Sunday, 23 November 2008

On Sprouts Pt ii

I'm taking you under the canopy into the surprisingly light and airy world of the sprout.
The average sprout has a very architectural air about it. Look at the formality of the stems. The elegant ellipse markings before the leaf. Beautiful form and function.
Any old leave can be described as architectural. Sprout leaves have water features!

I love the way that the light is reflected around this quite graceful plant.
Look at the formation of the actual sprouts. You can see where I've removed the lower leaver popping out like tiny cabbages on an elegant helix production line.
You can see how firm the sprouts are. I did make sure that the ground here was nice and firm before I planted. If the ground is soft for Brassicas you end up with soft leafy badly formed sprouts that rot. Also this is a very to heavy plant with big spoon shape leaves that catch the wind. If the ground is not firm the sprouts will not last the Autumn.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

On Sprouts Part i

The humble sprout. The least sexy most berated and even hated of all veg. If the sprout was an animal it would be a slug or a wasp.

Like the parsnip, the sprout suffers from early onset vegetable hatred. Everyone went off parsnips when they left a roast potato on the plate so that it could be eaten last, only to discover it was a roasted parsnip. Parsnips are nice but they ain't no roast potato.

Sprouts get a bad rep because they are the least enjoyable part of the world’s most enjoyable meal.

Whilst I'd be the first to admit that Christmas in this country has gotten way out of hand, nothing is greater than the traditional Christmas dinner. Even the vegetarian option is a wonder to behold. The sprout has made its name as the pantomime villain of the Christmas spread. Kids from early ages are expected to eat them when to the Child's palate your average sprout is basically poison.

Perhaps, like alcohol, we should not let children have some veg until they are older. No honey these are Daddy's vegetables. Eat your carrots. You can have sprouts when you are older. After all sprouts taste better than beer does.

Monday, 17 November 2008

Silly Bastard Trenching

Please! stay with me. I'm not being rude.

There is a technique called Bastard Trenching. (see capital letters. Noun.) It's probably some down home countryside phrase. In the same way that Asparagus is called "Sparrow Grass" in Norwich.
On a previous post I got all excited about my double digging and adding organic matter to the soil.

Well, there's a website ,dear reader, that I regularly visit which is far more knowledgeable about vegetables than my happy little site. I've been advised by people on that site that what I've been doing is not double digging. Not even a little bit.

I fear I've lead you astray dear reader and for that I can only apologise.

Some calcification is required. Double digging involves digging a trench twice the depth of your spade head. That's the double bit I guess. Then you dig another double trench next to the first trench and fill the first trench.....You know what ? Here's a picture.

Then there's Bastard Trenching. This involves digging the first trench to a depth of one spit then just forking over the soil the bottom of the trench to aid drainage, let air in and help roots go down deeper etc. You then dig another trench and empty the contents of that trench into the first and so on.

What I was doing was none of these things. Still at least I gave clear instructions so that those that know, were able to set me straight.

But I did your digging.

So, technicalities aside, if you like my style of digging and feel like adopting it for your own plot then I have provided a suitable hybrid name in the above title. Nothing flash or self titled. It's just so that when someone asks, you can tell them what you're up to. I dare you!

Friday, 14 November 2008

The Red hot chilli pepper experiment

Get a group of burned out surfers, teach them a few chords and find them a decent drummer. Add one catchy song that they can dine out on for a decade and turn your back.

Miraculously a very ordinary Californian funk band become the biggest flipping band in the world. Huh!

As the late, great Bill Hicks used to say... "I missed THAT meeting". **

Lets hope that I have as much success with my chilli plants.

Throw away your Television but not your chilli plants. The word in the green house is that we don't need to grow our plants from seed every year. With a little TLC, a side order of bubble wrap and stiff pruning we can have home grown red hot chilli peppers in early summer.

Lets give it a shot.

first pics to follow.

**Actually he's kind of rude and angry so please be careful. But if you must, then go visit youtube.