Monday, 2 December 2013

Winter Vegetables

The vegetable garden basking in the winter sun
We got back from our holidays last week and the first job on the farm was tidying up the vegetable garden after 5 weeks of neglect. With the help of some good weather and a few days work it’s now looking more or less like it should do. So here are a few photos taken this afternoon showing what we’ve got growing at the moment:

Italian peppers
Amazingly we still have lots of  peppers to pick! In fact we have got so many peppers that we have been making lots of chutneys and relish to use them before the bad weather comes and spoils them.

Blocky "Californian" peppers

More normal winter vegetables for this time of year are members of the Brassica family like cabbages, swede, turnips and brocculi. We have different Brassica planted; some for us to eat over the winter and some hopefully will be ready when our first guests arrive next April.

Savoy cabbage for spring harvest

Early purple sprouting just ready for picking

Late purple sprouting which should be ready for picking in March and April

We have lots of swedes. Some are for us to eat over the winter, some will be for guests in early spring and if we have too many the sheep love them!

These are the last of our oriental vegetables which are also members of the Brassica family. They grow fast and can be used either in salads or in stir frys.
We also grow endive or escarola for salads over the winter; they are hardier than lettuce and this variety "escarola rubia" tastes really good!

A lovely bed of leeks heavily mulched with horse manure and ready for us to enjoy over the winter months

and for our guests our onion seed bed. These plants will be planted out in March and the dried onions should be harvested June July time.

Broad bean plants which we should start harvesting from for Easter

In the greenhouse we are still picking plenty of tomatoes

and last but not  least oats, not for eating but for a cover crop; we sow them rather than having bare soil over the winter. They will help to help keep the soil in exellent conditions ready for the next crops to be planted here in the spring.

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Hotel Posada del Valle is a small hotel in Asturias Northern Spain surrounded by its own organic farm and where we are passionate about organic farming, food, and sustainable livelihoods. In this Blog those of us who live and work at Hotel Posada del Valle open a door to share with all of you who are interested in what we are doing.