May harvest …

For my own little record-keeping, I decided that this year …  I would write brief but regular entries on the different produce gathered from my balcony potager for each month of the gardening season.

I tried keeping manual records last year and, upon the suggestion of the ‘water guy’, … I even made an effort to weigh them to know the total amount (in weight) I managed to harvest of the different produce. But it was too much hassle … and sometimes, when I picked them just before I put them into the pan, I totally forgot to weigh them and to take a note … haizzz.

So as to save myself the trouble of having to go through all that hassle this year, I am just going to take snapshots of the different produce that I gather each month … and this will suffice as a record of what I grew and managed to harvest each month!

In addition, it will also serve as a visual reminder for the ‘water guy’ who sometimes claims (out of forgetfulness!) that he did not see much produce from my balcony potager despite the amount of effort that I had put in! Huh??

So the following pictures show the mini harvest for the month of May. It was not much as the gardening season had only just begun to kick-off for me here on my balcony potager in Lausanne. But … I am hopeful that there will be more to harvest this month! :)

Greens

Some greens … for the frying pan and for the salad bowl: Siow Pat Tsai and mixed salad leaves.

roots

Some roots that were sown last autumn: Red Florence spring onions and Purple Haze carrots.

Asian

Tropical herbs: Indian pennyworts or gotukola or pegaga (which survived the long flight from Singapore to Switzerland wrapped in wet tissues in March) and lemongrass.

strawberry

And last but not least (as I had forgotten to take snapshots of the Tom Thumb peas that I had popped into my mouth), … strawberries! Not enough to suit me … but I am happy to finally be able to enjoy freshly picked strawberries once again. The taste is incomparably better than those bought in the supermarket!.

And so this sums up my small harvest for the month of May. :)

Previous entries on balcony potager in May:

 

Balcony ‘potager’ in late May …

The month of May is ending and my balcony potager is still a ‘work in progress’. In fact, there is still a lot more work to be done before I can rest a little easier … but … it is slowly but surely getting there.

I have planted more seedlings outside when the weather was sunnier and dry … but … each time when the weather turned less favourable, my heart started to flip … wondering if my little babies would be able to take the change in temperature or withstand the gust of strong winds.

There have been casualties as a result of the changing weather … but … it cannot match the numbers that I have lost as a result of the attack of the gnat’s larvae. This year, a number of my seedlings succumbed to the voracious appetites of these larvae. These days whenever I would plant out my seedlings, I would remove the soils and only plant the seedlings bare-rooted. It is a calculated risk that I am taking but I do not wish to transfer the larvae into the container outside. A few of the seedlings died after the transplanting, but many have continued to grow well enough.

So how is my balcony potager progressing? Here is a few quick shots taken this morning …

SAM_5883AThe balcony is starting to look greener nowadays … and when the morning is nice and sunny, it warms my heart to see my babies outside looking well. :D

SAM_5882.AThe balcony is getting a bit crowded, I guess, … but I still have more seedlings to plant out. Right now, I would lurve to lay my hands on a recycled wooden plank to use to repair the previous garden table top (which I salvaged from the garbage area) which is now half-rotted out. Once it is repaired, I shall be able to fit in a few more containers.

SAM_5862AAs the planting is still in progress … there is always a lot of shifting and moving things around in order to fit in the new comers to the balcony potager!

SAM_5864AThe top of the garden shed has become a little area for a number of seedlings as it is not as exposed to strong gusts of wind and sunshine, thereby offering some protection to the seedlings to get them acclimatised to the conditions prevailing outside.

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My cheap version of cloches to protect the more fragile plants from chilly evenings or from heavy bouts of rain … whatever works lah! ;)

SAM_5874AOur balcony table … cum my working garden table! hehehe … This was after some tidying that I did yesterday. However, I cannot wait to clear this table of all the gardening stuff once I am finished with the repotting and replanting  as I hate to see it full of clutter!

SAM_5767ASo to make it less of an eyesore … I decided to gather some of the wildflowers growing at the bushes down in the small street below (during my little trip to pick some stinging nettles for my tomato seedlings).

It certainly helps to brighten up my working table … and best of all …

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… it is also useful for attracting the bees! So the beautiful wildflower bouquet fulfills a double duty! I loikeeee …. :D

 

A balcony with a view …

There was some very beautiful light this evening as I was working on the balcony … and so I decided to grab my camera and started snapping a few shots for my own little souvenirs.

But then … such a beautiful view deserves to be shared. So this was how it had looked like from our balcony this evening just before 8.00 o’clock.

SAM_5757.AI love the juxtaposition of grey clouds and bright light. Although the day had been mostly sunny, there was a short spell of light drizzle in the evening which explained the grey clouds (or rain clouds).

A few close-up shots.

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PS: In case you are wondering what are those poles that you see on the top three pictures … they are to indicate the height of the buildings that will be built in that empty fields. It is a legal requirement in the canton of Vaud (which Lausanne belongs to), for building developers to indicate the height of the building that is to be built.

Fortunately for us, the buildings that are going to be constructed (a large residential complex covering a wide area) are not high enough to block our view of the lake. However, our neighbours staying in the lower floors will not be as lucky. Poor them … :(