What are you getting from your winter garden?

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What plants work in your garden this time of year? For us this year it has been kale. We have not been under 20 degrees yet this winter and the kale has been great. Think the variety is Vates. When harvested, it needs to be stripped from the middle vein, or it will tend to be too rough to eat. Its high on my list for planting again next spring.

-- fred (fred@mddc.com), December 15, 2001


I did a little plot,,on top of the septic,, surrounded by straw bales with a window over it,, planted spinach, kale,lettuce,, was hoping for some fresh greesn into NOV,, but with the weather we've been having,,I ate the last of them last week. But this isnt a typical winter for us here in Mich

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), December 15, 2001.

This is an unusually warm winter in central IN but we've been having turnips, Daikon radishes, lettuce and broccoli. The turnip greens have been good until last week, when they started getting tough and strong. Usually these plus spinach and sometimes peas last until late October or early November.

-- Rosalie (Dee) (deatline@globalsite.net), December 15, 2001.

I still have beautiful "Bright Lights" swiss chard. And red beets. And carrots. Not screaming cold here in Indiana yet. When it is I'll lose the swiss chard...

-- Gailann Schrader (gtschrader@aol.com), December 15, 2001.

I still have lettuce (Fall mix from Cooks) and Bright lights Swiss Chard and green onions. The lettuce is the best I have ever grown. It is beautiful. It is planted in a 4 X 4 ft (square ft garden) box. I keep it covered at night. It has been down in the 20's a couple of times here in S. E. KS but has not hurt the lettuce at all.

-- Belle (gardenbelle@terraworld.net), December 15, 2001.

I cut all the remaining parsley in our garden the last week in October. The temps have been so warm here in Indiana that the parsley just kept sending up new shoots and I harvested as much or more last weekend as I did in October.

-- Sandy in IN (sjmsjd@earthlink.net), December 15, 2001.

We had lettuce from the garden for lunch today. I have several different varieties including a romaine. The lettuce has tasted wonderful this fall. I still have radishes too, although most of them are so big that I am feeding them to the chickens. The hens are still laying well. We haven't had much prolonged cold yet here in southeast Missouri. Mona Lea

-- Mona Lea (monalea@hotmail.com), December 15, 2001.

SNOW!! Over a foot deep and still comin' down! Envy you guys with your fresh greens. Tomas in b.c.

-- Tomas (bakerzee@hotmail.com), December 15, 2001.

Dare I post a response to this question? Sure, the weather is why I moved to California. Our night time lows have hit 30 degrees a couple time. I cover the tomatoes at night, but they seem to be in hiberation. They have about a dozen green tomatoes on them, even so. The parsley is thriving and the broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage love this time of year. They are about to start forming heads already and I have 5 6-paks of replacements under a shop light in the garage that are 3 inches tall. I planted lettuce two weeks ago and the plot is starting to resemble a chi chi chia pet. The green chili peppers are still putting out and we have huge carrots that are being dug each weekend. And this is a great time to pick citrus: oranges, limes, mandarin oranges and grapefruit. The grapefruit are dropping like yellow softballs from the tree. I'm giving them away to the neighbors that don't grow them. But the thing I have my eye on is a 30lb bunch of green bananas hanging over the driveway. Any day now and it may decide to bend over, so to speak. They appear to be large enough to ripen.

Even with all this going on, I am still running inside from the mailbox with each new seed catalog, diving into it with anticipation of next spring. Coming from Missouri, I still approach gardening by the seasons.

-- Dwight (summit1762@aol.com), December 15, 2001.

We too have had unusually warm weather so far this year in the mountains of PA. Still of course have brussel sprouts in the garden. Even in cold winters I leave most of them on the plants and pick them as I need them for the table. Also have broccli coming in. Did plant a few new plants in October but the older ones are still producing pretty good too. Have carrots left in the ground during any winter months. Parsley growing well also. I did start seeds for tomato plants in late August and now have our livingroom filled with 10 plants and one pepper plant. Think I will just decorate the plants for Christmas and not have a tree ??!! Was going to heat the little greenhouse all winter but thought that was sort of wasteful with the kerosone heater.They are giving us about 6 tomatoes a week. Enough to feel as if we are so smart !!! don't forget you can always grow your sprouts on the kitchen window too.

-- Helena (windyacs@ptdprolog.net), December 17, 2001.

I HAD a wonderful garden going on and the weather has been extra mild, we even finally got some rain. I have broccoli, cabbages, rutabagas, Brussels spouts, kale, carrots, turnips, beets, Swiss chard, multiplier onions, lettuce, romaine, and some misc. other greens. We were out of town doing one of our craft shows and came home and part of our fence was down and our garden was full of our guineas. They defoiliated all of the broccoli, Brussels sprouts, romaine, all the lettuces, and the rutabagas. I had the Swiss chard in cages (because the deer got in during the summer and ate all I had planted then) so they were safe. Arggggh! The carrots are fine though. I don't know if there is enough green top left for everything else to exist or not, we'll see. Fortunately, I picked the cabbage before leaving town, so they are safe in the refrig. I can still pick the rutabagas (they didn't bother the roots). Guess what I want for Christmas--a better garden fence--another job for my husband! :^)

-- Sharon (spangenberg@hovac.com), December 17, 2001.

Picked spinach and radishes last week....I hope the spinach(Giant Noble) will come back for a second pick.

-- Jason in S.Tenn. (AJAMA5@netscape.net), December 17, 2001.

Oranges, oranges, oranges, oranges, and did I mention the ORANGES?

-- kathy h (ckhart55@earthlink.net), December 17, 2001.

Here in Middle Tn we have carrots, lettuce, sugar snap peas (growing like great guns, have lots of flowers but producing almost no peas). Lots of turnips in the ground. The greens from them are too tough to eat now so they are loved by the chickens. I planted some garlic a couple weeks ago and I see that five have come up.

We haven't had a hard frost yet. Hope to experiment with putting in my perrenial saved seeds in the flower garden now for a spring/summer surprise. Also, have some shrub berries I'd like to experiment outside.

-- Ann Markson (tngreenacres@hotmail.com), December 17, 2001.

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