Sunday, 20 July 2008

Opium for the People

block heads

Time to come out of hiding, probably.

We've been choosing the seed for the late sowings. These will, with luck, come into cropping in September and carry us through to late autumn. It worked well last year but like all gardening is a bit of a gamble on the weather - it needs to be warm for quick growth but not so hot that drought kills the fragile newly germinated seedlings. And tempestuous summer storms aren't too great either.

I've chosen beetroot Forono for this sowing. It is a long rooted variety, you can get plenty of slices from it and it grows quickly and strongly. One of my favourites.

Some Chinese Kailaan is a new brassica to us but should suit the season. It's a sort of flowering broccoli and can be repeat cropped. We'll also buy a pack of winter cabbage seedlings as I've left it a bit late to start these from seeds for cropping next January and February.

Another Oriental vegetable is Mustard Spinach, Komatsuna, another form of brassica grown for its thick leaves which can be used in stir fries and soups or salads.

We found some burdock seeds. I love burdock but we've grown it before and it needs really deep soil. I'm not sure we've got anywhere on the farm that's fertile or deep enough for a good crop but we're going to try anyway.

Winter radishes are excellent and quick growing and this year I'll try even harder to keep them properly thinned so that they make big roots and don't bolt to seed.

More salad radishes, repeat sowings of coriander and rocket, lamb's lettuce, early maturing carrots will all contribute to a fine late harvest to which I hope we will be able to add lots of oca and ulluco.

2 comments:

Joker The Lurcher said...

these all sound wonderful! i have a very small garden now so i am going to have to plan the vegetable stuff a bit more carefully. i have great plans for next year!

Catofstripes said...

I think anyone who gardens quickly expands to overfill whatever space they have. Good luck with next year.