Notes from the Market Garden: Winter Veg and Plans for 2023
Winter veg in the Market Garden
As the days have become shorter and colder, growth in the market garden has slowed to a standstill. We've still been able to harvest lots of wonderful winter veggies - kale, Brussels sprouts, oriental salads, spinach, carrots and parsnips - which are sold at the Granton Garden Bakery on Saturday mornings at the Pilton Community Health Project.
A bonus of the cold is that, as the temperature drops, these winter standing veg really sweeten up and taste even more amazing! Winter sweetening happens because of the plants’ ability to convert starch to sugar. As they grow, the plants store up energy in the form of starches. When the temperatures drop they convert these starches into sugars, which act as an anti-freeze agent for their cells (and make them super sweet and tasty).
If you've been walking past the field, you might have seen the first poly tunnel frame going up. There will be three in total, providing invaluable space for propagation and growing crops that need a little more warmth. A new packing shed is also planned to come onsite early in the new year which will give us the space to properly pack and store all the delicious veggies we'll be growing.
We've had some great days with volunteers who have planted trees in windbreaks to provide protection for our future crops and also planted a block of garlic which will be ready for harvest next June (all being well).
Plans for next year
As the year draws to a close, we're looking ahead to next year and making our crop plans to grow loads more delicious veggies, which will be available through a 'Community Supported Agriculture' (CSA) vegetable box. Keep an eye out for more information about this and how you can get involved!