Growing Greener: Fall Harvest

2, Nov, 2012 Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy

The first year in any garden can be tricky.  The Green & Grow Apprentices had many challenges (trampled cucumbers, high pH, and pesky aphids), but overall our raised beds produced a considerable amount of produce!

Since it was our first year, we had fun and tried a little bit of everything: arugula, basil (sweet and purple), beans (green and yellow bush, pole, and red noodle), beets, carrots (rainbow and orange), cucumbers, pumpkins (giant and pie), green onions, peppers (jalapenos and sweet bell), kale, leeks, mescaline greens, Napa cabbage, parsley, peas (snow and sugar snap), red lettuce, rosemary, sage, spinach, strawberries, Swiss chard, tomatoes, and turnips!  The bold text represents the produce that did well enough for us to donate more than a pound of product to Lovin Spoonfulls.   Although, we definitely harvested over a pound of peas and strawberries–they were too delicious to leave Dewey Square!

2012/13 apprentices with a mid-October harvest

Late October harvest: leeks, kale, turnips, chard, beans, herbs

Next spring we’ll rotate our crops and decide on an approach with this year’s class of apprentices.  One thing we’ll definitely grow again next year are leeks, not only are they structurally beautiful growing in the garden but the potato-leek soup we made was so delicious!   The apprentices enjoyed the soup so much that they asked if we could share our recipe with our blog readers.  Happy harvesting!

Greenway Horticulturalist, Darrah, showing us how to prepare leeks after harvest

  • 4 large leeks–use only the white and pale green parts.  Remove the outermost leaves, slice lengthwise and thinly chop.
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 T butter
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 C water
  • 2 C vegetable broth
  • 3 medium sized red potatoes cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 3 medium sized yellow potatoes cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (fresh thyme or sage works well here too)
  • dash red chili sauce
  • Salt & Pepper
  • half-n-half to taste

Saute the leeks in the butter and olive oil until soft and clear, add garlic and saute for another two minutes using the chili sauce, salt and pepper to season.  Add the liquid ingredients and bring to a boil.  Add the potatoes and cook until a fork inserted breaks the potato in half, stir in the fresh herbs and remove from heat.  Serve with light cream or half-n-half to taste.