Monday, February 20, 2017

Heat tolerant oca and bush snake beans

I have a problem. After my successful open weekend followed by two markets I have just about run out of seed. I know it is a good position to be in but I am embarrassed by the thought that I will have to buy in seed to put in packets for the markets in the next couple of months. The trouble is that the seed I buy in will be the sort of seed my customers can buy on heritage seed seller websites and nothing really different like what they are used to seeing on my stall. Oh well, there is not much I can do about it.
I will definitely have to plan better in the future.

 My bush snake beans are bearing very well. I have isolated ten plants for fresh picking so I can measure just how much my customers should be able to harvest all season per square metre.

So far I have picked a kilo off those few plants since they started flowering. It may not sound like much but they are small plants and you don't need many beans for a meal so they are doing well. I am very interested in what the total amount of green beans off them will add up to at the end.

I am finally seeing a few more heat tolerant oca plants this year. It has helped that the summer has gone back to normal and we are not getting weeks on end of scorching temps.

If I can select a couple of heat tolerant ones each year that produce well it won't be long till people will be able to plant a few colours in their gardens outside with few worries. I think I will plant a lot more seeds next spring and plant them all without shadecloth and see just how many I can get to grow.

I have found that to beat the stem rot that oca is prone to in hot weather you have to mulch them deeply with straw. It keeps them dormant for a bit longer in spring but that is a good thing as the later you plant them in spring the healthier the plants tend to be.

With the total failure of my ulluco crop I will be concentrating more on oca probably.


  1. Good luck with the oca. I'm sorry to hear about the ulluco as I have been looking forward to getting some. Any chances of getting a few tubers?

    1. No chance at all sorry, I will be lucky to even get a couple myself as the cuttings I have are not doing well at all.

    2. What exactly went wrong with them?

    3. All I did was fertilise them. I later learned from a bigger grower of ulluco that they like poor soil and can't stand fertiliser.