Healthy Kitchen Garden – July Week 1

IMG_6689 DSCF4534 IMG_6693 DSCF4542 DSCF4533 DSCF4532What a week it has been here in our walled kitchen garden. Those of you who have been following our Blog will know that we have been working tirelessly this year to produce as much fresh organic produce as possible. We spend a lot of time helping families that have children battling cancer or recovering from therapy and strongly believe in the power of nutrition to heal the body. Due to this our aim is to provide fresh, weekly vegetable box free of charge to any families in need of our help.

When we say organic we mean it!

Food is something we are all very passionate about here at Bobby’s Healthy Shop and we don’t cut corners when it comes to our produce. As well as not using any chemicals on our produce, the water used on our plants is spring fed and then filtered through a rhino home water filtration system to make sure it’s completely chemical free.

What are we sending out this month?

July is set to be a very exciting month for us here in the healthy shop garden as our first crop of many varieties of vegetables are ready to harvest. This month will see us sending out:

  • Swedes
  • Lettuce
  • Savoy cabbage
  • Strawberries
  • Beetroots
  • Brassicas (Broccoli & Sprouts)
  • Gooseberries
  • Fresh mint
  • Salad onions

We are also increasing our growing space within our poly tunnels by suspending new growing platforms from the ceiling. Making use of this additional vertical space will allow us to reap an even bigger yield from our modest plot of just less than one acre.

 

Our ancient fig tree that sits on the far wall of the garden has had another bumper crop this year, we have learnt from our past mistakes and this year surrounded the tree in netting. The sweet tasting figs seem to be a favourite of the local birds and other wildlife.

We also have hazel and walnut trees in the grounds that we hope will be delivering a plentiful bounty this year.

What problems have we been facing?

Over the last few weeks there have been a number of issues that we have managed to overcome first of which being slugs, it seems every slug for miles around has now heard about our little enterprise and they have been arriving to the feast in their hundreds, while we hold the firm belief that every creature needs to make a living something had to be done! By using natural organisms called nematodes we have managed to get a handle on the infestation, but what is a nematode?

Nematodes are one of the most abundant creatures on Earth; with a typical handful of soil containing thousands of these microscopic organisms. Over 20,000 different species have been classified. One nematode species – Phasmarhabditis hermaphrodita – has adapted to infest the body of many common garden slugs. At 0.5mm (0.02”) in length, it’s virtually impossible to detect by eye. Within days, the ill-fated slug stops eating and retreats below ground to eventually die. The nematodes digest the decomposing remains, before producing a new generation that move off in search of new slug hosts. This is a completely holistic approach to pest control using the slugs natural predator to keep the numbers in check and it’s been working great!

Did you know it’s illegal to re-release a grey squirrel back into the wild once caught? Well the ones that end up in our humane traps always seem to escape once they are taken a few miles up the road. Like the slugs they are just out to make a living and bring up their kids and what right do we have to stop them?

What are we looking forward to in august?

Well august is when the harvest really begins for us with tomatoes, peppers and leeks all ready for the pot. As well as these we are looking forward to harvesting apples from our orchard which we will be turning into Apple Cider Vinegar as well as drying lots in our dehydrator which can then be used throughout the year.

 

 

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One thought on “Healthy Kitchen Garden – July Week 1

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