Monday, December 23, 2013

Snow Peas

I've planted the snow pea seeds after they had a good freeze. Now we get to wait and see if they come up.  The ground is plenty fertile and most of the other plants have died back now so there's little competition for nutrients. The only possible competitors would be the few carrots still sprouting up and growing.
I ate one of them yesterday with a little brown sugar and butter glaze and it was so much better than the store bought carrots. It had a more flavorful taste to it reminiscent of a sweet potato.  That reminds me that I really need to go check the potato patch and see if there's anything to dig up. You never know until you look.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Resilient Agave

Some plants were meant to survive the cold better than others. This agave has kept out of the snow by letting the ice form on the leaf and then pulling away from it. Now it has a canopy to hide under and can get a bit of sunlight. Even without doing this the agave is resilient enough that the frost won't hurt it.

The saffron just under it is just as resilient although it looks much more prone to the frost.  Unlike the agave the saffron is not so tolerant of heat and bides it time until cooler weather arrives. Here it's as happy as it can be and will grow through the winter into the spring.

Another of the winter happy plants in the garden is the green onion but it's more like the agave in that it can take the heat and cold and doesn't die back in either unlike it's relatives the chives or larger onions.  Green onions are a great way to have a fresh taste to your cooking all year long.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Frozen Berries

They look like little glazed candies but you probably don't want to eat these being a holly. Holly bushes are really resistant to cold though and can be a welcome addition to your yard. Not only does it have leaves throughout the year it also has these bright berries which really pop.

Personally I prefer the more spiky holly bushes, the ones you don't want to brush up against.  At UTA there is a great specimen of one of these which you probably wouldn't notice unless you looked up since it has been trained to be a small tree with the leaves overhead.

Sometimes the only thing that separates a small tree from a bush is how it's pruned.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Pansies In The Frost

Although I mentioned pansies in the last post I didn't expect to get a shot of them coated in ice. This is a good show of how hardy they can be. When the ice melts in a couple days they will just keep on growing.

On the way back to the house this evening I saw many more pansies in front of businesses having even more color and showy blooms than this one.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Winter Veggies

With a cold freeze upon us it's time to forget the tender plants of spring and summer and face the facts that only some of the leafier green plants such as lettuce and cabbage and our friendly root vegetables like carrots and radishes can stand the upcoming weather.
One of the more popular but less remembered for the garden is the snow pea, a quick and nutritious vegetable found in health food stores and Chinese cuisine.  It can be eaten either in a salad, in a stir fry, or all by itself either raw, steamed, or sautéed.
The onion family is also a star this time of year with green onions still staying green and chives popping up and even possibly flowering if the weather warms up for a few days.
For the flower lovers the pansy, although it can't stand the heat is a staple for landscapers in the winter months.