Growing Veggies 2
Sowing, growing, harvesting, cooking and eating various foodplants with our children teaches them about botany, nature, practical horticulture, where food comes from and what it tastes like cooked in various ways.
The broad beans (photo below - sown by our children before Christmas) are up and flowering, our radishes are fattening and our carrots have all germinated (both sown 1 month ago), so today we sowed more vegetable seeds - beetroot, perpetual spinach and butternut squash - and some giant sunflower seeds. The photo above shows our children carefully poking beetroot seeds individually into potting compost filled modules - a module is a tray of small pots. The module trays + seeds were watered, put into clear plastic bags to stop them drying out, and placed on a warm windowsill indoors. We'll watch the trays closely over the next few days and weeks, and make sure to remove the plastic bags as soon as the seeds germinate. Then we'll place the trays outside in a protected spot to harden off the seedlings (to 'harden off' means to gently acclimatise the young tender seedlings to the harsher conditions outside - you have to do this gently or their growth will be checked) and grow them on to form young plants. Sowing into modules and germinating in the warmth will give our plants the best start - much better than sowing directly into cold ground (even colder and dryer than usual this year).
Later, when the small plants have formed 3 or 4 true leaves, we'll plant the beetroot and spinach out in our raised beds after the broad beans have been cropped, the butternut squashes in some metal dustbins filled with compost, and the sunflowers into the open ground. We'll keep them watered and fed, and look forward to beetroot, spinach and broad beans to cook and eat later this term, and butternut squashes after the summer break.
Posted by Tony Danford on 25 April 2017
Category: Nursery Blog