Sunday, December 27, 2009

Snow Survivors

Survivors of the snow include almost everything.
I wasn't sure about the lemon tree but I figured it was pretty big and should be able to handle the cold weather by now. I was right. Not one leaf fell from it's branches and it's still going strong. Of course it wasn't actuall in the snow but it was exposed to the below 30 degree weather.
A couple of the orphaned cacti died but they were on their way out anyway. They had turned yellow and splotchy. Maybe I should have watered them but since I had no idea what kind of cactus they were I didn't know.
Even the strawberry plants are still green and they did get hit with the snow and cold. Looking forward to some nice berries in the spring and maybe even in late winter if everything goes well.
The cabbage and root veggies are all looking nice. I'll have to remember that for next season.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Cacti Orphans

I have finally had the change during the day to take pictures of the cactus plants I have adopted. The previous owner moved several states away and didn't want the hassle of moving things that could injure her if she wasn't careful moving them.
In my brief attempt at figuring out exactly what kinds of cacti they were I have found out that I would rather have someone who knows something about them to just tell me. The first two are very similar and may be the same variety while the other two are very likely not.
I hope someone can tell me if they can survive 20-something degree weather since we are scheduled to have some in the next few days and they are still sitting outside in pots. Which reminds me my lemon tree is due to come back in soon.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Chinese Onion

I didn't know there was a particular onion that was Chinese but that is exactly what I have been given. They're just sprouts at the moment but I have also been told how to plant and harvest them.
What you do is dig a trench about a foot deep, plant the onion sprouts in the trench and just cover the tops of the plant (I was given sprouts from the seeds of last season). As the plants grow you keep covering more of the onion until the trench is entirely filled in. They make medium onions but for the first year or so only the tops should be eaten so the rest of the onion can develop.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Lots o' Pots

One of our many friends has moved away again leaving her sons to tend to the house until it gets sold. They really don't want to take care of the pots of plants she left, not to mention the several bags of potting soil, and so they have asked me to get rid of it all for them.
Usually I would say, "Yes! Of course!" So I did. And now I have a good many pots sitting in my driveway waiting to be placed in their permanent homes. Among them are four different types of cactus, a few different flowers including dianthus, and some post that I'm sure are just some kind of local weed that has taken over and covered the dirt.
I have not gotten all of the pots and dirt yet and will post a series of pictures showing the wonderful findings soon (as in some time this year, I hope).
It was all outside durring the recent freeze so it should all be able to stand whatever Texas has to throw at them. In short, they're staying outside.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Winter Veggies (Texas)

I know this probably won't work in a lot of areas but where live these are some of the survivors you can look to for veggies in the cold weather.
The great old standby is cabbage. At least in the south it's what you eat on new years with black eyes peas in hopes of having a better year. In the beginning it was because there was nothing else to eat and that's what they had.
Here in the DFW metroplex it's a little warmer (3-6 degrees) than the surrounding cities due to lots of heat being produced. In fact now that there are a lot of gas wells just burning off the initial fumes coming out of wells it should be a little warmer than that even.
Due to the warmness other crops are still doing well. For instance my beets, carrots, radishes and lemon grass are doing great. If there's a particularly cold night just cover your plants with a cold frame or, if nothing else, a sheet.
Let me know when you make some soup with your winter veggies and I'll come try it!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Winter is finally here

I'm in Texas. What did you expect?
Anyway, it's supposed to have flurries or freezing rain or some such thing tonight so I finally harvested all of my peppers. Keep in mind that the only thing I put on them was water so although they're not super big there are plenty of them, most of which will have to be frozen because I don't believe I will actually use them every day.
I also still need to separate the hot ones from the bells and sweet peppers. Just so you can see them all I put them in a strainer and voila!
Any other harvests out there?