Notes from Windward: #71


A February Harvest

February 12, 2011


     Keeping some root crops in the ground over the winter is a good idea, in theory. You don't have to find appropriate storage for them and in mid winter or early spring, when you are craving fresh garden veggies, you can go out and dig them up. This is not so easy when the ground is hidden under alternating layers of snow and ice. But eventually, snow does melt, and ice does too, and somehow, remarkably enough, those root crops are right where you seeded them many months before (if some hungry critter hasn't gotten to them first).

walking onions, Jerusulum artichokes and carrots

     We have been enjoying springlike days here on the plateau, and snow only remains in the shadiest sections of the forest where the sun hardly shines. This afternoon I harvested a few of our roots to bring into the kitchen--walking onions, carrots, parsnips and Jerusalem artichokes. Our stores of potatoes and winter squash are keeping us well nourished, but variety is nice too. Of the batch, Jerusalem artichokes by far deserve a worthy mention. While not all that popular in stores, this self seeding tuber in the sunflower family certainly does earn its keep. Perhaps higher yielding than the potato, you only really need to plant it once and then just keep harvesting, being sure to leave some in the ground for next year's crop.

Notes From Windward - Index - Vol. 71