Monday, May 18, 2015

Oca seedling update and more

My this years oca seedlings have been an eye opener. You may recall that this time I pricked each seedling into separate 10cm pots then buried those pots in the ground in one of the beds.
For some reason they really liked this and grew to the size of mature plants, and I only lost two to stem rot. Last year was the first year I had tried to grow them from seed and I kept them in pots in my shadehouse, and they only grew small and produced microtubers. They are all in a separate bed this year.
I am thinking that perhaps I am not planting my oca tubers in soil that is fertile enough for them and that is why this years seedlings are doing so well in their potting mix with added long lasting fertiliser.

Because they are in small pots I am not expecting the tubers to be big but they are numerous and the plants are heaving themselves out of their pots with the amount of tubers developing. I am very pleased.

Unlike my other beds of oca these seedlings are not showing signs of dying down yet and maybe the soil or growing conditions are causing that. I am getting impatient but I know that the longer they are growing the more tubers they will produce.

Next spring I will seriously look at experimenting more with different soils, fertility and growing conditions. It seems that I still have a lot to learn.

 I have put in some 'Novella' peas which are a semi-leafless shelling pea. They only produce some leaves up the stem and rely on their large tendrils for their energy instead.
I have some problems with low germination and also very slow germination and I don't know whether it is a bad batch of seeds or they are generally difficult.
I only got 24 plants up in this bed. They are just beginning to flower now.

My saffron bulbs are shooting out of the ground now. The way they are multiplying I might even have enough to fill a bed next year.

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