Friday, November 11, 2016

Chinese toon tree and more

I am exhausted after nearly a week of hard work from dawn till dark. Since planting has been so late everything is having to go in at the same time. I am busy planting, weeding, digging and laying out new drip tube to extend my area under irrigation. The weather has been perfect and to top it off we are due to get a good amount of rain again on Sunday which will be perfect timing. It will wash the new lime into the newly dug beds.

 Last year I planted three Toona sinensis (Cedrela sinensis) trees from seed, also known as Chinese toon.
I know these can be aggressive suckering trees I will try to keep them under control with regular harvesting of the new shoots which are delicious.

The shoots are often used in Asian dishes, especially with eggs. Although websites say they taste like onion I don't find that. I think they have their own taste which is incomparable to anything else. I really enjoy nipping off a young leaf or two as I walk past to nibble on. The trees are still too young to take whole shoots but they should be bushy enough next spring if I trim them to force branching.

I know it is a very poor photo but this is a row of young Island Gems lettuce from Wild Garden Seed. So far I am very impressed with the colours and shape. These are a small, single serve crisphead lettuce that I think will become very popular, especially with people like me who are sick of large lettuces going off in the fridge when you can't eat them all in time.

I am really looking forward to eating some of these. So far the rabbits are leaving them alone so I should have a fair pick to choose those I want to save seed from.

My poor, poor garlic. When I planted them I was sure I was going to have a great harvest, but that was before all the wet where I couldn't weed them. The beds are totally covered in weeds and I can't do anything about it.

At least it looks like I will get enough to plant the same number of beds again next season, even though the bulbs will be small and with fewer cloves.

They are struggling valiantly and some are even strong enough to send up scapes.

They should be ready to harvest in about three weeks.

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