I thought that I was poised for a good spring harvest of greens. I was feeding my granddaughter Charlotte samples from my garden in early March. I had successfully transplanted everything that survived our very mild winter to my cold frame, fed them with compost and watched them grow.
But before the Ides of March, Nature decided to throw a few curve balls in the guise of not just warm but unbelievably hot weather. Days in the 60s, 70s and even a few in the 80s. Nights in the 50s. This isn't March. This is May or June. And that is exactly what my greens thought. They were growing fast and large, requiring water as the soil was beginning to dry out. Now who in the Northeast waters their garden in March? Well this year it was me.
I had perfect greens for a week. Fast growing and delicious. But soon that was over.
Beyond getting big, my winter greens developed summer-like flowers and blooms. I have never had VIT (Valerianella locusta) flower and Miner’s lettuce (Claytonia perfoliata) doesn’t flower until mid June. The Asian greens, usually succulent and slightly sweet in early Spring, are bitter and leather-like. I usually eat all of it well before that is possible. Not this year. I am already weeding for chickweed and I have seen a slug or two saunter toward a leaf or two of some seedlings I have planted. This season it seems as I can’t trust anything. And now it looks like snow.