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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Artichokes, Turmeric, Ginger, Horseradish and Frost

Many years ago when Artichokes were planted we had mixed results and gave up after a couple of years. Then two years ago inspiration arrived and a new idea tried i.e. planting them in large pots or recycled 200 litre drum halves.  One of the other tricks to a good crop was planting out in July rather than the usual September. These combined ideas resulted in a huge success and the ideas was reused every year.

Today was the day for this task. All the  spare drums were emptied and then each drum refilled with a mix of the old soil and fresh compost. This consumed the entire contents of one of the compost bins. No wonder there is always a fresh compost being built at HHF. The place absorbs compost in barrow loads.

There is a mix of Artichoke plants this year. There are some purple tinged ones grown from seed called Violette  and a few plants divided from last years plants, also Violette which had produced offshoots. Jean's research also uncovered that the better variety for this climate was Green Globe. These were purchased a couple of weeks ago. Jean was careful to select pots that contained more than one seedling which resulted in paying for three and having 7 to plant.

Artichoke Pots

Empty Again

With that task successfully completed it was onto another exciting anticipation. The harvesting of Turmeric. Having planted two pots this time there was a mass of juicy roots to collect. A very satisfactory yield.


Drying Harvest

Ginger doesn't grow as well (or the formula for success hasn't been employed - yet). Anyway the first yield was a bit low but better than previous years which was nil.


The  Horseradish pot was up ended to find a harvest of zilch. There were a few decayed strands of root. It seems something went wrong. Not knowing the cause all that can be done is purchase another plant and start again. A disappointment as fresh Horseradish sauce is so good on smoked Salmon.

There was our first frost of the year. Just barely visible on the new compost bin but easily felt underfoot. You know that slightly crunchy but slippery feel as you walk.

First Frost
And still there was time to sit with a cup of tea (no Scones, it's a fast day) and read a chapter or two from a current book with the Winter Sun warming our backs. This is the good life.

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