Turnips and Beetroot

Some serious rain over the last couple of days, I know only too well as I was cycling home from work during a lot of it.  One minute nothing, and then floods and the end of the world the next, back to quite a nice calm sunny evening.   It was an interesting ride home, dark enough to have lights on, raining so heavy it was hurting my head and hard to keep my eyes open.   A particular problem as for some parts it was hard to work out where the edge of the road was as it had turned into a giant river.   I wondered how the plot held up.

The next day it was cool but sunny and so I went up early in the morning.  I took the seed tray of radish, swede and cabbage in case I had time to plant out.  I didn’t as it happened, so these will wait to later on in the week.  The netting over the sprouts was a bit slanty but had held up fine, the sprout plants themselves were no longer sticking straight up but seemed to be sorting themselves out.   The green netting have been blown about a bit.  No real damage at all.

The ground was a lot easier to work with, even though the surface was dry again it was moist underneath.  The raspberries that I had been trying to dig out earlier on in the week with little progress due to the concrete nature of the ground was now much easier to work with.   I managed to dig over most of the new bed with just the last quarter remaining.  I raked the new bed over and maybe next week it will be time to plant the potatoes for Christmas.

The recent sowing of salad leaves, beetroot and turnip had all come up and I thought I would follow the way of the ‘no dig gardener’ in how he sows indoors and then just dibs the plants out when they are big enough.   This is what I am doing with the seed tray at home, I thought I could do the same with the little seedlings that I had sown direct too.   For the strongest of the beetroot and turnip seedlings I used the dibbing tool to make some evenly spaced out holes in where beetroot used to be and I carefully dug them up and transplanted them deep in the holes.   I’ll see how well this has worked out, I was careful not to damage the seedlings.  Either way, they are all evening spaced out now and looking pretty, which is the important bit?

The recent rain had made the weeds grow, so a quick hoe about before I went home.   I revisited in the afternoon where I checked all the transplanted seedlings were looking fine.   I took this time to tidy up the strawberries, cutting off runners and planting some of them to fill in gaps.

We are eating at least four beetroot each week, we have enough to keep us going for quite a while


salad leaves, I didn’t transplant but kept as they are. Will hopefully give us something before cold weather comes


beetroot all looking good in the ground


spot the gap in the netting…


soon to be Christmas potatoes, just the last bit to dig over


transplanted turnip on the left, beetroot in the gap on the right


spot the runner beans that have fallen over, we didn’t really have anything from them and so maybe it is time to tidy them up and try again next year


I felt like I needed another bit of time on the plot to finish off the potato bed and plant the swede and radish seedlings, so I went up the next morning.  It was warm and sunny, forecast was for cloud and rain later on.    The seed tray had got pretty wet over the week which has left them saturated but not seemingly suffering.   I made holes in the soil and popped them in, all very much “no dig” style.    Nothing needs watering, the ground is warm, hopefully they will like it there and can battle off slugs and rabbits.

I finished digging the potato bed, no more raspberry canes in that section and it is nice to see it all opened up and prepped for planting.   I have the seed potatoes and so will plant them next week.  I have no great expectations of success, I am sure I should be planting in pots.   I have done it before though, with little (no) prep or looking after, and I got potatoes for Christmas, so you never know.

It is nice to have a tidy looking plot, I did some more hoeing….  I picked up small weed seedlings, I notice none on the bare patch I covered in mushroom compost last week….


once it was raspberries all over the place, now it is cleared and ready for action


swede and radish – hoping for one last radish harvest this year



swede – radish – turnip – beetroot


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