Update for 2004.
Well, 2003 proved to be a good year. Much was grown, and some vegetables didn't do to well (like carrots). In preparation for 2004, the new plot has been dug over many times, and manure has been added at least twice, then dug in. All we have to do now is wait for the weather to get better, then we can start planting seeds. This will probably begin in late March/early April, subject to weather conditions.
The idea this year is to use the newer of the two plots to grow potatoes, runner beans, and peas in. This will help break up the clods of soil better, as the older plot now has nice, fine soil, thanks primarily to two years of growing potatoes, but also lots of digging. The older plot will hopefully be used for all the other vegetables we intend to grow, including carrots (we're back to AUTUMN KING variety this year, as they've proved best), parsnips, beetroot and many others.
As you can imagine, it looks pretty bleak on the plots at the moment (it is only January as this paragraph is written), but the older plot does have 4 rows of onions growing in it. These won't be ready for lifting for quite some time, but there are still other things to be done. Weeds are now becoming a problem, especially on the newer plot (it was left overgrown for quite some time, and the amount of weeds in it is quite amazing)
Now into the end of April, and we've got some vegetables making an appearance. Nearly 3 weeks ago, everything was sown into the ground. All the growing area was marked off (mainly so our son and his friends didn't walk over it), and left. A few early morning frosts caused a bit of a panic, but it seems this panic was over nothing, as everything appears to have started to grow. We've planted mainly carrots this year (5 rows), but also -
1 row of parsnips (the Student variety)
1 row of beetroot
1 row of experimental PURPLE SKINNED carrots
1 row of turnip (Snowball variety)
1 row of spring cabbage
my sons sunflowers (he got bored with vegetables, so sunflowers seemed the best idea for him to grow)
Lettuce (all year round variety)
1 row of Leeks (not sure of the variety)
Planting of the carrots was evened out over a 5 week period, so they didn't all come up at once. All the rest was planted within the first two weeks of the first row of carrots going in.
LATER IN THE YEAR...
Now a lot later in the year (November, in fact) - Almost all the vegetables, except the parsnips and turnips, have now been lifted. Another good year has gone by. So far we've grown -
Enough potatoes to fill 3 1/2 sacks of potatoes
1 carrier bags of runners beans
1 carrier bag of peas
lots of carrots (more than enough to see us into next year)
1 LEEK (out of 12 planted - still, you learn by trial and error)
6 cabbages (of which the biggest was about 3 foot in diameter and the head was the size of a football)
No purple skinned carrots - these succumbed to that pest Carrot Fly.
Lots of lettuce (couldn't give it away quick enough - ended up throwing a lot of it)
Enough beetroot to keep the wife going for a while
Would you believe it... My son is in the local magazine for this area after growing this monster. See below.
Click on the photo for a larger image.
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