The hydroponic garden is just growing out of control. Ideally it would be good to space the plants out some more, but realistically that’s just way more work than I want to get into at the moment. So instead the wife and I have the delicious burden of having to eat fresh salads frequently enough that we keep the growth in check.
Here’s a nice before picture:
Above you can see starting at the top left and going clockwise, spinach, spinach (both are Bloomsdale Savoy), Sweet Basil, Grand Rapids Lettuce, Simpsons Curled Lettuce (hiding under the…), and Georgia Collard.
Those with sharp eyes may spot some tell-tale nute burn on the lettuce near the center. It’s mild and I just added about a gallon of water so it should be fine. Also, the Simpsons Curled lettuce in the bottom middle is not actually that yellow. The camera makes everything look less green and more yellow than it is. Yes, that means the spinach is frighteningly green. It’s so succulent that the leaves will literally make your fingers wet.
Here’s a better shot of the Georgia Collard. I don’t think I’ll be growing it ever again in a DWC like this. It’s just WAY too big for this system. I’m eating Collard greens every couple days just so the other plants can get some light.
Here’s the two spinach plants. Most of the leaves are the left one, since it’s a few weeks older. The leaves curl a hell of a lot, but seem obscenely healthy. Not sure if that much curling is normal, but at the moment it doesn’t seem to matter. It’s growing fast and seems happy.
This is mostly the Grand Rapids lettuce. The Simpsons is slightly yellower, so it’s easy to tell them apart.
Here’s a decent shot of the Simpsons Curled which, as I said above, is not actually that yellow. You can also see in this shot some of the stalks I’ve pinched off on the Collard to harvest leaves. I just pinch in with my thumbnails, which I keep long-ish for this kind of thing, to sever the stems. These plants are so vibrant and turgid they crisply snap off cleanly.
Here’s the basil. You can see here that it too is curling under a lot. Also, the chlorosis that appears in this picture is nothing remotely that pronounced. It’s more like a variation between healthy green and really healthy green.
This is the biggest leaf that I harvested off the Collard with a Penguin mint tin as a size comparison.
Considering how much Collard I’m going to be eating I’m going to have to find more recipes for this plant. I’m already getting tired of it steamed.
Here’s the whole harvest laid out. This was 3 salads and a double portion of collards.
And finally we have an “after” shot of the DWC. In 2-3 days we’ll be right back where we were, but this time I think that second spinach plant may be contributing to the harvest. Good thing, I love spinach. (Thus the reason I planted two.
I’m thinking about maybe just taking the Georgia Collard out altogether in a week or two, moving the Simpsons over one spot and moving the smaller spinach down. That’d leave me an open spot in the back for a bell pepper plant I’ve started. Not sure on that, but I’m toying with the idea.
If you’ve got an ideas about the leaf curl on the spinach and/or basil, or favorite recipes for Collard greens, let me know.