cabbage, kohlrabi and a bit of spring kale. I’m also giving broccoli raab a try again, and hopefully this time I will figure out how I like it in the kitchen. This week I will start some peppers and petunias, with tomatoes to follow soon after.

kohlrabi seedlings

kohlrabi seedlings

The snow wasn’t all bad though. It gave my wife the raw material she needed to do some snow dyeing. I had a heavy white short sleeve t-shirt made by Comfort Colors I gave her to dye for me. I chose a green shade of dye (yucca). Can you tell I am ready for spring? I’ll take a green shirt until I see green in the garden. With snow dyeing you never know exactly how the colors will turn out, and I love the look on this one. I could wear it out in the garden, and hide amongst the foliage! The photo doesn’t really do the shirt justice.

snow dyed t-shirt

snow dyed t-shirt

It was my wife’s turn to cook last week. For one meal she stuffed some chicken breasts with a mix that included spinach and feta cheese. The spinach came from the freezer, some of our spring crop. To go with the chicken, we cut up a North Georgia Candy Roaster squash into slices, tossed with some oil and salt, and then baked them.

North Georgia Candy Roaster squash

North Georgia Candy Roaster squash

We both agreed that the squash was pretty much unremarkable, and lacked flavor. It was so bad, the leftovers wound up on the compost pile. We have too many good tasting winter squashes left that I would rather eat instead. We saw lots and lots of them last fall at the Ashville, NC farmer’s market, so I know they are popular. And I know this is supposed to be a tasty squash, but the only one I harvested last year left much to be desired, and I won’t grow this C. maxima type again this year. The baked stuffed chicken breasts are a favorite of mine though, even though dairy doesn’t always agree with me.

North Georgia Candy Roaster squash with baked chicken breasts

North Georgia Candy Roaster squash with baked chicken breasts

She also served up pita pizza for dinner last night, and that featured fresh arugula and spinach from the greenhouse. The spinach has really started growing in there, and we have enough for a salad or two already.

spinach and arugula for pizza

spinach and arugula for pizza

I hope you have enjoyed seeing some of what’s going on here in early March. To see what others are harvesting and cooking up, visit Daphne’s Dandelions where Daphne hosts Harvest Mondays. I’ll be back soon with more happening from Happy Acres.

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8 Responses to Monday Recap: Promises of Spring

  1. Daphne says:

    I so envy that spinach. I’ve got about two months before I get to enjoy any fresh spinach here. And I love the shirt. Though you should have modeled it for us :>
    Daphne recently posted…CompostMy Profile

    • Dave says:

      I am happy about the spinach because that in the cold frame bed is still buried under snow! I had the shirt on yesterday but didn’t pose for a photo. It was a tad too cool for me to be wearing short sleeves, but later this week it is supposed to warm up.

  2. Norma Chang says:

    We were also supposed to get the snow you got last week but it stayed south of us and in NYC, just missed us and I’m not complaining, agree with Daphne, you should have modeled the shirt for us.
    Norma Chang recently posted…Harvest Monday, March 9, 2015 – Indoor Seed StartingMy Profile

  3. Michelle says:

    We seem to get the flip side of the unusual weather coin out my way, it got up to 84°F on Friday, I was shocked. I’m hoping we settle into our usual cooler spring weather so my spring veggies don’t all produce too quickly. Your greenhouse really does seem to give you a jump on spring greens, frozen bags or soil or not!
    Michelle recently posted…Harvest Monday – March 2, 2015My Profile

  4. Margaret says:

    Oh – those greens are something to be envied! I’m so looking forward to that first fresh salad from the garden – it will be good not to have to stop by the salad section of the grocery store any more. That’s too bad about the squash – it sure looks delicious.
    Margaret recently posted…Update – Beginning of MarchMy Profile

  5. mac says:

    Our temp here is in a roller coaster pattern, I’m sure we’ll get snow again soon.
    I don’t have overwintered spinach this year, last winter I had a good harvest of spinach but they were too sweet for my taste, it was like eating sugar, didn’t know what causes the excessive sweetness, it was the first time I didn’t like my spinach.
    mac recently posted…Harvest Monday – March 9, 2015My Profile

  6. Dave's SFG says:

    The storms have been staying south of us for a change so I am happy. We have so much snow I don’t know when we will see the ground again. Any greens I see will be indoors under lights. I like the shirt, great choice of colors. Hope we all see green again soon.
    Dave’s SFG recently posted…Seed Starting SeasonMy Profile

  7. Catherine says:

    I have to say, I’m so impressed with your harvest of greens given the adverse weather conditions! You’ve spurred me on to move a bit faster with my sowing (it’s about 10 degrees here in London so there’s no excuse!)

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