3 July 2021

Oooo it’s cold and regardless of this, the mighty cauliflower keeps growing and broccoli heads up – the wonder of nature! I got the varieties of these brassicas right this year and we have good produce ready for the table. ‘All Year Round’ cauliflower and ‘Marathon’ heading broccoli.

Remember to break the leaves closest to the head of the cauliflower over it as it sizes up – this keeps it nice and white.

Our garlic is coming along nicely.

I’m giving it its first application of neem oil, in an attempt to head off the rust which plagued our crop last year. I had to put the bottle in a bowl of hot water to liquefy the oil due to the cold.

Also I’m keeping up with our monthly application of liquid seaweed on everything – full of nutrients and it conditions the soil as well.

I finally took out the silverbeet that was still producing reasonably well from the summer long-term leafy green bed and sowed a green cover crop. The new parsley is still establishing itself in the new bed, so these old guys get to stay on a bit longer.

I just raked the soil over before sowing and trust in nature to do the rest.

It may seem very early, but we’re sowing the first lettuce seeds this month. I’m choosing the hardier variety of Cos to start with. Canasta is another one that handles a bit of chill.

Here are the survivors of our asparagus planting last year. Only about a third of what I planted survived (the bigger plants you can see are self-seeded violas which aren’t doing any harm). It was definitely too late in the season when they went in last year, so I’m pleased that these few pushed through.

At the end of this month, I’ll transplant some of them to space them out a bit more evenly and give them a trim. I’m not expecting them to produce any spears this year, especially the ones that will get transplanted, but next year we should be away.

From the beginning of this month I’m starting to weigh the produce I bring in from the garden. I remember in Michelle Obama’s ‘Becoming’ they weighed the produce that came out of her White House garden and the latest NZ Gardener e-zine has an article on expected yield from different fruit trees and estimates how much that could save you.

And lastly, the first of our passionfruit has ripened. Four more still on the vine colouring up!

Keep warm and rest up for the busy spring months ahead.

From Jan, Rob and the Team at OEG!

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