Some say that March is Missouri's snowiest month. As we prepare for another round of snow, potentially 8 inches, and ice, potentially crippling, the days of setting out my kale and lettuce seeds seem like months away. I've always heard that lettuce seeds need to be in the ground around St. Patrick's Day, 16 days from now. My compost heap is frozen, and I haven't even seen the first green tips of daffodils yet, so we must have some seriously different weather if the St. Patrick's Day lettuce planting shall commence.
Despite the winter weather, my thoughts have turned to my garden. I lost the battle with cabbage whites last year and never harvested a single stitch of kale or broccoli. I wasn't rigorous enough with my floating row covers, I guess, but neither were my neighbors. None of our gardens produced any kale last spring. I eat kale daily, especially the Russian Red variety I grow which only requires a quick saute in wine, olive oil and garlic. It is my mission to successfully grow kale and broccoli this year as I have every year except 2013.
Also slated to go in the ground in late March is this slow-bolting cilantro that produces well into June, and potentially arugula if I don't instinctively plant every inch of my raised beds in kale, broccoli, and cilantro. There's always plenty of arugula and other loose leaf lettuces at the farmer's market, so I may just be a kale farmer this year.