Veg of the Month and Other Matters

 

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Purple Sprouting Broccoli 

A very hardy plant that provides you with fresh greens when little else is available. First referred to in 1724 by the curator of the Apothecaries’ Garden at Chelsea as the “Italian asparagus”, purple sprouting broccoli is a worthy addition to the Scottish allotment. Patience is necessary, planted in mid-summer it is only in early spring the following year that the purple shoots appear.

1) Sow in early April in a tray of compost. 2)Let seeds germinate in the greenhouse or indoors. 3) Put the seedlings in a pot when the first true leaves appear. 4) Plant out the young plants in the ground in May
5) Plant them firmly 12/15” apart with 24” between rows 6) Add pelleted chicken manure  or fish, blood & bone (as advised on packs). 7) Put netting over the plants to save them from bird and butterfly attack. Start cutting the spears when they appear in the spring.

The ABC of Vegetables published by the Ministry of Food in 1948 recommends a steam-boil method of cooking with just enough salted water to prevent burning. After 10-15 minutes your patience will be rewarded. A white or cheese sauce is another possibility, but, with just a sprinkling of salt and a knob of butter this is a tasty early spring dish. (from Christine Forde and Denis Barrett)

Other Matters

1     On March 7th we had a very interesting talk packed with the latest ideas about how best to care for your soil and ensure its productivity. Jan’s input sparked a lot of useful discussion.  You will find the Handouts from Jan on the Events page in the Calendar for 2019.

2      The draft minutes of the business meeting that followed are on the Resources page as is Sandy’s latest report.

3       New site contacts for Germiston and Berridale have been added to the Table of Sites on the Sites page.

4        An early date for your diary – next season’s Potato Day will take place on Sunday Feb 23rd at the Reidvale Community Centre.

5       Don’t forget we’re looking for you to give us your nominations for Veg of the Month for April!

 

 

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