Monday 10th May 2010
One of the most challenging tricks at this time of year is to bridge the gap between stored, staple root crops from the farm and the first of the new season European crops. The aim is to seamlessly move from our carrots and potatoes that were planted last year to about a six week spell of new season Italian crops. We then return to the farm for the earliest carrot bunches and first lifting of new potatoes. The consequences of getting this difficult transition wrong can be quite severe. Either we find ourselves wasting many tonnes of roots as they make a final bid to grow, set seed and produce offspring to carry their genes on to future generations or you can fall foul of not planting enough at home to store and use through the early Spring months. The only solution in this predicament is to seek out shipments of carrots and potatoes from Africa, the Middle East and beyond, which I am sure you will agree is far from ideal.
I think we have done fairly well this year but we have succumbed to the perennial problem of sprouting in the potatoes and root growth in the carrots in the last couple of weeks. Sorry if you have been affected by the over eager tubers. I am afraid that a few warm days and a little bit more light immediately