Sunday, 2 November 2014

November 2014.

Its November and we are nearly at the end of spring.  How quickly time passes these days!   The weather has been wet and windy with occasional brilliantly warm, windless, sunny days around 30 deg C.

These broad beans are being harvested and will be cut down leaving their roots in the soil.  The roots carry nodules full of beneficial nitrogenous compounds which the next crop can use as food.  I like to leave the soil undisturbed so it retains its great structure.  

Soil preparation follows immediately for the next crop and climbing beans will be sown there in about 3 weeks.

This is the Ecobed I have devoted to heavy feeders this year and I have almost finished harvesting the season's first crop.   Most of the soil has been prepared for the next crop and three rows of new seedlings have already been planted.

I have always had problems growing brassicas and lettuce in summer because of pests and a tendency for them to bolt in intense summer sunshine.  The protection of the exclusion netting and an extra layer of shadecloth covering the top of the pest exclusion frame will keep these pests and the sun under control.

The heavy duty shadecloth has been in place for several weeks now, and I notice the lettuce and cabbage (in particular) are not wilting when we do get a hot sunny day.

I have had a great fruit set on my espaliered apples this year and in 2 or 3 weeks I will be thinning them back to one apple per fruiting spur.  The glossy look of the apple leaves is helped by regular sprays of aerated compost tea.