Well, it's back to arctic conditions her with bitterly cold wind, rain and a real threat of more snow if the temperature drops by another couple of degrees. It really is very depressing, to the point that I'm seriously considering just producing good kitchen quality crops this year,. rather than attempting grow top quality stuff which may or may not get entered into local shows. Just about everything I've sown so far this year is way behind, probably by almost a month in the case of some of my onion seedlings. At least my Pendle Improved leeks are growing away nicely, but even they are behind by a couple of weeks or more.
The only outside job I've done today, before the rain set in, was to plant out the first of my shallots into the big planter I built a couple of years back. These are bulbs saved from my last years crop which were planted at Christmas. They're OK, but growing rather erratically and are certainly not as good as at this time last year. I've still got quite a few new Hative de Niort and Jermor bulbs in pots in the greenhouse which I'll try and get planted out by Easter. Sorry there's no photo, but the rain started before I had a chance to do it.
I'm not growing as many parsnips as usual this year as we just don't use enough of them to justify it. However, I do like to grow some, so I've set the seed out to chit as usual. The reason for chitting is quite simple. Firstly, with parsnip seed being somewhat fickle when it comes to germination, starting them off in the kitchen on damp kitchen towel means that one can eventually plant only those seeds that have actually sprung into life. Secondly, starting them off this way seems to give stronger plants earlier. Thirdly, it involves little effort other than placing the seed on on the wet paper in a saucer and putting a glass over them . They'll start shooting in a week or so and be planted into compost immediately they show that first sign of life.
Relaxing Christmas ? I think not
18 hours ago