Lovely spring for gardening

We have been very fortunate that our mild winter, coupled with a mild spring have resulted in early harvests. I can’t decide if this bodes well or ill for the overall harvest. For a while we were getting 1/2″ to 1″ rain every week, which is perfect. It would seriously be six days of sun and one day of rain; in my gardening memory I don’t remember a spring like this.

I’ve been picking alpine strawberries for almost 2 months now:

Red Wonder: super intense strawberry flavor.
Yellow Wonder: these are ripe when they are fuller, the skin is a creamy off-white and the seeds have darkened. Also, the berry almost falls off the stem when you go to pick it. They have the most wonderful tropical, pineapple flavor.
Bumblebee on asparagus flowers
Sugar snap peas: this picture was taken a month ago, the plants have easily quadrupled in size.

Sugar snap pea flower
Bee using my moist potting soil to collect water. “Dirty” water also carries salts and minerals necessary for the bees. See her extended proboscis? Click to embiggen.

I’ve picked a quart and a half of blueberries, here are a few:

This is just to show you scale regarding the strawberries. They are small but mighty flavorful! The blueberries are incredible. I expect to pick another quart tomorrow.
Mr. Fox longing for the chickens.
“I wish I could get in there!” He was there for over 30 minutes. He actually laid down and just stared at them for most of the time. He eventually got up and left…I thought, only to circle back around and stare some more. The chickens were on high alert.
Baby meyer lemons!
Beautiful poppies, the bees love them.

We’ve picked several quarts of sugar snap peas, about a dozen rogue potatoes, a cabbage, some broccoli (which was amazingly delicious), black raspberries, a few red raspberries and we just pulled the garlic yesterday. The problem with this early harvest is the plants that only produce one crop: they’re producing it one or more months earlier and once that harvest is done, it’s done. I can think of a few off the top of my head: blueberries, ALL tree fruits, June-bearing strawberries (all DONE in MAY!!!). I’m sure there are more. Normally you wait until July and August to have peaches and nectarines, but this year we should have them in the next week or two. So once those months roll around, I wonder what there will be? The one good thing for us regarding this mild spring is that we’ve actually been able to harvest heads of broccoli, usually the spring is just too warm for broccoli and it bolts before we can even harvest any heads. We shall see what this summer will bring, it will be 97 degrees F on Wednesday and Thursday. Summer in Maryland…hot and muggy, yay.

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