Saturday, May 26, 2018

13 Aug

Vegetable Patch Diaries…

This month your veg plot will be flourishing. August is all about extending your vegetable harvest by sowing more! Keep the harvests coming by watering, feeding and weeding regularly. If you have the time and space start thinking about repeat sowing Salad, Spring Onion and Kale.

  • Salad – Sow salads little and often. Some varities are suitable for late crops and you can expect to be harvesting salad leaves within 30 days.
  • Spring Onion – You may have already harvested some but you can still plant seeds now for a spring crop. Hardy varities are perfect for planting this time of year, expect to start harvesting from march.
  • Kale – This hardy vegetable can be perfect as either baby salad leaves in the summer or as greens when matured over winter.

There’s nothing like eating your own fresh produce at the end of a long summer. From juicy tomatoes to cooling cucumbers, keep picking the vegetables below so they keep cropping!

  • Cucumbers are a wonderfully prolific vegetable that needs to be picked when the fruits are small to encourage more to develop. Powdery mildew can be a problem this time of year, cut off any infected leaves to stop it spreading.
  • Carrots can be picked at any time but definitely taste best when they are young. Feed carrots with a low nitrogen fertiliser once a week for best results.
  • Peppers must be harvested regularly to encourage more growth. Feed with tomato fertiliser and check for signs of powdery mildew, peppers are prone to it this time of year. Always remove of any infected plants and don’t put them  in the compost!

It’s not all just about planting and harvesting, to get good crops from your vegetable patch, there are a few jobs you should complete this August – your harvests will be bigger and better!

1. Water and feed! Make both of these jobs part of your daily routine. Don’t wait until they start to wilt before watering frequently, keep ahead and you’ll have the best crops. Also keep an eye on any pests and diseases that might be attacking your plants.

2. Slugs and snails have had a good year, which isn’t great for us! Slugs and snails can ruin young plants so use barrier methods such as beer jars and grit to combat them.

3. Encourage new growth by picking salad leaves off when they turn leathery and compost the plants. Salad leaves grow brilliantly, you’ll have an abundance in no time. 

4. Protect radishes, oriental mustards and turnips from flea beetle, beans from blackfly and broccoli from caterpillars. You’ll never fully be able to prevent pests attacking your plants but keeping an eye out is a good start.

5. Let flowers like chives and dill set seed, collect to sow them next year. Seeds are a fantastic way of saving money, dry them out and label them to make sure you know what you’re planting next season!


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