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Rambling #162 (late April)

Rachel on the potato planter

As you might have expected, we were somewhat behind in getting started this year.  But the seemingly endless heavy rain relented and we were able to start spreading compost and cultivating.  We now have a good chunk of the onion sets planted, carrots sown and the spuds should go in this week.  The polytunnel crop plan is thankfully free of rain restraints, but we do have to keep an eye on the night-time temperatures as plants like the French climbing beans are ready to go in but the forecast is showing night-time temperatures only just above freezing and they won't like that!

You should all get a bunch of radish over the next couple weeks.  They do tend to wilt quite quickly, but we don't want to put them in plastic bags.  If you put them in a bowl of water it should restore them somewhat and will stop them dehydrating any further.

Long term customers  will know that we are about to enter the 'Hungry Gap' period when the winter and spring crops start to run out before the new season crops are not ready for harvest, or even in the ground yet! We will be more reliant on our organic wholesalers in this period, and as there are very few  large glasshouse growers in the uk, it will inevitably mean a higher percentage of imported produce.  Also, any salads like tomatoes and cucumbers from the UK will have been produced using artificial light and heat making it expensive and environmentally questionable. It is a dilemma we wrestle with every year.  There is no obvious answer so we make the best choices we can but it is always a bit of a compromise. Rest assured we are working hard to get all the veg in the ground so we can dig it out again as soon as possible!

Finally, as we are a 'real' living wage employer, (with the rate set independently), we inevitably need to put up our prices.

Our new prices will take effect from the start of May.

Thanks for continuing to support small-scale, local horticulture. Lots of experts say it's the way we should be feeding the world, but supply and demand is still woefully inadequate, especially in this country!


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