Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Garden Suprises

Today was harvest day for the Wednesday South Anchorage Farmers Market. I love harvest days, especially when there is such a lovely variety and new things every week. Every year we try some new vegetables and some new varieties of old favorites. It is always fun to see what we get. We always intend to be diligent in labeling every thing we plant, but invariably something goes wrong and we are never sure where the new things are planted and we just have to wait until they manifest themselves. This makes for some fun surprises, like today when I discovered the Violet Queen cauliflower growing among the snowy white ones! I am afraid the heads are a bit small while the plants are huge, but they are pretty. I will have to think about planting them again next year. One thing I know I will be planting again is the Red Cimeron Romaine lettuce which headed up this week. I knew it was out there somewhere, but we have five different red lettuce varieties and as usual I didn't know where 'Cimeron' was planted so when it distinguished itself with erect beautiful heads it was a real treat to see. I am still waiting to see where the cheddar cauliflower is planted and where the Broccoli Romanesque will show up, maybe next week they'll make my day by peeking out of their green hiding places.

Another garden surprise that I always look forward to is the opening of the dahlias. I do carefully label each plant with it's name, but I have over sixty different dahlias planted. I never remember what Midnight Moon or Firepot or anything else looks like and so I am always delighted to see the blossoms open up. Right now there are hundreds of buds on the dahlias and only a few have opened. Each day a new one blooms and I greet them like old friends. I order most of my dahlia tubers from Swan Island Dahlias and they always have the best tubers I have ever seen and a nearly endless variety to choose from. Dahlias are my favorite flowers to use in arrangements and so I am always anxious for them to come into full bloom.

This was harvest day and although I just love these days, they do exhaust me. I need to get some sleep for tomorrow is market day and if there is one day I love more than harvest day it's market day!

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