As so often happens in the middle of May, afternoon temperatures are reaching into the low nineties. That means it’s time for my little family to eat a lot of salad. Most lettuces left in the garden for many days at such high temperatures will turn bitter, and they will bolt to flower and seed.
For people planning to save lettuce seeds from their own plants for next year, that is kind of a mixed blessing.
The Slobolt lettuce should be good for several more weeks. One of my plans for this spring was to compare Slobolt with Jericho as the heat wore on into early summer. I started them at the same time, in exactly the same way, but the Jericho seeds didn’t germinate. There is always next year . . .
Other spring crops just reaching their stride include the peas — both kinds. I have some of the regular English peas in the pasta salad that I’ve packed for today’s lunch, and the Sugar snap peas are just a little bit behind in maturity. These are beginning to get sweet, but as they get more plump, they will also get more sugary.
This is one of the four squash plants that came up. I had hoped for five, so I will probably plant another seed soon. One would think that by now I would have all the summer crops planted, and if all had gone as scheduled, almost all except the sweet potatoes would be in, but I always plan to have more energy and time that reality provides.
As it stands, I have planted the peppers, but not the eggplants. The okra and sunflowers are waiting for the space currently inhabited by carrots, beets, and some spring greens. The melons are waiting for me to get busy and finish preparing their bed. The winter squash and popcorn need to go in, too, along with some flowers and herbs.
Soon though, soon the summer garden will be in, and I will have the same lazy life as our little cat Louisiana (not really, but I can dream – right?). Here he is in one of his several favorite napping spots: