… and all things nice!
We had leftover rice from dinner last night that we put out for a treat for the girls this morning. When we first got this brood they quite timid, but they seem to recognise us more and more each day as the purveyors of fine food 😀
The garden has gone through another transformation. We harvested over 30 ears of corn and have processed them by blanching and freezing, as we did with the soybeans. Unfortunately we left the soybeans a bit too long and they had gone past the ‘treat’ stage of being eaten as edamame, but I am sure they will find their way into future soups or stews.
Being early Autumn its time to get the brassicas in. To say that we have had little success with this vegetable group is an understatement. They seem to be endlessly plagued by moths, caterpillars and other stressors, so we are preparing to set ourselves up for success—Chris is going to build a mesh cloche to help nurture and protect the young plants.
We now have three ‘generations’ of plants in the soil. The oldest includes the sunflowers, spring onions, chilli bushes, celery and beetroot. Over the last month or so Chris has added tomatoes, daikon radishes, brown and white onions, leeks, rocket, peas, beans, coriander and carrots. Yesterday he prepared beds for and planted cauliflower, broccoli, kale, burkale, lettuce and celeriac: some as seedlings and some as seeds.
The aquaponics system has been relieved of a number of very vigorous galangal plants, that while lush and beautifully green up top, they had a limited rhizome growth, and we suspect were pulling a lot of potassium out of the system. The growbeds seem to be a good nursery for these types of plants with ginger and turmeric also thriving, so the plan is to start them here, and once vigorous, plant them out into tubs of soil.
The slightly cooler weather (and I mean slightly) has seen better growth with the lettuces in the NFT rails—with less tendency to bolt and go straight to seed. The growbeds have been stripped back: we took out all of the tomatoes and the triffid-like sage plants allowing lots of room for strawberries, silver beet, parsley, tomatoes and a new find: perennial coriander. When the leeks and celeriac germinate in the soil garden, we will transplant some over into the grow beds to see how things develop.
Hi – At hort school I was told that bolting of lettuces and other crops – but mainly lettuces – was primarily caused by planting them out of normal high growth seasons – especially because of daily length / light exposure. In other words Spring and summer in temperate areas. However, in the tropics / sub tropics, other factors also apply, including heat and day length. The main trick is to grow them quickly, with plenty of N. Here’s a couple of sites you might be interested in reading: