Monday, November 14

Going underground

We only managed one visit to the plot which was on Sunday so we only just managed a harvest to report. 
Root crops are the main feature of the latest harvest. We leave the roots in the ground until we need them as we have found that they store better this way.
When the chance of an extended cold snap approaches we will cover the roots with a mulch to offer some protection but most winters the crops manage to survive.

On our plot the root crops come in irregular shapes. They are the epitome of wonkiness but this does not diminish their taste.

The parsnips are the first of the season to be harvested and we will be happy if the rest are as large as these. Germination of the first sowing was very patchy and so more seeds were sown in the gaps so maybe we can expect some variability in size.

The cauliflower head wasn't the same pristine white as the ones harvested previously. I don't expect it enjoyed the flurry of snow that we were treated to on Wednesday. November is far too early for snow, what are the weather elves thinking? The cauliflower is destined for a vegetable curry so the head wouldn't have stayed white for long anyway.

Just as we were heading home I decided to check on the alpine strawberries and was rewarded with a few berries to add to our fruit salad.
Even the large strawberries are making a valiant effort to produce fruit.
Some are even trying to ripen. As soon as they spot a slight tinge of redness the creatures make a move on the fruit. I don't imagine any fruit that managed to avoid being nibbled would be of a standard worth picking but you have to admire the plant's determination.

The annual flowers have been battered into submission but I still managed to pick some flowers for the house.
This time of year wouldn't be the same without chrysanthemums. Once the tomatoes had finished flowering in the plot greenhouse, I dug up the chrysanthemums that had been planted out on the plot over summer. These were replanted in crates and replaced the tomatoes.
The plants were originally bought as potmums but once they had finished flowering they were planted into larger pots where they soon revert to more substantial plants. Last year's potmums were popped into the garden greenhouse. The ones in this greenhouse actually produced most of the flowers for the above vase. I'll be on the lookout for more colours when we visit the supermarket or garden centre.

Today I am linking to Harvest Monday over at Dave's blog  Our Happy Acres

26 comments:

  1. You still have a lot of carrots! --lucky you. I"m coming to the end of mine soon--I hope to have the last of them for Thanksgiving in a couple weeks. That's far longer than I normally have them, though-so I'm grateful for that.
    Your mums are gorgeous!

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    1. We tend not to dig our carrots earlier, Sue as we have plenty of other vegetables earlier in the year.

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  2. We keep our beetroot, parsnips and swede in the ground until we need them too, Sue. I think it is much easier. I don't have much luck with carrots, they always get attacked by root fly, although last year I grew some in a deep container and kept them there through the winter. We had some lovely carrots in the spring with no sign of root fly.

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    1. As soon as we sow the carrot seeds we cover with enviromesh, Margaret. The only time we uncover is to do a bit of weeding when I just raise the mesh a little at a time. As we grow though weed control fabric not much weeding is required. The mesh has been removed now as the carrot fly are not active.

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  3. Mick's uncle grows lots of chrysanthemums but he knows my favourite is a variety called Emma Lou, such a striking yellow flower and they look fabulous in a vase, so he often just cuts me a bunch of that one variety. I envy you your parsnips. Yum yum.

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    1. I remember you mentioning Mick's uncle grew them, Jo. He disbuds and grows larger flowers doesn't he? I just let ours produce sprays.

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  4. Your carrot greens certainly look lush! And the flowers are beautiful despite being battered. I wish I could leave my roots in the ground but our winters get too cold, though I do leave them as long as I can.

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    1. One advantage of our climate, Dave. The chrysanthemums were lucky and were taken indoors before the worst of the weather.

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    2. I like your idea of planting out the pot mums and then bringing them under cover for the Winter... thank you for the tip!
      Kathy

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    3. It's such a shame that many people buy them just as pot plants and then throw them away, Kathy this way they live for years.

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  5. Same story for my parsnips this year, really poor germination, but mine are still month away from being large enough to harvest. The chrysanthemums look fabulous, not battered at all.

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    1. The large 'two legged' parsnip was large enough to provide vegetables for us for three or four meals combined with the carrots, Michelle but they won't all be as big. The chrysanthemums were cosily ensconced inside the greenhouse.

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  6. A great batch of root veggies! And how nice that you can bring the mums into the greenhouse pots for extra keeping!

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    1. We only just got the flowers inside in time, Susie.

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  7. The snow didn't reach us here in the South, though we had a couple of frosts. I'm also in favour of leaving the root crops in the ground until you need them: if they are in the fridge you sometimes feel obliged to use them up quickly, when it's not really necessary. My Winter crops are poor this year (apart from the Parsnips) - especially the Brussels Sprouts, which are still tiny, as are my Leeks.

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    1. I don't think our leeks as big as usual, but I haven't checked on the sprouts see it

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  8. Snow in November always seems too early. Himself spotted in on the tops near Windermere when he went to shut our caravan up at the weekend. We've only had one sharp frost so far at home but then we're very near to the Mersey estuary which has a warming effect. Those chrysanths are such fabulous rich colours Sue.

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    1. I love the colour range of chrysanthemums, Anna. I am really on the lookout for a really nice bronze coloured one.

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  9. Your chrysanthemums look very healthy Sue. I think they could winter well in your greenhouse. My plants and potted flowers were winterized, all veggies are in a freeze or were canned.

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    1. We spent yesterday taking parts into the greenhouse for winter, Nadezda it's just a case now of keeping the chrysanthemums a little bit watered but not too much

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  10. Wow - strawberries in November - what a treat! I don't think I've ever noticed that you use Rubbermaid bins in your greenhouse - what a great idea! They are much roomier than any pot that you could purchase for the same price & I'm sure they last quite a long time in the protection of the greenhouse.

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    1. We are using the bins for the chrysanthemums because they were provided by the council for our recycling before we were given proper recycling bins, Margaret. So in a sense we have recycled the recycling bins.

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  11. The root vegetables look so good! It doesn't look like cold weather over there! ;)

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    1. Some days are colder than others, Malar. It's not too bad when the sun manages to shine but when it is gloomy and windy it is not very pleasant at all.

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