Monday, August 25, 2014

Spring and broad beans

The days are getting noticeably warmer and more glorious now and I have been getting to work preparing for spring.
My sister has been angry at me for letting it go so long without updating that I promised to make a long post with lots of pictures so I will write about some of the springiness that is happening in the garden right now.
After taking a beating by earth mites over the winter my beds of garlic are now starting to look a lot better and are growing furiously.
I planted a couple of beds with later cloves just so I can see just how late I can put them in and still produce decent bulbs.

I usually plant in Feb and then let them stay dormant till they start growing in May but the beds I planted a month ago are really coming along now.

My pots of oca tubers are starting to shoot so that is the next job. I have a few beds ready for them, I think I will plant 6 or 7 beds of them this year.

I am impatient to see how my new, seed grown tubers fare. It will be great to be able to offer some new varieties.

I have been putting out straw everywhere to feed the soil and lock in moisture for summer, especially as this month has been so dry and I am worried about getting an early summer.

Unfortunately the straw had a lot of wheat seed still in it so the beds are getting green with new shoots after the bit of rain we have had. That will keep me busy later but I don't mind wheat, it is easy to pull out and control.

My broad beans are powering away now with the warmer weather. Some even have set pods on them already. I am loving the look of the red flowered ones which I am growing for the first time.
I have 4 varieties of broad beans this year. Aquadulce, Gippsland Giant, Crimson Flowered, and Black Seeded.

One of the red flowered ones is producing pretty pink flowers instead of red. I will save the seed and grow them again.

 Last year I didn't clean up the spent broad beans after I pulled up the old plants and many of those plants still had a few immature pods on them. Now I have heaps of self seeded plants growing all over the place, they are pretty thick in places.

I know I should pull them up and dig them into the beds but I so hate pulling up edible plants so they will sit around being a nuisance, getting in the way. I don't know what I am going to do with all the beans, sigh. I still have kgs of dried beans hanging around from last season. Hmmm, maybe I will just close my eyes and pull them up, after all, I don't want so many Aquadulce anyway.

I did tell my sister I would add some humour into my post when she insisted but I just can't find too much that is funny about broad beans, and I am not a funny person anyway, sorry sis :)

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