Monday, October 24, 2016

The garden of greens

I Heart Grow Journey. Made from 'Prize Choy' bok choy leaves, planted a few weeks ago.

I know my bok choy will not make big boks, because they are now very shady. But I like the little boks. I mix them into salads or add them at the last minute to Asian curries for a swirl of dark, anti-oxidant green.

Nasturtium (top left), teeny kale, minutina, sheep sorrel
Tatsoi, rapini (middle) baby arugula
Fava bean leaves, bok choy, mature arugula

My fall greens are giving us daily salads and side dishes.

Interestingly, one crop that has not done well is the red chard. It is in a super-shady section of  the vegetable plot and I think I just pushed it over the edge, or simply planted it too late. Or maybe the seedlings don't like being stamped by little possum feet.

The arugula right beside it is just fine.

As I wrote in my piece about edible shade gardening for Gardenista recently, arugula is the Obama of the shade garden. It germinates quickly and reliably and grows from spring through summer and well into the cold nights. Its leaves are always in great shape. You can count on the arugula not to disappoint. Also, it looks good.

In my most recent seeds of the month package I received a wild arugula cultivar, 'Grazia.' I am very curious to see whether it will germinate better than another wild arugula cultivar I tried from Botanical Interests earlier in the year. That one had an abysmal germination rate, in each of three sowings. Like, 5% (I'm not knocking Botanical Interests - I seed from them every year).

Regular arugula is actually a different plant - Eruca sativa. Wild arugula is Diplotaxis tenuifolia.

Plant now? Our first frost date technical falls this week. I think I will, as wild arugula tolerates colder soils. The peas and chicory I am going to hoard for early next spring.


  1. the bottom left ones look a little bit like watercress (nasturtium oficinale?)

    1. Bottom left are fava bean leaves. I'll add names, sorry!

  2. I planted "rocket" arugula seeds today from Eden Brothers.......I'll let you know how they do!

  3. That first photo will replace the I <3 NY magnet I have on my (Joburg) fridge!


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