Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Crudités For Two

This weekend, was sort of a busy one. We made good progress on the studio renovation project. Painted the walls and now it's looking more like a room and less like a construction zone. Next up is the floor installation, this coming weekend. So needless to say, but I'll say it anyway, I was busy. What to do with all those veggies I picked? I quickly threw together this crudité platter for the two of us and we munched on it with some ranch dressing for dip.

Pretty, and tasty too.

In between things, I always have time to check on my garden. I discovered that this artichoke plant is growing it's first bud! That makes three out of six artichoke plants that have buds. I think my experiment might be a success! But I won't really know for sure until I taste the results. Still waiting for that first artichoke to get a little bigger before I pick it. I was surprised that this one was the next to flower as there is another plant that is bigger than it. I guess you never know about these things.

This tiny bud first appeared on Saturday, but the photo was taken today.

This has been one wet July. Another 1.75 inches of rain registered in my rain gauge yesterday. The corn is still standing! Still looks good too. I have to wonder if the wet weather is helping the artichokes. I've noticed that they really don't like to be dry. Some plants will tolerate a little drying out, but not these. I learned early on, when the 'chokes were still seedlings in 20 ounce cups, that they did not appreciate being dry whatsoever, as they would shrivel at the drop of a hat. So I paid extra attention to keep them watered ever since, but not as much as this rain has been giving them, mind you.

Most US artichokes are grown in Monterey County California. The central California climate is an ideal growing condition for artichokes. The summers are cool, moist and foggy. A quick check of weather.com indicates that the next ten days will be 69-70 degrees and partly cloudy in the artichoke capital. Hmm... That may be why we're seeing some artichoke growth here during these wet days. Okay, I confess, I had this hunch and that's why I thought to try artichokes this year. I read about where most of them are grown and recalled how wet and cool our summer was here last year. Thought I'd give it a shot.

Another surprise this weekend, my peas are flowering again. Peas usually flower once and then that's it. The heat of the summer usually kills them and it's best to just pull them out and plant something else. This time last year, my pea plants were long gone having yellowed and dried out on their own. Well, I have been wanting to cut off a few tendrils and do some photos. Hoping I'd have my studio space ready soon to set up some lights and do it right, I never pulled the plants. I think, maybe this rainy, not so hot weather has spurred them on to produce another small crop. Lucky me!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I liked eating the crudité. It was a nice snack after all of the painting. The carrots were also a nice portable snack to take with me in the car. The artichokes are looking good. Great photos again.