I absolutely love this time of year. While I’m watching over the tomatoes, squash, peppers, and other hot weather vegetables I get to enjoy the cool weather vegetables.
Like this morning’s harvest, which included lettuce, spinach, and yummy root vegetables. More specifically, 11 of the beets, 3 of the purple kohlrabi, and 3 of the purple top turnips.
Did you know the plural of kohlrabi is kohlrabies? Neither did I. Maybe that little tidbit of knowledge will help you win a trivia contest or spelling bee one day. The English major in me thinks I should have used kohlrabies throughout this blog post but I don’t like the ‘rabies’ part of the word.
Oh, how I love beets! I love them so much I should write a love song about them. Maybe this winter…too busy in the garden these days.
I expanded my beet area this year and sowed lots and lots and lots of them. Detroit Dark Red beets are my go to but I also like and grow Golden, Chioggia, and Cylindra beets.
I generally harvest small- to medium-sized beets—mostly because I’m impatient but also because I think they taste better.
Don’t forget you can, and should, use the beet greens. Throw a few in your salad, sauté with garlic and olive oil, or make Southern-style greens. Check out these recipes for inspiration.
Purple Vienna Kohlrabi
My aunt Orah turned me on to kohlrabi when I was a teenager.
Kohlrabi is great in salads and stir fries. I may also try making kohlrabi kimchi.
If you haven’t tried kohlrabi, it’s hard to describe what it tastes like. When eaten raw it’s sort of crunchy and sort of “radishy” without the bite of summer radishes. It mellows out and tastes slightly sweet when it’s cooked.
This is the first year I’ve grown kohlrabi. I sowed the seeds indoors in early March and transplanted the seedlings in early April. Next year, I’ll probably direct sow in early April.
The kohlrabi grew well, didn’t suffer too much bug damage, and I’m going to add it to my list of fall vegetables. I’m sad that this is the last of the spring kohlrabi.
Purple Top Turnips
I feel like people either love or hate turnips. While I’m not planning on launching a “Let’s All Grow and Eat Turnips” campaign, I think they are a great root vegetable for the home gardener.
Why? They are easy to grow and both the leaves and root can be eaten raw or cooked. More importantly, when you grow turnips yourself, you can harvest them when they are young and tender. Makes all the difference in the love or hate debate!
These are the last of the spring turnips. I’ll definitely be growing more this fall.
Want to Learn More?
Check out the following links for some recipes to get started with beets, kohlrabi, and turnips.