Today I spent planting a rhubarb patch. A friend and partner of mine, Bruce Bush offered to give me one of his old rhubarb plants. He planted it about 30 years ago and he warned me that it was huge and I would get alot of rhubarb starts from it. I picked it up on Tuesday morning. Lucky for me I took the pickup because he had to load the monster into the back with the front loader of his tractor! I kid you not, that plant was the size of a large table! Today was the first chance i had time to attack the chore of splitting and planting the starts. Did I say attack? Well, that is exactly what I had to do! I hacked those mammoth roots apart with a sharp shovel. Some of those rootes were three feet long and five inched wide at the top! By noon I had managed to get what I hope were viable starts divided and so I loaded them into my trailer and headed across the creed to plant them in a freshly plowed piece of ground. Two weeks ago I had planted my first 20 plants and they were all living, so I hope this will be a good location. I planted and planted and planted! I couldn't believe it, but there were over 80 starts from that one old rhubarb plant! With my first twenty, I now have 100 rhubarb plants in the ground! I feel like a big time rhubarb farmer now! I will have to be patient because these won't produce until next year and not really come into their own for two years.
I love to just walk through the gardens and look at everything. I spend way too much time just looking and marveling at how everything is growing, but it is one of the great joys of being a gardener. I never know what surprises I may find. Last Thursday there were surprise broccoli crowns--definitely the earliest I've ever grown. Today I found several hard heads of cabbage! That is even more unusual that the broccoli. I have never managed to get cabbage in June. Tomorrow I will cut my first head and see if it is indeed solid all the way through.
Our first Anchorage market is this Wednesday. Oh how I long to be able to take in new baby potatoes! I am not sure if they are done yeat and I will resist the temptation to go and pull one of those green plants up and check underneath until Tuesday. Wouldn't that be something--new potatoes on July 1?
My greenhouse is just about to give us our first slicing tomatoes. We are now eating our cherry Sugar Lumps, but I always count the first day we eat BLTs as the first tomato day. This year I am experimenting with growing the tomatoes and cucumbers with a semi-hydroponic system. I am having my ups and downs. experiencing some different nutritional problems in the plants, but the plants look fantastic and I have never had so many fruits made this early. Some plants already have seven hands of tomatoes set on! It is really unfortuante that I don't live green tomatoes I could eat all I wanted right now. I will have to be patient and wait for the ripe ones.
The corn is starting to tassel. i must get it suckered right away--good job for Monday. Speaking of Monday, it is rapidly approaching Sunday so this farm lady had better sign off. After all, I've had a busy day planting rhubarb and admiring my gardens.