March

Monday 10th May 2010

When do vegetables stop being vegetative and get sexual? What makes them do it? And what does that mean for the veg in your boxes? Understanding, predicting and manipulating vernalization, the trigger to plant sexuality, vexes us considerably. It can be caused by stress, particularly drought or unexpected cold, but in the normal run of a plant... continued

Monday 10th May 2010

After the coldest March on record we hope that there are no more heavy frosts in the pipeline as we head into April. The daffodils are reluctantly making their way into the world but there are no signs of flowers yet! Parsnips, leeks, peas, beans, onions and garlic are all safely in the ground. Stan will plant the rest of... continued

Monday 10th May 2010

Stan grows about 60 acres of vegetables for the boxes on Yaxley fen. The vast, flat and unique landscape of the fens has a fascinating history. East Anglia was once connected to mainland Europe by dry land, covered in primary forests. At the end of the ice age the forests were flooded, killing plants and trees. These fell and swampy conditions... continued

Monday 10th May 2010

Now we are well into March we are approaching the end of the stored UK crop of potatoes. We don't want to push the crop too far as the potatoes inevitably will get to a point where they start to soften and sprout as they make a last bid to regenerate. Our plans for the domestic crop should take us through... continued

Monday 10th May 2010

I was asked by a child on one of our farm walks last year to describe the difference between a swede and a turnip. Without wanting to sink into any jokes about the England football manager team I found myself stumped. Characteristically the turnip is a smaller, whiter fleshed and not quite so sweet member of the brassica family but... continued

Monday 10th May 2010

The cold snap that we have experienced blowing in from the North Sea has mixed blessings for us. The lettuce and broad beans are all covered with a thin layer of fleece that offers some protection from the elements. But Stan has never grown lettuce on the peaty land in Yaxley before, so the impact of night temperatures that drop... continued

Monday 10th May 2010

The first blossom is out on the fruit trees and the grass has suddenly started growing as if it somehow knew there was time to be made up. The dairy cows are now outside by day getting their first taste of the real stuff for five months. After a Winter of chewing their way through about eight tonnes of silage... continued