Sunday, October 29, 2017

Preparing the polytunnels for winter

Preparing the outdoor beds for winter starts - if it can be said to start at any particular time - with sowing the leek seedbed in a polytunnel at the beginning of March, and continues throughout the year until about the middle of October, when we harvest our pumpkins/squash and bring them in for storage. Preparing the polytunnels for winter starts in the second half of August with the first tentative sowings of brassica crops (except that this year we sowed polytunnel carrots in July with a view to having them ready by Christmas), but happens mostly in September and October as the summer crops run out of steam and beds are cleared to make way. So far we have planted purple kohl rabi, mixed brassica salads (rocket, mizuna etc..), watercress, headed winter lettuces, parsley, mooli radish (daikon), frisee chicory, radiccio, Chinese cabbage, giant winter spinach, and pak choi. We still have a bit to do in some of our tunnels, but we will be there before November starts to bite.
Frisee endives planted amongst still-productive peppers and French beans.

Jon and Clare planting radiccio between beds of salads and winter brassicas.

Having harvested all our remaining chillies and put them to dry over the rayburn, Jon and Clare are pulling out the plants to make room for planting giant winter spinach.

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