This time of year can be a low point for garden vegetables: the winter stores are used up and early spring planting yet to mature. However, with careful planning you can have a wide variety of produce fresh from the garden throughout ‘the lean month’…
- Potatoes – we still have many spuds stored from last summer – infact so many we have started giving them away.
- Onions – the last of our stored onions ran out in the first week of the month. It seems a shame to start buying them again. (Note to self: plant more onions this year)
From the Greenhouse
The greenhouse is unheated throughout the winter so all our plants spent a good deal of time sub-zero. However, the glass takes the edge off the weather and many of the crops remained almost perfect
- Lettuce – we had Winter Density, Arctic King and iceberg growing over winter.
- Land cress – like watercress, a good addition to salads.
- Wild rocket – good in salads, more peppery than salad rocket.
- Spinach – in perfect condition!
- Mangetout – These have grown slowly over the winter but have given us a very early crop.
In the Ground
The following crops remained perfect left in the ground over the recent hard winter, and came through days of snow and hard frosts:
- Carrots – I am always amazed at how well carrots survive winter!
- Leeks – these are hardy plants and survive severe weather.
- Parsnips – pulled the last of the parsnips and made a great soup with them.
Several winter Brassica are ready now, but the winter cauliflowers are yet to come:
- White sprouting broccoli – sprouted just a few days ahead of the purple broccoli. Small, succulent spears.
- Purple sprouting broccoli – Larger spears, with some plants still to sprout.
- Purple curly kale – This was a surprise. I had left the stems over winter having picked all the leaves off in the autumn, but they have sprouted like the broccoli – shoots with little flower buds on the end – very tender, but tasting of kale!