How to grow organic vegetables
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Crop type Plant type Family, Botanical name Height, Spread, Recommended cultivars Sow/Plant, Depth & Spacing, Propagation, Harvest Cultivation notes
Chinese Artichoke (Japanese Artichoke, Chorogi, Crosnes), HP, Labiatae, Stachys affinis, S. tuberifera, S. sieboldii 15" Plant tubers February to March 6" deep, 12"x18". Harvest late Autumn onwards. Ensure entire crop is harvested Tolerate soil conditions pH 6.0 to 7.5, but do not like poorly drained or very acid soils. Dig in plenty of manure previous autumn, if possible. Protect from frost. Water well in dry weather and mulch. Feed fortnightly with SM3 in poor soil. Can be stored in ground. Virtually pest and disease free.
Globe Artichoke, HP, Compositae, Cynara scolymus 3'x3'
Green Globe Improved, Gros Camus de Bretagne
Sow in seedbed ½" deep mid to late April, set out 2½-3' apart. In third year cut 9" suckers March to April to replace. Water regularly until established. Suckers potted up in November and planted out in April should be taken after 2 years, as plants should be replaced every 3 years. Cut mature fleshy heads with 1" stem when still tight from second year July to October. Cut main heads first. About 10 heads/plant. A hungry plant, best in rich sandy soil in a sunny position. Use plenty of manure to prepare site. When plants are 6" tall, mulch with hay and grass cuttings or strawy manure. Cut away all but six of the suckers when plant reaches 8" and transplant to make a new row. Hoe regularly, water well in dry weather. Remove all flowers before they turn purple in first year. Cut right down in November. Protect with straw. Remove straw and top dress with 3oz/sq yd in March. Virtually pest and disease free.
Jerusalem Artichoke, HP, Compositae, Helianthus tuberosus 6'+
New White, Fuseau, Dwarf Sunray, Silver Skinned
Plant tubers January to March or September 4-6" deep, 12"x36". Small tubers with at least one eye are best. Tolerates partial shade. Harvest from October. About 4 lb tubers/plant. Ensure all tubers are lifted (invasive). Store moist Will tolerate a wide range of soil conditions pH 6.0 to 7.5, but do not like poorly drained or very acid soils. Dig in plenty of manure previous autumn, if possible. Do not feed. Stake & wire from May and earth up. Cut foliage to 6" in October when it starts to go brown. Remove all tubers by spring or they can become invasive. Virtually pest and disease free.
Asparagus, HP, Liliaceae, Asparagus officinalis 12", 12"
Minerve, Lorella, Giant Mammoth, Regal, Connover's Colossal, Sutton's Perfection
Cover crowns in damp sacking if they cannot be planted immediately. Plant crowns 4" below surface, 15"x15" March to April or sow seed 1-1½" deep March to May in small pots, plant out autumn. . Harvest from third year (F1 second year) late April to end June Cut 4" below soil level. 15/20 spears/plant. Remove perennial weeds and dig in plenty of compost in winter. Dig a 10" deep trench, 15" wide in April, rake in 3oz/sq yard fertiliser, make a 3" deep ridge in the bottom. Plant crowns on ridge, 18" apart, cover with 3" soil. Cut fern down when yellow first year. Top dress in February , cut fern down when yellow second year. Top dress annually after harvest, late June. F1 crops grown from seed crop from second year.
Aubergine (Egg plant), Annual, Solanaceae, Solanum melongena 30"x24"
Black Beauty, Black Prince, Early Bounty, Bambino, Easter Egg, New York Purple
Sow early April at 70° F (20°C) in 3" peat pots. Barely cover seed. First transplanting to very rich soil. Plant out in warmed soil 30"x30" (Bambino 12"x12") in June (65-70°F 18-21°C), mulch with straw. or in 10" pot or 2/3 per growbag. Harvest late August (60-70 days from planting) at 6-8" Expect 3-8 fruits per plant. Cloche outdoor plantings or erect a clear screen around plants. Remove cloches during the day in warm weather only. Prone to aphid attacks. Start feeding every 10 days with tomato fertiliser in July. Pinch out at 9", stake. Tie side shoots to canes. Allow 5/6 fruits/plant, 1 per stem.
Basella (Malabar Spinach) (greenhouse), Biennial t/a annual, Basella rubra Tall climber March at 60° F, Sow ¼" deep in pots or trays. Prick out into individual 3" pots. This is a climber: grow on a fence. Harvest leaves as required. A tropical plant grown for its edible leaves, which are used like spinach. Normally grown under glass, trained up trellis or in a hanging basket. Will thrive in warm weather. Susceptible to frost injury.
Broad bean (Faba bean), maincrop, Hardy annual, Leguminosae, Vicia faba 15"-42"
Aquadulce (autumn), The Sutton, The Midget (dwarf), Red Epicure, Express, Masterpiece Green Longpod, Imperial Longpod, Feligreen, Windsor
November to overwinter, early March-May, December to January in frame to plant out in March, 3" deep, 9"x15" or 12"x12" (dwarf varieties 9"x9") Multiple sow: 3/12oz cup March, Harvest late June to August (90-110 days) Protect Autumn-sown crop from frost October to March, top dress with 1-2oz/sq yard of FBB in February. Needs potassium. Pinch out 4-6" of growing tips when in full flower to thwart blackfly. Rake in seaweed meal and feed in growing season. Water well only when flowering commences. Support with string and canes at 12" intervals. Dry in sun before storing. Cut plants down to 4" after harvesting is complete and dig in.
Drying bean (Haricot/Kidney bean), Half hardy annual, Leguminosae, Phaseolus vulgaris 18"-5'+
Brown Dutch, Mexican Black, Chevrier Vert, Rose d'Eyragues, Chinese Yellow, Comtesse de Chambourd, Limelight,
3/12oz cup in April to June or May direct, 2" deep, 2-4"x15". Harvest September (90-100 days) Neutral soil is ideal (pH 7.0), not acid. Apply 1-2oz FBB/sq yd a fortnight before sowing. Pinch out at 18". Water well and mulch in summer. In early autumn, when pods are yellow, pull up whole plant and dry, put in a sack and beat with stick to thresh the beans.
French bean (outdoor), Flageolet bean, Runner bean - bush types, Annual, Leguminosae, Phaseolus vulgaris 18"-8'
Limelight, Chevrier Vert, Aramis, Purple Tepee, Kinghorn Wax, Royalty, Pros, Delinel; Runners: Pickwick, Gulliver, Hammond's Dwarf Scarlet
April in pots or trays min 12°C, May to July outdoors, never in cold, wet conditions, 2-3" deep, 6"x6" or 4"x15", Or multiple sow 3/12oz cup April, plant out 12"x12" in May. Harvest July to October (60-70 days) Warm soil with cloches in April. Apply 1-2oz FBB/sq yd a fortnight before sowing. Mulch with peat, straw or black polythene. Keep well weeded, especially at harvest time, but don't hoe deeply. 3-4 gal water/week at flowering stage. Prolong cropping by covering plants with cloches in early Autumn.
French bean (greenhouse), Annual, Leguminosae, Phaseolus vulgaris 18"-8'
Blue Lake, Hunter, Largo, Kingston Gold, Purple Podded, Rob Roy
(3/12oz cup) Sow early Spring 1" deep, Plant out 12"x12" or 10" pot late Spring/early Summer. Harvest July to October Support with strings. Pinch out at top. Keep well weeded, especially at harvest time, but don't hoe deeply. Feed weekly with SM3. After first crop, remove lower leaves, drop plants to ground in coils. New growth will climb strings.
Lablab bean (Hyacinth bean), Leguminosae, Dolichos lablab aka Lablab purpureus 4-6' 6"x36" The plants are not heavy croppers, you need at least a 20' row. The green pods, dried beans and leaves are edible.
Lima bean (Butter/Madagascar bean), Perennial t/a half-hardy annual, Leguminosae, Phaseolus lunatus or Phaseolus limensis 2-6'+
Burpee Improved. Bush, Burpee Fordhook, Prizetaker
Singly in 3" pot in April at 60-85°, 1" deep or direct in late May (about 2 weeks after first runners) in 2" deep trench, eye down, lightly cover. 8"x24"(bush) or 4"x24" (climbers) 3-4 weeks after last frost. Harvest September to November, when beans plump up pods, Pick gently to encourage new blossoms Requires full sun (no shade at all). Manure growing position well in Autumn. Climber: provide stake. Mulch with well rotted compost. Protect from cold for first 4 weeks. Water in sever drought only (roots may rot). Keep well weeded, especially at harvest time, but don't hoe deeply.
Runner bean & climbing French bean (Pole bean), Pea bean, Perennial t/a half hardy annual, Leguminosae, Phaseolus coccineus and Phaseolus vulgaris 10'-12'
Runners: Czar, Desiree, Mergoles, White Emergo, Lady Di, Red Rum. French: Blue Coco, Purple Podded, Blue Lake, Earliest of All
Sow in pots or trays in early May, or mid-end May outside, 2-3" deep, 6" apart in double rows 2' apart or 1' apart in wigwams. Support with canes, string or netting. Harvest July to August (90-110 days) Snap off just below stem; another pod will form Grow bush varieties like French beans. Dig a trench and put in plenty of well-rotted manure or compost in Winter (alternatives in order of preference, best first, leafmould, poultry manure, shredded newspaper). Top dress site with balanced fertiliser 2 weeks before sowing. Sow after all danger of frost has passed. Water well if dry. Prone to blackfly. Pinch out at 18" & so on. Keep well weeded, especially at harvest time, but don't hoe deeply. Mulch with grass, straw or peat before flowering. The old bi-coloured runner bean is Painted Lady.
Soya bean, Leguminosae, Glycine max 1-6' Sow direct late spring when soil is warm, 1" deep, 3"x15". Harvest at green pod stage or at maturity Hoe between plants as soon as plants an be seen and keep well weeded. Stop cultivating at knee high.
Beetroot, Sugar beet and other Beet grown for roots, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Chenopodiaceae, Beta vulgaris conditiva,
B. vulgaris saccgarufera
6-12", 6-12"
Boltardy, Forono, Burpee's Golden, Albina, Chioggia, Bull's Blood (decorative) Baby: Pronto
'Wash' seeds in wheatflour before sowing, soak for 1-12 hours (highest in warm weather). Station sow earlies: late March, maincrop: May to June and successionally every 3-4 weeks 1-2" deep, earlies 1"x8" or 2"x2", maincrop 3"x8" or 4"x4". (Or Multiple sow 3/cup plant out 12"x12".) Sugar beet: 15"x18". Thin at 12 weeks, transplant thinnings. Harvest June-Sept (50-60 days) Sugar beet November on. Leaves like spinach Use bolt resistant varieties for early crop. Use calcified seaweed to provide lime and minerals on poor soils. If previous crop was not manured, dig in compost in Autumn. Keep well hoed. Water when dry. Protect from birds. Likes mulch of seaweed or seaweed meal. Harvest beetroot at golf ball size. Beetroot bleeds if root or leaves cut. Lift before first frosts. Store in moist sand in a cool dark place.
Broccoli, Chinese (Ch. Kale), CruciferaeBrassica oleracea alboglabra. 18" Sow May to September. ½" deep, 5"x5" for whole plants, 12"x12" for sprouts. Harvest July to November (10 weeks; whole plants: 8 weeks) Pick shoots while still in flower bud stage, taking central shoot first.
Broccoli, green (Calabrese), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis cymosa var. italica

2'
Green Comet, Shogun, Mercedes, Citation, Romanesco

Sow April to May in situ or in divided trays or soil blocks (not seedbed), ½" deep, 8"x18"" (Romanesco 2'x2') plant out June. Harvest July to November (12-14 weeks), September (Romanesco) Keep well watered at all times. Mulch against weeds. Cut main shoot in July and feed well.
Broccoli, purple/white sprouting, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis cymosa 3'x3'
Christmas Purple Sprouting, Red Arrow, Red Spear, Rudolph
Sow April to mid May in seedbed or trays, ¼" deep, 24"x24" at 3-4" tall, in June to July. Plant out June to mid-July. Harvest Purple: January to May (60-100 days) White: late February to May Felt collars. Protect against pigeons. Earth up stems, water, mulch during summer. Stake in exposed areas. Cut central spike first when still tight. Pick regularly to encourage cropping.
Broccoli, Perennial, HP, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis asparagoides 3'
Nine Star Perennial
Sow March to May in modules ¼" deep, transplant June or July 36"x36" to permanent site. Replace every 3 years. Harvest April and May Requires a fertile well-drained soil. Keep well hoed and mulch to conserve moisture. May need staking. Protect from birds, especially in winter/spring. Harvest top shoot first, taking about 6" of stem. When it runs to seed, cut down stems and top dress with good manure or compost.
Brussels sprout, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea gemmifera 18"-42"
Single harvest: Early Half Tall, Peer Gynt F1, Oliver F1, Richard F1, Citadel F1, King Arthur F1. Continuous: Bedford Asmer Monitor, Rubine, Citadel, Achilles, Ormavon, Rampart, Fortress, Noisette
Sow December in cups at 50-55° or mid-March to mid-April in seedbed or trays ¼" deep. Plant on at 3" high, snipping off root tip, 4" each way in a holding area, if necessary. Plant out in May at 4-6" tall Œ20"x20" (baby sprouts) or 36"x36". Single harvest September (60-100 days) or continuous September to March. Tops from February. Pick lowest sprouts first. Felt collars. Dig in compost/manure if available and 2 handfuls FBB/square yard. Firm soil well. Earth up stems, water and mulch; stake if necessary. Remove yellow leaves to prevent fungal diseases. Dress with FBB or seaweed meal in mid summer on poor soils. Water well in dry spells. Prone to whitefly.
Cabbage, Chinese (Pe Tsai), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica rapa pekinensis & Brassica rapa chinensis 12"-15"
Ruffles (fluffy top), Tip Top, Kasumi, [Minato] Santo, Jade Pagoda, Nagaoka 60 day, Sampan
Station sow direct June/July, August/September under cover, ¼" deep, 12"x12" . Harvest August to September, October to November (9-12 weeks) Not very hardy. Prefers light shade. For good growth needs cool weather and very fertile moisture retentive soil. Lime if acid. Water frequently. Keep well weeded. Protect from flea beetles with floating mulch. Pull up any that bolt. Tie with raffia when they begin to heart up. Can also be used for CCA seedlings. Store in cool place under straw.
Cabbage, red, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata var. rubra 10"-12"
Red Drumhead, Ruby Ball (summer), Autoro, Hardoro, Blood Red
Sow April-May in seedbed or trays, ½" deep. Plant out mid to end July 14"x14". Harvest September (60-100 days). Water well. Use collars to protect against root fly. After first frost, pull and hang in cool shed for storage.
Cabbage, Savoy, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata 12"-15"
Best of All, Ormskirk, Rearguard Baby: Protovoy
April-May in seedbed or trays,½" deep, plant out mid to end July 14"x14", baby 4"x4". Harvest October onwards Use collars. Lift remaining plants before heavy frost for storage. Pull up by roots, hang in frost free shed. Examine & remove diseased leaves regularly.
Cabbage, spring (and spring greens), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata 10"-15"
April, Harbinger, Offenham
Sow early August in seedbed, plant out mid-September to mid-October 4"x12" (for spring greens) or 12"x12". Harvest mid-March, use 2/3 plants for spring greens, cabbages April to June Earth up slightly 2 weeks after transplanting. Use collars. Hoe regularly. Top dress with FBB or seaweed meal in early spring. Harvest 2 out of 3 (to leave spacing 12"x12") for spring greens. After harvest, remove all stumps and roots promptly.
Cabbage, summer/autumn, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata 12"-15"
Golden Acre, Hispi, May Star, Primo.
Sow February to March indoors, March to May outdoors. ½" deep, plant out May to July 14"x14" . Harvest late July to autumn Use collars. Top dress in June. Lift remaining plants before heavy frost for storage. Pull up by roots, hang in frost free shed. Examine & remove diseased leaves regularly.
Cabbage, walking stick (Jersey cabbage) (not edible, but grown the same way), HP, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea longata 6-7' in first year, 15' plus in second year Sow as early as possible late winter/early spring at 19-21°C 65-70°F. Plant out 30"x30" apart mid to late Spring, taking care to plant roots and stem deeply. Stake as plant grows to maintain straightness. Harvest stems when at least ¾" diameter, 5-7' tall in autumn, or preferably leave until after flowering (up to 3 years) for strongest walking sticks. Good rich or well fertilised soil is important and a site sheltered from strong winds. Strip off lower leaves from stem as plant grows.
Cabbage, white, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata var. alba 12"-15"
Hidena F1, Polinius F1, Coleslaw Langedijk 4, Holland Late Winter
Sow April ½" deep, plant May 14"x14". Harvest October onwards Use collars. Lift remaining plants before heavy frost for storage. Cut off roots, stem and coarse outer leaves, store on slatted shelving in frost free shed. Examine & remove diseased leaves regularly.
Cabbage, winter white, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata var. alba 12"-15"
Decema, Winter White, Celtic F1, Tundra F1
Sow April-May in seedbed or trays,½" deep. Plant out mid to end July 18"x18". Harvest November to April (60-100 days) Protect against pigeons. Felt collars. Water well. Pull Minicole in late autumn, hang upside down with stalk in cool shed to keep for up to 2 months.
Cabbage, winter, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea capitata 12"-15"
Christmas Drumhead, January King, Winter Salad
Sow April-May in seedbed or trays, ½" deep. Plant out mid to end July Œ18"x18". Harvest November to April (60-100 days) Protect against pigeons. Felt collars. Water well. Pull Minicole in late autumn, hang upside down with stalk in cool shed to keep for up to 2 months.
Capucine, Tropaeolaceae, Tropaeolum tuberosae 3' Sow early April under glass. Transplant late May 20"x20". Harvest late Autumn. Virtually pest and disease free. Tubers are the crop, and will grow freely in a warm situation. May be stored in the ground.
Cardoon, Perennial t/a annual, Compositae, Cynara cardunculus 6' Sow 2" deep, March in gentle heat indoors, prick out into 3" pots, plant out mid-May 15"x48" or station sow 3-4 seeds in April 15"x48^ in trenches 12-18" deep). Blanch with cardboard collar and raffia in August/September leaving 2" leaves uncovered. Harvest 4-5 weeks later. Flowerheads can also be cut and used like globe artichokes. Stake at 12". Virtually pest and disease free.
Carrot, early types, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Umbelliferae, Daucus carota 12"-15"
Amsterdam, Nantes, Nairobi, Newmarket, Rondo, Early French Frame, Lisa, Parmex
Sow February to March under fleece, March to June, August to September, October under cover ½" deep 2"x2" Round carrots can also be started in modules in February. Harvest June, November to December, May (65 days) Carrots do not like manure or stony soil. Cover with cloches or fleece. Provide barrier against carrot fly. Hand weeding is important in early stages, later mulch with grass. Keep watered.
Carrot, maincrop, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Umbelliferae, Daucus carota 12"-15"
Bangor, Berlicum, Autumn King, Vita Longa, Chantenay Redcore
Sow late May ½" deep 4"x4". Harvest August onwards (65-75 days) Carrots do not like manure or stony soil. Provide barrier against carrot fly. Hand weeding is important in early stages, later mulch with grass. Keep watered. Can be left in the ground with straw mulch all winter.
Cauliflower, autumn, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis 18"-24"
Dok Elgon, Canberra, Vetch Self Protecting, Flora Bianca
Sow in blocks or seed bed in mid-May ½" deep. Plant out shallowly 28"x28" or (21"x21" for Australian varieties) in late June or as soon as plants are ready. Harvest September to December (60-100 days) Dig in compost/manure and 2 handfuls FBB/sq yard. Mulch 6 weeks after planting out. Feed until end July. Keep weed free, mulch and keep well watered in dry spells, but avoid wetting curds. Firm in late summer. Break leaves over curds to protect when mature.
Cauliflower, early, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis 18"-24"
All the Year Round, Snowball, Abuntia, Snow King, Barrier Reef, Dominant, Alpha, Predominant
October in pots, overwinter in cold greenhouse ½" deep. Plant out mid-March 21"x21". Check plants have growing points before planting out. Harvest June to July Dig in 15-20lb/sq yd manure in winter and 2 handfuls FBB/sq yard 2 weeks before planting. Mulch 6 weeks after planting out. Top dress in May before curds start to form. Keep weed free and well watered, but avoid wetting curds. Bend leaves over curd to protect from sun. Cut and store when ready.
Cauliflower, miniature, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis 10-"15"
Garant, Idol, Lateman, Montano, Predominant
Station sow 2-3 seeds April to June, thin to strongest seedling, 6"x6". Harvest July to October Dig in compost/manure and 2 handfuls FBB/sq yard. Mulch at 4 weeks. Feed regularly. Keep weed free and well watered but avoid wetting curds.
Cauliflower, summer, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae. Brassica oleracea botrytis 18"-24"
All the Year Round, Snowball, Abuntia, Snow King, Barrier Reef, Dominant, Alpha, Predominant
Sow April in soil blocks, trays or seedbed ½" deep. Transplant early to mid-June 21"x21". Check plants have growing points before planting out. Harvest June to September Dig in 15-20lb/sq yd manure in winter and 2 handfuls FBB/sq yard 2 weeks before planting. Mulch 6 weeks after planting out. Top dress in May before curds start to form. Keep weed free and well watered, but avoid wetting curds. Bend leaves over curd to protect from sun. Cut and store when ready.
Cauliflower, winter, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea botrytis 18"-24"
Snow's Winter White, Early March, English Winter, Walcheren Winter, Snowball, Late Enterprise, Thanet
Station sow 2-3 seeds mid-April to mid-May ½" deep. Plant shallowly Œ28"x28" in June and July. Harvest December to late May/early June Dress with 2 handfuls FBB/sq yard about a week before planting. Mulch 6 weeks after planting out. Top dress during late summer. Keep weed free and well watered but avoid wetting curds. Protect with fleece. Break leaves over curds when mature/hang whole plant in shed.
Celeriac, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Umbelliferae, Apium graveolens rapaceum 18"x12"
Balder, Claudia, Iram, Marble Ball, Monarch, Alabaster, Globus, Snow White, Tellus
January at 65°F in good light in blocks or trays. Barely cover seed. Plant out May to early June at 6" high 12"x15". Harvest October to March (120-150 days). Leaves can also be used in soups and stews. Hardier and less prone to pests and diseases than celery. Needs a long growing season. Mulch and keep watered in dry spells. Tear off side shoots. Remove oldest leaves from base of bulb in late summer. Weekly liquid feeding helpful in summer. Pinch off side shoots. Water well when dry, mulch. Blanch with soil in early Autumn. Lift and store before severe weather. Store in moist sand.
Celery, leaf (ParCel), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Umbelliferae, Apium graveolens 12"-18"
Amsterdam, ParCel
Sow April under cover, May to August outdoors. Surface sow. Plant out 5"x5" (August sowing u/c) Multiple sown: 8/cup: 8"x8". Harvest June onwards Take precautions against slugs. Cut plants frequently, starting about 4 weeks after planting.
Celery, self-blanching, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Umbelliferae, Apium graveolens dolce 12"-18"
Golden/White Plume, Celebrity, Golden Self-Blanching, Victoria, Latham Self-Blanching
Surface sow. March to April at 60° F (min 15°C) . Plant out at 6" high 9"x9" in late May/early June in a block. Harvest July to October (100 days) Individual outer stalks earlier Top dress 1 week before planting. Do not plant too deeply. Hoe regularly, but do not damage stems. Use Fertosan against slugs. Feed weekly from early summer onwards. Blanch with paper or plastic collars in mid-August. Keep well watered.
Celtuce (Stem lettuce), Hardy annual, Compositae, Lactuca sativa angustana 2' Sow late March to July fortnightly ¼" deep, transplant 18"x12". Harvest June on (80 days) Celtuce requires a fertile, well-drained soil pH 6.5 to 7.5. Hoe regularly and water well in dry weather.
Bulbous chervil, Umbelliferae, Chaerophyllum bulbosum 12" Sow November direct 12"x6". Harvest July (roots only: leaves are poisonous) Virtually pest and disease free. Keep weed free. Lift when leaves start to discolour. May be stored in ground. Store roots until October/November to develop the chestnut-like flavour.
Chick pea (Garbanzo, Egyptian pea), Half hardy annual, Leguminosae, Cicer arietinum 15"-18" Sow April at 70° F under glass. Plant out groups of 3 in June at 10"x20" (cloche). Harvest September. Hang whole plants to dry in warmth. Dig in plenty of manure before planting and warm soil with cloches. Mulch between rows. Remove cloches during the day only in warm weather. Water well in dry weather. Top dress fortnightly. Wear gloves when shelling peas. Dry out in trays. Virtually pest and disease free.
Chicory, non-blanching (Radicchio), red and green cutting types, HP t/a annual, Compositae, Cichorium intybus 3'-4'
Crystal Heart, Cesare, Sugarhat, Alouette, Medusa, Palla Rossa Bella/Verona
Sow in May/June. Barely cover seed. broadcast in patches or 5"x5". Harvest young green leaves summer, red leaves appear in winter and early spring. Likes a sunny site. Red chicory tolerates light shade. 2 handfuls FBB/square yard 2-3 weeks before sowing. Keep weed free. Water if dry. Remove any outer leaves affected with rot on winter crop carefully. Virtually pest and disease free.
Chicory, Sugar Loaf (Saladini Misuglio), Grumolo grown for CCA or seedling crop, HP t/a annual, Compositae, Cichorium intybus 3'-4'
Jupiter, Scarpia, Poncho, Misuglio. CCA: Trieste, Milano
Sow patches April to July for seedling crop, June onwards for CCA, Barely cover, 15"x9" (late sowing transplant under cover) CCA seedlings can be cut at 2½-3", main crop July onwards Late crops can be grown under cover, sowing July to August outdoors and transplanting in September. Virtually pest and disease free.
Chicory, Witloof (blanched), HP t/a annual, Compositae, Cichorium intybus 3'-4'
Winter Witloof, Robin (red), Apollo, Videna, Zoom F1
Sow early May in situ or in modules. Barely cover seed. Transplant to 15"x9". Harvest from October Choose a site manured for a previous crop for root production. Likes a sunny site. Dig up roots October to November when leaves are dying. Trim off roots, cut off all but ½" leaves. Store in dark in dry sand. Plant roots close but not touching in sand/soil (for support only) at 45-55° F, ½" crown showing, water, exclude light for 4 weeks, harvest chicons, discard roots. Virtually pest and disease free.
Chinese Spinach (Vegetable Amaranth), Hardy annual, Amaranthaceae, Amaranthus tricolor aka Amaranthus gangeticus 3-6', 2-3' Sow end May ¼" deep, transplant 12"x12". Pick young leaves as required Often grown as an ornamental, most showy in full sun. Grown for its edible leaves, which are used like spinach. Likes a sunny position on a rich soil but seems happy in most places, but dies off if subjected to frost. Keep well watered in dry weather if possible and hoe to control weeds.
Chop Suey greens (Shungiku), Hardy annual, Compositae, Chrysanthemum coronarium, C. carnatum 6"
Maiko
Sow March and every 3 weeks until September. September under cover, ¼" deep, in 12" rows, do not thin, best crops in spring and autumn. Harvest April to November when 2-5" tall (6 weeks) Tolerates light shade. Ideal catch crop. Likes fertile, moist soil. Provide some shade in summer to prevent bolting. Pick off flower buds. Plants will resprout if chopped off at ground level. Virtually pest and disease free. Does not store well.
Choy Sum (Flowering Pak Choi & Rape), Cruciferae, Brassica rapa purpurea, B.r. oleifera 12"-18", 12"-18"
Purple flowered Pak choi, Bouquet hybrid flowering rape
Sow August, Pak choi: 15"x15" Rape: 6"x6". Harvest October to December at 4-6" before buds open Transplant under cover in September (sow rape direct in August) for winter crop. Rape flower buds should show a hint of yellow at harvest.
Collards (Flowering or Scotch Kale), HP, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea var. acephala 18"-24", 18" Sow June to August ½" deep. Transplant 6-24"x36". Cut whole young plants or pick young leaves Work soil into a good tilth before planting and apply manure or compost. Requires full sun and ample moisture. Keep weed free. Stake if necessary.
Corn: Popcorn, Half hardy annual, Gramineae, Zea mays up to 8'
Peppy F1, Strawberry
Sow April in trolls at 70° or May to June in 62°F(17°C) soil (cloche), 1½" deep. Fleece to protect against birds. Plant out late May, 12"x12" . Corn should always follow beans , clover or alfalfa for preference. Harvest September (120-150 days) when becoming hard. Likes an open, fertile site sheltered from strong winds. Dig 2-3" layer of manure or compost into site in Winter. Pinch out side shoots at 6". Fill trench in July after soaking. Water when tassels appear. Fondle flowers & silks to aid pollination. Cut off black galls and burn. Peel husks off harvested cobs and leave in a dry airy place, trial popping occasionally. Should pop in a minute or two in hot oil when ready. Store kernels in airtight jars.
Corn: Sweetcorn, Half hardy annual, Gramineae, Zea mays, Z. saccharata up to 8'
Standard: Pilot, Earlibelle, Sunrise. Golden Bantam, Gill's Early Market, Golden Beauty, Seneca 60, Canada Cross. Supersweet: Candle, Sweet Nugget, Conquest, Sweet 77
Sow under cloches in situ May to June when soil 62°F(17°C) or April in peat pots Leave about a week between Early, Mid and Late varieties. Sow 1½" deep, 12"x12" (baby corn 6"x6") in 6" deep trench. Corn should always follow beans , clover or alfalfa for preference. Harvest July to September (120-150 days) when silks are dry and brown Likes an open, fertile site sheltered from strong winds. Dig 2-3" layer of manure or compost into site in Winter. Keep supersweet away from other types. Pinch out side shoots at 6". Fill trench in July after soaking. Water when tassels appear. Fondle flowers & silks to aid pollination. Cut off black galls and burn. Juice like clotted cream when ready. Cook immediately.
Corn salad, (lamb's lettuce, mâche), Hardy annual, Valerianaceae, Valerianella locusta, Valeriana olitoria 6"-9"
Jade
Sow August to September and March ½" deep 4"x4" or broadcast for seedling crop. Harvest October to April, late April on Grow in a sunny sheltered position in well-drained soil previously manured. Provide some protection for overwintering outdoor crop. Harvest individual leaves, no more than 2-3 per plant. Can also be used as a CCA seedling crop, broadcast. Virtually pest and disease free.
Couve Tronchuda (Portuguese cabbage), Biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea costata 6'+, 20" Sow early April in seedbed ¾" deep, transplant in June or July to 30"x24". Harvest September and October Will grow in any well-drained garden soil. The midribs of the leaves are the main harvest, though young leaves can also be used. ( "It is doubtful whether this .... is worthy of the space it occupies.")
Land cress (American cress) and Australian cress, Hardy biennial, Cruciferae, Barbarea praecox or B. verna and Lepidium var. 10"-30" Sow mid March-June successionally every 3 weeks, July & August ½" deep, 8"x6" or 7"x7". Harvest mid May onwards, pick young outer leaves, hearts on older plants Tolerates moist soils & shady situations. Summer crop best grown in light shade. Incorporate plenty of organic material and well firm the soil. At the onset of hard weather, cover with cloches if available, or transplant under cover for a more tender winter crop.
Cucumber, greenhouse (climbing), Half hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Cucumis sativus 3'6", 6'6"
Sporu, Telegraph
Sow chitted seeds in late February at 68° F (20°C) ½" deep on edge, plant 2/growbag in late May Provide climbing support. Can also be planted in frame, provide trellis. Harvest June to September (55-90 days) When dark green and firm Most useful in winter and early spring, goes to seed quickly at other times. Grows well in light shade, particularly summer crops. Likes a moist soil containing plenty of organic matter. Cloche at the onset of hard weather. Australian cress is virtually pest and disease free.
Cucumber, outdoor , Half hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Cucumis sativus 3'6", 6'6"
Burpee Hybrid, Kyoto, Burpless Tasty Green, Tokyo Slicer, Yamato, Chinese Long Green, Crystal Apple, Petite Pepina, Japanese Climbing
Sow mid-April in 3" peat pots at 70°, plant out end May/early June or in situ under jam jars or cloches late May in warm soil 1" deep, bush: 3'x3', climbers: 18"x18" provided support available, otherwise 5'x5'. Cloche for first few weeks after setting out, pinch out tips, pinch out side shoots at 18".. Harvest July to September (55-90 days) When dark green and firm Before planting, make a 12" deep hole and fill with organic manure topped with 6" of soil. Likes a sunny, sheltered site. Will tolerate light shade in summer. Grow climbers up trellis, pea netting or cane wigwams. Protect from frost. Keep weeded from 3-18", then fertilise, water and mulch heavily. Keep well watered. Feed weekly with comfrey liquid when fruits start to swell. Spray twice weekly. Leave male flowers on the plant.
Dandelion, Perennial, Compositae, Taraxacum officinale 4"x9"
Améliore Géant
Sow April, thin to 12"x9". Do not leave roots in situ over winter, unless a permanent bed is required. Virtually pest and disease free. Either blanch in growing position or force like Witloof chicory. Do not allow to flower, or in particular, to seed (invasive!).
Endive, curled (frisée), Half hardy annual, Compositae, Cichorium endivia 14"-18"
Green Curled, Moss Curled, Ione, Pancaliere, President, Ruffec, Wallonne
Sow April to end July 3-4 weekly, CCA April & September. Barely cover seed. 15"x12" (August sowing under cover) or for CCA 4"x4". Harvest July to October (90-120 days) CCA May to June, October onwards Dig in plenty of well rotted manure before planting. Semi-shade. Grow rapidly. 2 handfuls FBB/square yard 2-3 weeks before sowing. Cloches in late autumn. July to October, tie up dry leaves, cover to blanch 3 weeks before harvest, water with Fertosan.
Endive, broad leaf (Batavian/ escarole), Half hardy annual, Compositae, Cichorium endivia 14"-18"
Batavian Green, Winter Lettuce Leaf, Golda, Casco d'oro, Cornet de Bordeaux
Sow August. Barely cover seed. 9"x12" (August sowing under cover). Harvest October to April Semi-shade. 2 handfuls FBB/square yard 2-3 weeks before sowing. Cloches in late autumn. Keep winter crop well watered and mulched. July to February, tie up dry leaves, cover to blanch 3 weeks before harvest, water with Fertosan.
Evening Primrose, Onagaceae, Oenothera biennis 2"-5" Sow Spring, thin to 9"x18". Harvest roots October to March Sow into well prepared, but not freshly manured land. Virtually pest and disease free.
Fennel, Florence (Sweet fennel, Finocchio), Annual, Umbelliferae, Foeniculum vulgare azoricum 2'
Perfection, Sirio, Sweet Florence, [Zefa] Fino, Cantino
Sow April to July successionally at 60°F, prick out into 3" peat pots, transplant 4 weeks after pricking out, 7"x15". Harvest late June to late September Likes a sunny position and rich, moisture retentive soil. Apply 1-2oz FBB/sq yard at planting time. Must not dry out or likely to bolt. Plant deep and earth up or apply cardboard collars at golf ball size. Harvest 4 weeks later. Will resprout from stump. Clumps can be lifted in October for growing in pots indoors if desired. Virtually pest and disease free.
Fenugreek (Methi), Annual, Leguminosae, Trigonella foenum-graecum 2'   Well, it wouldn't grow for me at all on a very well drained allotment in South East England on chalk. Anyone had better success? Let me know
Garlic, HP, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium sativum 1'-3'
Marshall's Long Keeper or greengrocer's pink or red
(Sow September to November in light soil or in pots iunder cover) Plant out November/December or early February/March 1½" deep, 4-6" each way. Harvest July to August (150-180 days) when tops yellow and droop Dig in plenty of compost or manure. Protect from birds and frost. Keep weed free. Dry in sun or greenhouse for 7-10 days before storing. Handle very gently when harvesting to avoid bruising.
Gherkin, Cucurbitaceae, Cucumis anguria Up to 7' Sow mid-April in 3" peat pots at 70°, plant out end May/early June or in situ under jam jars or cloches late May in warm soil 1" deep, 36"x18". Cloche for first few weeks after setting out, pinch out tips, pinch out side shoots at 18".. Harvest July to September (55-90 days) When dark green and firm Before planting, make a 12" deep hole and fill with organic manure topped with 6" of soil. Likes a sunny, sheltered site. Will tolerate light shade in summer. Grow climbers up trellis, pea netting or cane wigwams. Protect from frost. Keep weeded from 3-18", then fertilise, water and mulch heavily. Keep well watered. Feed weekly with comfrey liquid when fruits start to swell. Spray twice weekly. Leave male flowers on the plant.
Ginger (greenhouse only), , Zingiberaceae 2'
Fresh plump root from greengrocer
Plant February to early March 3" deep. Harvest early December Ginger is readily propagated from small divisions of the rhizomes, each containing at least one bud or "eye". Use a large pot. Half fill with garden compost, add 1" potting compost, rhizome, 1" potting compost. Water well and mulch to 3". Keep in shade. Keep moist. Bring indoors for winter. Harvest when leaves die down. Requires good drainage, average temperature 75° F. Initial development is slow.
Gobo or (Japanese) Burdock , Hardy biennial, Compositae, Arctium lappa 3'-4' Sow April to July for succession ½" deep, transplant 12"x12". Harvest June to October (2-3 months). Harvest young shoots and peel to use like radish, tender stems can be used like asparagus. Roots are also edible, though said to be 'tasteless and fibrous'. Requires a fertile soil manured for a previous crop. Keep well watered in dry weather and hoe to control weeds. Lift roots promptly 2-3 months after sowing.Burdock may have oestrogen-like effects and therefore should be avoided during pregnancy.
Good King Henry (Mercury, Lincolnshire asparagus), Perennial, Chenopodiaceae, Chenopodium bonus-henricus 18"-24" Sow May ¼" deep, transplant 18"x15". Lift and divide when new growth occurs in Spring. Harvest flower buds March, shoots April to June, leaves as required Flourishes in the poorest soil, but prefers a rich one. Cut down and protect with straw in autumn. Virtually pest and disease free. For a decent crop of flower buds (2nd year on), a minimum of 12 plants are required.
Gourd (not edible, but grown the same way), Half hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Lagenaria vulgaris, L. siceraria, Trichosanthes sp., Luffa sp. Most are tall climbers
Striped Pear, Bottle, Miniature Bottle, Bicolour, Long Green Snake, Serpent, Loofah
Sow March in greenhouse individually in 3" pots. Transplant end May five plants per hill. Harvest July onwards when very hard. Cut with several inches of stem, dry 4-6 weeks on racks. Grow in a greenhouse, training up trellis if possible. Good fertile soil, but not too rich. Too much nitrogen will encourage foliage at the expense of fruit. Gourds can be grown inside moulds to control the shape. Wipe off any moisture during drying and never wash or disinfect. Scrape off any mould with a knife.
Hops, Perennial, Urticaceae, Humulus lupulus Up to 20' Sow under glass in February. Harvest young shoots at 3-4" in Spring Plant in an isolated position. Plant into small hillocks. Allow plants to grow away, but restrict formation of actual hops (flowers). Should die back in winter.
Horseradish, HP t/a annual, Cruciferae, Cochlearia armoracia 2'-4' Plant 6-8" thongs, 2" below surface in March at 45° angle 12"x12", 2" deep, Cut down foliage and lift in October Grows best on deeply cultivated soil in full sun. Very difficult to eradicate once established. Keep weed free. Remake bed every third year for best quality roots. Virtually pest and disease free.
Iceplant, HHP, Aizoaceae, Mesembryanthemum crystallinum 8" Sow April to May in trays. Plant out when risk of frost is past, 12"x12". Midsummer cuttings can be planted under cover. Harvest leaves and stems as requred once plants are large enough. Young leaves and stems used in salads. Pick constantly. Cloche in early stages. Remove flowers as they appear. Cloche in late summer to extend season.
Jicama, , Leguminosae, Pachyrhizus tuberosus Climber Sow indoors March to April, Harvest late May to Early June. Seeds are poisonous. Grown for turnip-like roots, used as water-chestnut substitute. Preferably grown in a greenhouse, giving them plenty of sun. Remove flowers.
Kale (Borecole), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea acephala varsabellica 1'-3'
Pentland Brig, Frosty, Dwarf Green Curled, (For very early crops: Spurt, Fribor, Showbor)
Sow April to May in seedbed, seed blocks or trays, plant out June to August, dwarf 18"x18", others 24"x24", CCA seedlings 6"x6". Harvest CCA from August, maincrop November to May Protect against pigeons. Scatter humus along sides of row at 2", but keep at least 3" from stems. Dress with FBB or seaweed meal in early Spring. Water regularly when young. Can cover with cloches or fleece in October for more tender crop. Cut out crown in December, feed with SM3 in March.
Rape kale, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica napus 1'-3'
Favourite, Hungry Gap, Asparagus Kale, Ragged Jack,
Station sow mid July ¾" deep, 15"x12". MUST NOT BE TRANSPLANTED. Harvest late December to April (55-70 days) Dress soil with 2 handfuls FBB before sowing. Does not take to being transplanted. Keep well watered. Harvest from centre outwards.
Kohl rabi, Biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica oleracea acephala var. gongylodeslica 12"
Summer: Green Vienna Winter: Purple Vienna, Delicacy Purple, White Vienna Baby: Logo
Sow March to June direct, in soil blocks or divided trays. Barely cover seed, 3"x12", at golf ball size, thin to 6"x12" (eat thinnings). Baby crops 1"x1". Harvest June to December (55-70 days) Prefers moist conditions. Protect from birds. Prone to aphids. Avoid hoe damage. Harvest at tennis ball size. Does not store well.
Komatsuna and Senposai (Mustard Spinach), , Cruciferae, Brassica rapa perviridis 12"-18"
Komatsuna, Green Boy F1, Tendergreen, Hiroshimana, Shirona, Senposai no. 2
Sow June to August, August to September under cover, transplant 4"x4" for harvesting whole or 12"x12". Harvest August to January, January to May (Young: 35-60 Mature: 55-80) Growing under fine nets recommended in summer. Cut whole heads of young plants, leaves and flowering shoots of older plants, leave to resprout.
Leeks, Hardy biennial, Liliaceae, Allium porrum 15"-30", 6"-15"
Blue Green Autumn Verina/Cortina, Blue Green Winter Derrick, Musselburgh Improved, Minis: King Richard, Lavi, Lancelot
Sow January to March indoors, March to April, plant out May to July. Barely cover seed. Plant 6-8" deep 6"x12" (minis 6"x6") late May to early June. Baby leeks 1"x1". Harvest September to May (100-120 days) Transplant indoor-sown seed in frame at second leaf. Dig in plenty of compost or manure. Dress with FBB 3-6 weeks after planting out. Keep well weeded and mulch with compost when established. Feed fortnightly from mid-August. Onion fly is confused by tall bottomless tins/jars. Can be blanched with collars.
Lentil (climbing), Annual, Leguminosae, Lens esculenta aka Lens culinaris 20"-24" Sow early Spring in sandy soil 1" deep, 8-12"x18-30". Harvest When leaves turn yellow Requires a sandy, well-drained but moisture retentive soil in a sheltered warm position. Hoe regularly to control weeds. Water in dry spells. Dry whole plants.
Lettuce, iceberg and cos types, Half hardy annual, Compositae, Lactuca sativa 10"-15"
Iceberg: Saladin, Webbs Wonder, Tiger (red), Sioux (red); Cos: Valmaine Baby: Little Gem, Jewel, Bubbles, Ice cube Winter: Winter Density
Sow early March under cover, plant out early April;. mid-March to late July Successional sowings every three weeks. Winter types as catch crop September. Barely cover seed, sow thinly, In high temperatures, sow at night, use reflector such as newspaper or other light coloured material. Thin so the leaves do not touch, Iceberg /Cos 12"x12"", Semi-cos and baby lettuce 6"x6" transplant early crop early April. Harvest June onwards Catch crops May to June Lettuce requires well drained, fairly rich soil, pH 6.5 to 7.5. Cos take drought better. Dress with FBB or seaweed meal once established. Water and mulch in dry weather, take care to avoid leaf scorch, providing shade if possible in very hot weather. Band cos 14 days before cutting. Protect from birds and slugs.Seedling crops can be broadcast in patches mid-April-mid-August (about 2"x2") Cut at about 3".
Lettuce, cutting, Half hardy annual, Compositae, Lactuca sativa 8"-10"
[Red] Salad Bowl, [Red] Lollo, Valeria, Lumina
Sow mid April onwards. Barely cover seed, 4" rows or broadcast. Successional sowings every three weeks. Harvest early June on (6-8 weeks) harvest at 2-3" cut just above crown. Plants will regrow for up to 4 cuts Lettuce requires well drained, fairly rich soil, pH 6.5 to 7.5. In high temperatures, sow at night, use reflector. Dress with FBB or seaweed meal once established. Water and mulch in dry weather, take care to avoid leaf scorch, providing shade if possible in very hot weather. Protect from birds & slugs.
Miner's lettuce (Winter Purslane, Claytonia), Hardy annual, Portulacaceae, Montia perfoliata 8"x8" Sow March to May, July, August for catch crop ½" deep, 5"x5". Harvest May to August, September to November, catch crop October to April Self seeds. Tolerates light shade. Can also be used for CCA seedlings. Will survive most winters outdoors.
Lettuce, winter, Half hardy annual, Compositae, Lactuca sativa 10"
Catalagna, Rouge Grenobloise, American Fordhook mustard, loose-leaf
July onwards, 9"x9" or Œ12"x12", Harvest early September on (10-12 weeks) In high temperatures, sow at night, use reflector. Plant in greenhouse. Water well when weather is warm. Protect from slugs. Fleece in cold weather.
Chinese Mustard, Mibuna and Mizuna (Kyona), , Cruciferae, Brassica rapa nipposinica 12"-18", 12"
Mibuna, Mizuna, Tokyo Beau F1, Tokyo Belle F1
Sow May to June (not Mibuna), late June to August, August to September under cover. 4"x4" for small plants, 8"x8" for medium plants, 12"x12" for large plants. Harvest July to August, August to January, January to May (Young: 35-60 Mature: 55-80) Fairly hardy. Prefers fertile soil, but not too fussy. Tolerates light shade. Growing under fine nets recommended in summer. Keep well watered. Protect from heavy rain/snow. Remove buds. Cut whole heads of young plants, leaves and of older plants, leave to resprout.
Chinese Mustard, White celery mustard (Pak choi, Gai Choy, Green in Snow), Annual, Cruciferae, Brassica rapa chinensis, B. juncea 10"-18", 12"
1 Amsoi;
2 Red Giant, Osaka Purple, Miike Giant; 3 Gai Choy; 4 Green in Snow
Sow direct late June to August ¾" deep. Transplant: 1 15"x15", 2 12"x12" , 3 9"x9", 4 8 "x8". Harvest early September to mid October (9 weeks) Use before first frost. Pak Choi is least hardy, Green in Snow very hardy. Requires a rich moist soil and will grow in partial shade. Thinnings of 3" and over may be eaten. If leaves chopped off at ground level, resprouting occurs. Can transplant under cover in Autumn, or cloche, or just leave it outdoors to grow in the cold.
Oca, , Oxalidaceae, Oxalis tuberosa 15" Plant invidial tubers in April in largish pots in heat. Plant out 20"x20" in May (cloche) or transplant to 25cm or larger pots to grow under cover. Dig tubers late in the season - they have a lemony flavour. As stems lengthen, earth up like potatoes. Virtually pest and disease free.
Okra (Bhindi, Gumbo, lady's finger), Greenhouse annual, Malvaceae, Abelmoschus esculentus 15"
Long Green
Sow February at 65-70°F in 3" peat pots, plant out mid May in greenhouse, early June outside 21"x21" (cloche), Harvest from June on indoors, September on outdoors Cover outdoor crops with polythene tunnels. Pinch out at 9-12". Soil must be well composted. Cut regularly to ensure a succession.
Everlasting onion, HP, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium perutile About 1'x1' Plant individual bulblets March to April. Final spacing: 24"x15" A single bulb will form a clump within a year
Japanese bunching onion, HP, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium fistulosum 20" Sow April to May in 15" rows, do not thin. Harvest late August on Lift and divide clumps every three years
Potato onion (Underground onion), Perennial, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa aggregatum 4' Plant individual bulblets February to March 1" below surface of soil, 12"x9". Harvest August to September Dry in sun before storing Mulch with well rotted manure so that roots can obtain plenty of moisture. Scrape away a little soil to reveal roots a few weeks before lifting. Bulbs left to mature will produce several offsets.
Onion, pickling, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa 12"-18"
Paris Silverskin, Barletta, Brunswick, North Holland, Flat Yellow Plastro, Purplette, The Queen
Sow March to May in situ at 12°C, broadcast ½" deep, thin to ½" apart (about 30/sq ') If white onions preferred, sow 1½-2" deep. Allow foliage to die down and harvest as bulb onions. Don't leave in soil too long, or may resprout. If not pickled immediately, can store until required for pickling.
Onion, seed (Japanese), , Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa 12"-30"
Imai Yellow, Senshyu Semi-Globe Yellow, Buffalo, Keepwell, Express Yellow, Kaizuka Extra Early, Yellow Globe
Sow August to September, ½" deep, 9" drills. Thin to 1½-2" apart (3" for large onions) in March to April. Harvest June onwards (125-185 days) Dig in 2-3oz FBB/sq yard 7-10 days before sowing. Top dress with 1-2oz FBB/sq yard after thinning. Water well in dry spells before ripening. Careful attention to weeding is important. Do not store.
Onion, seed (maincrop), , Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa 12"-30"
Caribo, Sturon, Hygro, Rijnsburger Robusta, Mammoth Red, Southport Red, Ailsa Craig, Bedfordshire Champion, Wijbo
Sow February in heat or March in situ ½" deep, 9" drills. Thin to 1-2" apart when straight (3" for large onions) Or multiple sow 5/cup plant groups 12"x12". Harvest September (110-130 days) when tops yellow and droop Dig in 2-3oz FBB/sq yard 7-10 days before sowing. Water well in dry spells before ripening. Careful attention to weeding is important. Bend tops down to hasten maturity late August to early September. Dry well before storing.
Onion, sets, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa 12"-30"
Stuttgarter Giant, Rijnsburger, Giant Fen Globe, Sturon
Plant late March to early April, heat-treated sets May or as packet 4"x4" leaving tips showing. Protect from birds. Replant as necessary if they get past your defences! Harvest September when tops yellow and droop Increase spacing to increase bulb size. Water well in dry spells before ripening. Ripen thoroughly before storing. Keep well weeded until July. Fine nets will keep onion fly at bay if necessary.
Onion, spring, , Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa 12"-18"
White Lisbon, Ishikura, Evergreen Long White, Winter Hardy
Sow successionally. March to June, July to August, thin to 1"x4" Or multiple sow ¾" deep late winter. Harden off. Plant out groups "x6" . Harvest June onwards (12-14 weeks) Later sowings, scatter in wide drill. No need to thin, pull individual onions when ready. Onion white rot causes yellowing, grey mould in roots. If it is present in the soil, grow no onions for 8 years.
Tree onion (Egyptian onion), Perennial, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium cepa proliferum, A. cebe 3'-4' plant sets Summer or early Autumn 1" deep, 15"x9" and firm well. Top sets produce large bulbs only in 1st year. Harvest from the following summer Immune to onion fly. Produces strongly flavoured bulbs in flowerhead clusters. It is important to support young plants and remove top sets when big enough, before they grow out.
Welsh onion (Scallion, Japanese leek), HP, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium fistulosum 20" Sow April or August ½" 12"x10". Harvest late August on Choose a lightish, well drained soil. For winter cropping, shelter from strong wind. Lift and divide clumps every two to three years, keeping only the youngest part.
Orach (Red mountain spinach), Hardy annual, Chenopodiaceae, Atriplex hortensis 5' Sow March to July direct every 4 weeks 1" deep, 24"x15". Pick young leaves as required. Grown for its edible leaves which are used like spinach. Requires rich, moist soil. Pinch out flower spike to prevent bolting. Water well in dry weather. Virtually pest and disease free.
Pak choi, Half hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica rapa chinensis 3"-18"
Chingensai, Mei Qing Choi, Joi Choi F1, Tai-Sai
Sow June to August ¼" deep, 6"x6" for small plants, 8"x8" for medium plants, 18"x18" for large plants. Harvest August to October (10-12 weeks) Tolerates light shade. For good growth needs very fertile moisture retentive soil. Lime if acid. Water frequently. Can also be used for CCA seedlings.
Pak choi, rosette, Hardy, Cruciferae, Brassica rapa rosularis 3"-18"
Tatsoi
Sow June to August ¼" deep, 6"x6" for small plants, 14"x14" for larger plants, August to October (10-12 weeks) Tolerates light shade. For good growth needs very fertile moisture retentive soil. Lime if acid. Water frequently. Can also be transplanted under cover in autumn. Can also be used for CCA seedlings.
Hamburg parsley, Hardy biennial, Umbelliferae, Petroselinum crispum tuberosum 12"-24" Sow April 1" deep, 9"x15". Slow to germinate, mark rows with radish to assist in weeding. Harvest very young leaves as required in salad, roots November on Tolerates light shade. Likes moist position. Soil preferably manured previous autumn. Mulch with straw in winter and store in the ground. Pick leaves as parsley substitute all winter. Virtually pest and disease free.
Parsnip, Hardy biennial, Umbelliferae, Pastinaca sativa 12"-15"
White Gem, Tender and True, Gladiator, Avonresister, The Student, Offenham Baby: Lancer
Soak seed before sowing. Station sow 3 seeds ¼" deep 5"x6", baby 1"x1". Sow late February to early March. Slow to germinate, mark rows with radish to assist in seeding. September to April (125-150 days) best after a few frosts Use jelly sowing method. NO MANURE, but 1 lb lime ½ lb FBB appreciated if needed. Keep well watered and weed free; avoid shoulder damage. Harvest after frost for best flavour. Store in ground.
Patience dock, Perennial, Polygonaceae, Rumex patientia 5' April, ¼" deep, 4"x4", transplant to 24"x24" Likes rich moist soil in full sun, but will tolerate partial shade.
Asparagus Pea (Winged pea), Hardy annual, Leguminosae, Lotus tetragonolobus purpureus 18"x18" (bush) Sow April to May in situ/April in trays 1" deep, 12"x15" (transplant at 3"). Harvest 1-2" pods August to October Pea sticks appreciated. Up to 10 weeks harvest. Virtually pest and disease free.
Pea, autumn, Annual, Leguminosae, Pisum sativum 18"-24"
18": Kelvedon Wonder, Hurst Beagle
Sow June to July in 3 drills 5" apart x2" deep, individual peas 5" apart, width between triple rows =mature crop height. Harvest September to October (12 weeks) Treat seed with paraffin. Top dress before sowing. Protect against mice and birds. Mulch in summer. Spray with soft soap & Quassia 1 week after first flowers open.
Carlin pea, , Leguminosae, Pisum sativum 6' 2"x48" Can't get either the seeds or any other info. Tell me if you know more
Pea, first early, Annual, Leguminosae, Pisum sativum 15"-6'
18": Kelvedon Wonder (mildew resistant), Hurst Beagle, 24": Early Onward, 30": Titania, 4': Gradus
Sow March to April when soil temp at least 45° F. Protect from birds. 3 drills 5" apart x2" deep, individual peas 5" apart, width between triple rows =mature crop height. Harvest May to June (12 weeks) Seed may be sown indoors late January in guttering 2"x2". Plant out March under cloches. Treat seed sown outdoors with paraffin. Top dress before sowing. Protect against mice and birds. Spray with soft soap & Quassia 1 week after first flowers open.
Pea, maincrop, Annual, Leguminosae, Pisum sativum 15"-6'
2': Recette, 28": Twiggy, 3': Lord Chancellor, 5': Alderman
Sow May to June. Protect from birds. 3 drills 5" apart x2" deep, 5" apart in triple rows, space between triple rows=crop height. Harvest July to August (14-16 weeks) Treat seed with paraffin. Top dress before sowing. Protect against mice and birds. Mulch in summer. Spray with soft soap & Quassia 1 week after first flowers open.
Pea, mange tout, Annual, Leguminosae, Pisum sativum macrocarpum 4' 6"-6'
2': Sugar Bon, 3': Oregon Sugar Pod, 5': Sugar Snap, Carrouby de Maussane
May onwards. Protect from birds. 3 drills 5" apart x2" deep, 5" apart, space between triple rows =mature crop height, or 24"x2" (dwarf). Harvest July onwards (60-80 days) at 1½-2½" long Treat seed with paraffin. Top dress before sowing. Protect against mice and birds. Spray with soft soap & Quassia 1 week after first flowers open.
Pea, petit pois, Annual, Leguminosae, Pisum sativum 3'6"
2': Cobri, Waverex, 3': Gullivert, ?:Minnow
Sow May onwards. Protect from birds. 3 drills 5" apart x2" deep, 5" apart, space between triple rows =mature crop height or 24"x2". Harvest July to mid August (60-80 days) Treat seed with paraffin. Top dress before sowing. Protect against mice and birds. Spray with soft soap & Quassia 1 week after first flowers open.
Pea, second early, Annual, Leguminosae, Pisum sativum 2' 6"-4'
30": Hurst Greenshaft, Onward, 4': Miracle, ?:Daybreak
Sow March. Protect from birds. 3 drills 5" apart x2" deep, 5" apart, space between triple rows =mature crop height Harvest mid July (13-14 weeks) Treat seed with paraffin. Top dress before sowing. Sow under cloches. Protect against mice and birds. Spray with soft soap & Quassia 1 week after first flowers open.
Pepper, hot, Perennial t/a annual, Solanaceae, Capsicum annuum acuminatum 15"
Chilli Serrano, Long Red Cayenne, Apache F1, Hungarian Wax, Jalapeno
Sow indoors late Winter at 21°C ¼" deep. Plant out mid Spring in 10" pots in greenhouse or 18"x18" outdoors (cloche). Harvest July to October when uniform in colour and shiny Pinch out at 6", tie to cane, tie inside shoots. Syringe daily when in flower to assist fruit setting. Feed at every watering. Peppers don't get hotter on the plant.
Pepper, scotch bonnet (greenhouse), Perennial t/a annual, Solanaceae, Capsicum annuum acuminatum 15"
Seed dried from shop-bought peppers
Sow indoors late Winter at 21°C ¼" deep. Plant out mid Spring in 10" pots in greenhouse or 18"x18" outdoors (cloche). Harvest when fruit is firm, shiny and uniform in colour The hottest peppers are produced from the poorest soil. Must be kept warm.
Pepper, sweet, Perennial t/a annual, Solanaceae, Capsicum annuum grossum 15"
Early Prolific, Gypsy, Queen Star, Redskin, Ace, Bell Boy (GH), Worldbeater
Sow March indoors at 70°F (21°C) ¼" deep, prick out into 3" peat pots. Plant out mid May in 10" pots or 3/growbag in greenhouse, mid-June outdoors 18"x18" baby 12"x12". Harvest July to October pick green and ripen off the plant Protect with cloches early in the season. Pinch out at 6", tie to cane. Syringe greenhouse plants daily when in flower to assist fruit setting. Water when very dry. Feed at every watering. Mulch with grass clippings.
Pokeweed, HP, Phytolaccaceae, Phytolacca americana 4' Sow under glass in Spring. Transplant to 30"x30" as soon as they are of a reasonable size. Harvest young shoots in Spring, leaves as required Virtually pest and disease free.
Potato, early, Half hardy annual, Solanaceae, Solanum tuberosum 15"-24"
Vanessa, White Cobbler, Concorde, Maris Bard, Epicure
Line trays with thick layer of newspaper in January to chit potatoes. Egg boxes are better if you've got enough. Stand potatoes eyes end up and put somewhere cool but frost free, in the light to chit. Plant out when sprouts 1" long. Plant 2" below soil surface, 12"x14", cover with 6" compost, straw or manure. Harvest June onwards (90-120 days) when flowers are fully open Spray every 10 days with SM3 once sprouts appear. Earth up at 9". Start harvesting when flowers begin to fall. Keep well watered.
Potato, in tubs, Half hardy annual, Solanaceae, Solanum tuberosum 15"-24"
Dunluce, Foremost
Plant chitted potatoes when sprouts 1" long. Put 4 tubers onto 4" soil & manure in barrel/bin/bag, cover with 4" soil. Firm down and water. Harvest June onwards (90-120 days) when flowers are fully open Chit as normal. Add 4" layer of soil when stems 6" high and repeat until plants 2" from top of container. Add final layer, keep well watered. Feed weekly with SM3. Start harvesting when flowers begin to fall. Keep well watered.
Potato, maincrop, Half hardy annual, Solanaceae, Solanum tuberosum 15"-24"
Desiree, King Edward, Majestic, Maris Piper, Picasso, Maris Bard, Cara
No need to chit. Plant March to April 2" below soil surface, 12"x30" cover with 6" compost, straw or manure. Harvest August onwards (90-120 days) when tops have died down Line trays with thick layer of newspaper in January to chit potatoes. Spray every 10 days with SM3 once sprouts appear. Earth up at 9" and every 2-3 weeks. Keep well watered. In areas with high slug population, use slug resistant varieties (Picasso, Maris Bard, Cara)
Potato, salad, Half hardy annual, Solanaceae, Solanum tuberosum 15"-24"
Belle de Juillet, Blue Eigenheimer, Jaune de Holland, Red Star, Pink Fir Apple
4" deep, 12"x30" Earth up in usual way
Sweet Potato (greenhouse), Half hardy annual, Convolvulaceae, Ipomoea batatas Vine Plant June 4-5" deep in a 10" ridge, 9"x15". Harvest Autumn (18-20 weeks) when leaves yellow, or as soon as frost threatens. Manure growing site before planting. Bury purchased tubers in moist sand until shoots form, then remove shoots and plant out. Keep well weeded. Earth up as tubers form. Lift runners to prevent new plant formation, which reduces the crop. Dry in sun, cure at 85-90° for 10-15 days. Store at about 50°, humidity 75-80%. Do not handle or move until time to use.
Purslane, Summer (Pigweed, Little Hogweed), , Portulacaceae, Portulaca oleracea 15"
Green (hardier), Yellow (v. succulent)
Sow May to June direct 6"x6", after all risk of frost is past. Harvest leaves, shoot tips, stems as required Pick regularly to encourage further growth. Remove any seed heads that appear. When plants start to run to seed, cut back to within 1½" of ground. Will survive drought without watering.
Radish, oriental (Mooli), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Raphanus sativus 6"-36"
Misato Green Flesh, Minowase Summer Cross, April Cross, Mantanhung (beauty heart), China Rose
Sow March to August, beauty heart types July to August, ½" deep, 3"x3" (beauty heart types 7"x7"). Harvest August to November (7-8 weeks) Use nets to protect against flying insect pests. Will stand for several weeks without deteriorating.
Radish, podding, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Raphanus sativus 3'
Munchen Bier
Sow March to August thinly ½" deep, rows 12" apart, thin to 12". Harvest pods June to November Pick green pods before seeds start to swell.
Radish, summer, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Raphanus sativus 6"
Cherry Belle, Inca, Red Prince, Crystal Ball, Long White Icicle, Pink Beauty
Sow March to September fortnightly, October to February under cover ¼" deep. Broadcast in wide bands or 6" rows, thin to 1". Harvest June onward (3-6 weeks) at 1" diameter Apply 1oz/sq yd FBB 1 week before sowing. Successional sowings until mid Autumn. Likes shade. Water well in dry spells. Good under cloches. Grow quickly to avoid woodiness.
Radish, winter, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Raphanus sativus 9"
Cherokee, Black Spanish Round, Violet de Gournay, China Rose
Station sow 3-4 seeds, July to August ¼" deep, 6"x12". Harvest October to March Grow following another crop or apply 1oz/sq yd FBB 1 week before sowing. Roots can grow up to 20" long! Store in dry sand. If they run to seed, pods can be used as podding radish.
Rampion, Hardy biennial t/a annual, Campanulaceae, Campanula rapunculus 3' Sow May to June shallowly, 4"x9". Harvest leaves any time, roots October onwards Often found on shady banks. Prefers light, deep soil with a high moisture content. Keep well weeded. Difficult to eradicate once established. Virtually pest and disease free. Can be stored in the ground.
Rocket (Salad rocket, Italian cress, Roka), Annual, Cruciferae, Eruca vesicaria sativa 3' Sow February to September ½" deep, 6"x6" or unthinned rows 12" apart or broadcast for CCA. Harvest as required (6 weeks) Requires a well drained soil in a lightly shaded position. Use nets to discourage flea beetle. Keep well watered. Pick off flowers to prevent bolting, especially in hot weather.
Saladini, Oriental, , Cruciferae, Brassica spp. 6"-12" Sow February to March under cover, April to May, August to September, October to November under cover. Barely cover seed. Sow thinly, aiming for seedlings about ½" apart (CCA). or thin to 9"x9" for large plants. CCA: 3-4 weeks at 2-3", after 2 cuts, thin and cut at 6" for stirfry Mixture includes Pak choi, Chinese leaves, Chinese mustard, mibuna, mizuna and komatsuna. If growing for large plants, treat as separate entries.
Salsify (Vegetable oyster) and Scorzonera (Viper's grass), Hardy biennial and HP t/a annual, Compositae, Tragopogon porrifolius and Scorzonera hispanica 3'-4'
Salsify: Mammoth, Sandwich Island Scorzonera: Habil
Sow March to early April. Station sow ½" deep, salsify 8"x15", scorzonera 15"x4". Harvest roots October on (130-170 days) after several frosts, shoots and flower buds in spring. Seed germinates unreliably and erratically if more than 1 year old. No manure or compost. Apply 2-3oz FBB/sq yd at sowing time. Hoe regularly to encourage growth. Water well and mulch. Roots bleed if damaged when hoeing or lifting. Store in ground. Cut leaves to 1" in autumn, earth up to 6". Cut shoots in Spring as soon as they start to show. Salsify flower buds with 4" stalk may also be taken just before opening in Spring. Virtually pest and disease free.
Scolymus (Spanish oyster) , , Compositae, Scolymus hispanica 3' Sow early Spring 18"x12". Harvest October on "Inferior to true salsify, inclined to be woody and lack any appreciable flavour". Use a rich deeply dug soil, poor soil encourages flowers rather than roots.
Seakale or scurvy grass, HP, Cruciferae, Crambe maritima 30" Rub off all but the strongest bud from each crown (or "thong") before planting. Sow seeds 1" deep or plant thongs 2" deep March or April 15"x18". Harvest leaf shoots end March to April from second year (be sparing first crop). 2-3 year old crowns can also be forced to crop from December to late Spring. Seed-grown plants cannot be forced the first year, and needs a permanent site. Hoe regularly. Remove any flower stems that develop. Clean up bed in autumn and remove yellowing foliage. Blanch with 9" clay flowerpots (cover hole) in January. Cut at 6-9". Top dress after harvest and mulch with well-rotted compost or manure. Catch crops can be grown between plants.
Shallot, HP t/a annual, Liliaceae (Alliaceae), Allium esculentum 12"
Sante, Topper, Pikant, Delicato, Dutch Red, Long Keeping Red, Long-Keeping Yellow, Hative de Niort
Sow 22 December to early February or May (Sante) or catch crops September to October 1" deep, thin to 7"x7". Harvest 21 June onwards (90-110 days) when leaves yellow and droop. Catch crops January to April. Early planting is important. Dig in plenty of compost or manure. Protect from birds and frost. Keep weed free. They keep better than onions. Traditionally planted 22 December, harvested 21 June.
Skirret (Crummocks), Perennial t/a annual, Umbelliferae, Sium sisarum 3'x15"
Sow end March-April and September for spring use, 9"x18". In second year, replant divided crowns 3" deep. Harvest early October onwards. Does not store well. Requires fertile well drained soil that has been manured for a previous crop. Keep well watered and feed occasionally.
French or Buckler's Sorrel, Perennial, Polygonaceae, Rumex scutata 4"-12" Sow March in sunny position, May in shade ½" deep, 12"x18", thin at 2" and mulch. Harvest leaves spring to autumn (from 8 weeks). Prefers a dry, sunny location. Enrich soil. Water well in dry weather. Remove seed pods. Roots may be lifted and divided in spring to increase. Do not dry.
Spinach beet/Perpetual spinach, , Chenopodiaceae, Beta vulgaris 6"-12" Sow April, July, station sow 3-4 seeds 1" deep, 9"x15" CCA 2"x4". Harvest June onwards, October onwards (60-80 days). Prefers a well-manured site in partial shade. Lime if acid. Keep well watered. Pick continuously. Harvest by pulling, not cutting, outside leaves (except CCA).
Spinach, New Zealand (Warrigal cabbage), , Aizoaceae, Tetragonia expansa aka Tetragonia tetragonioides 24"-36" Surface sow indoors February to May in peat pots or outdoors after all risk of frost is past. Transplant 24"x24" early June. Harvest mid Summer until frost (70 days). Soak seeds overnight before sowing. Pinch out tips. Keep well watered. Keep picking tips and young leaves to encourage further growth. Virtually pest and disease free.
Strawberry spinach, , Chenopodiaceae, Chenopodium capitatum 6"-18"
Strawberry sticks
Sow March to April in gentle warmth. Prick out into 5" pots. Plant out late May, 8" apart. Harvest leaves June to November, fruits July onwards. Pinch out growing tip to encourage branching.
Spinach, summer, , Chenopodiaceae, Spinacea oleracea 12"-15"
Monnopa (low oxalic), Jovita, Medania, Norvak, Symphony, Long standing round Baby: Teton
Sow March to July every 2-3 weeks ½" deep, 12" rows. Thin to 3" , then 6" baby 4"x4". Can be sown indoors in February. Plant out early Spring. Harvest June to November (8-10 weeks) when 6 or more leaves have grown to about 7". Tolerates light shade. Provide shade to prevent bolting. Cloche in bad weather. Keep well watered. Harvest half of the leaves at a time only.
Spinach, winter, , Chenopodiaceae, Spinacea oleracea 12"-15"
Sigmaleaf, Green Market, Long Standing Prickly
Sow late August or September ½" deep, 12" rows. Thin to 3" , then 6". Harvest December to April (12 weeks). Cloche from October. Keep well watered. Harvest half of the leaves at a time only.
Sprouting seeds, jam jar, , Leguminosae, Phaseolus angularis, Medicago sativa Adzuki Bean, Alfalfa, Triticale Wash and soak 1 cup in 4 cups tepid water overnight. Drain, rinse and put in a jam jar covered in muslin. Lay jar on side in a tray in the dark. Keep warm. Harvest by size of sprout: adzuki beans: 1", alfalfa: 1-2" (5-7 days), triticale: 2-3". Adzuki beans need a temperature of 70° F. Rinse adzuki beans 4 times a day, alfalfa twice a day, triticale 2-3 times a day. Adzuki beans take 3-4 days, alfalfa 3-6 days, triticale 2-3 days.
Sprouting seeds, tray, , Leguminosae, Trigonella foenum-graecum Fenugreek, Triticale Sprinkle on damp flannel or kitchen towel. Cover with flannel or kitchen towel, keep warm and moist. Harvest by size of sprout: fenugreek: 3", triticale: 2-3". Keep warm and moist. When sprouts are 1½" long, place tray on windowsill to green up. Fenugreek takes 4-7 days, triticale 2-3 days.
Sprouting seeds, Mung beans (Chinese bean sprouts), , Leguminosae, Phaseolus aureus   Soak overnight enough for ½" deep layer. Drain, rinse, put in well perforated plastic carton, cover with damp cloth. Harvest when sprouts are 2-3" (3-6 days). Put 2 lb weight onto 5" carton & pro rata. Keep dark (or use tin foil to exclude light) and warm. Rinse twice daily. Virtually pest and disease free.
Sprouting seeds, Mustard and cress, rape, , Cruciferae, Sinapis alba, Lepidium sativum, Brassica napus White, Tilney; Curled, Armado, Greek, Super Salad; Broad Leaved Essex Sprinkle on damp flannel or kitchen towel. Keep moist. Harvest Cress 10-14 days, mustard, rape 7-11 days. If growing mustard & cress together, sow cress 3 days before mustard. Rape is the sprout most often found sold as "mustard & cress". Sow seeds thickly and evenly & press down lightly. Cover to exclude light and keep warm. Remove cover when seedlings are 1½" high, place in light.
Sprouting seeds, outdoors, , Cruciferae, Sinapis alba, Lepidium sativum, Brassica napus, Medicago sativa Mustard, Cress, Rape, Alfalfa Broadcast in small patches or intersow March to September. Barely cover, keep moist Cress should be sown 3 days earlier than mustard or rape. Cress 10-14 days, mustard, rape 7-11 days. Four to five cuts may be made in succession in cool weather and moist soil. Rape can be left to grow 8-10" high for use as greens.
Squash, summer (Courgette, Zucchini), Half-hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Cucurbita pepo 18"
All Green Bush, Taxi F1 (yellow), Little Gem, Table Dainty
Sow 1" deep mid-April in 3" peat pots at 70° F (20°C), plant out end May/early June or in situ under jam jars or cloches late May in warm soil, bush: 2'x2', climbers: 18"x18" provided support available, otherwise 5'x5'. Harvest July onwards (12-14 weeks) When harvesting, cut all fruits to encourage further cropping. Fill a hole with a bucketful of rotted manure or compost, covered with 6" of soil to plant on. Protect from frost. Mulch and water in dry spells, but do not splash fruit. Feed weekly with comfrey water when fruiting. Pinch out laterals at 24". Grow climbers up trellis, pea netting or cane wigwams or train laterals evenly round each plant. Pick fruit regularly.
Squash, summer (other), Half hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Cucurbita pepo 18"
Zapallito de tronco, Caserta, Spaghetti, Golden crookneck, Prolific straightneck, Sweet dumpling, Custard pie
Sow ½" deep mid-April in 3" peat pots at 70° F (20°C), plant out end May/early June or in situ under jam jars or cloches late May in warm soil, 18"x18" (trailers 6'x6', provide trellis) or 2 plants/4' hill (bush) or 10' (vine). Remove flowers on transplantation. Harvest when skin easily pierced with fingernail. Cut all fruit to encourage further production. As courgettes
Squash, winter (Marrow), Half hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Cucurbita pepo ovifera 18"
Prokor, Smallpak, Ambassador F1, Early Gem F1, Long Green Trailing, Golden Delicious
Sow 1" deep mid-April in 3" peat pots at 70° F (20°C), plant out end May/early June or in situ under jam jars or cloches late May in warm soil , bush: 3'x3' , trailers: 4-6' each way. , after all risk of frost is past. ##harvest July onwards (12-14 weeks). As courgettes
Squash, winter (Pumpkin), Half hardy annual, Cucurbitaceae, Cucurbita maxima, C. pepo and C. moschata 18"
Hubbard, Banana, Butternut, Baby Blue, Buttercup, Hundredweight, Mammoth
Sow ½" deep mid-April in 3" peat pots at 70°F (20°C), plant out end May/early June or in situ under jam jars or cloches late May in warm soil, bush 3'x3' (trailers 4-6' each way, provide trellis) or 2 plants/6' hill (bush) or 12' (vine). Remove flowers on transplantation. Harvest late Autumn when colour is uniformly good or frost is imminent. If frost damaged, store at 70° F for a few days before putting in store. As courgettes
Sunflower, Annual, Compositae, Helianthus annuus 4'-12'
Russian Giant
1" deep, 24"x36". Harvest seeds when backs of flowers brown. Soil pH should be 6 to 8. Fertiliser and manure welcome. Stake.
Swede (Rutabaga), Hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica rutabaga, V. napus napobrassica 12"-24"
Marian, Sutton's Western Perfection, Purple Top, Acme, Lizzy
Sow May to June, ½" deep, 6"x6". Harvest October on (20-26 weeks) after several frosts. Best on a site manured for a previous crop. Best in a block, rather than a row. Mulch with compost or manure. Feed regularly with seaweed meal. Do not allow waterlogging. "Store" as for maincrop carrots. Can also be forced for shoots like chicory.
Swiss Chard (Ruby Chard, Seakale Beet, Silver beet), Biennial t/a annual, Chenopodiaceae, Beta vulgaris var. Cicla 2'
Green: Lucullus, Fordhook Giant. Red: Ruby, Feurio (bolt-resistant)
Sow March under glass or April, July in situ 1" deep, 15"x15". Harvest July onwards, November onwards (80 -120 days) Individual leaves at 6-8". Prefers a well-manured site in partial shade. Tolerates drought. Can be overwintered under cloches or transplanted August to September. Remove flowering shoots to encourage cropping. Pick continuously. Harvest leaves and stems together. Virtually pest and disease free.
Texsel greens (Abyssinian or Ethiopian mustard or cabbage), , Cruciferae, Brassica carinata 3'-5' Sow February to March under cover, March to September, September to October under cover, ½" deep, 3"x3". Pinch out at 15". Harvest March to April, April to November, October to December (7 weeks). Grows best in open, fertile, moisture retentive soil. Tolerate light shade in mid summer. Use nets against flea beetle.
Tomato, bush, Half hardy annual, Solanaceae, Lycopersicon lycopersicum 18"
Red Alert, Sleaford Abundance F1; Dwarf: Pixie F1, Tiny Tim; Phyra, Tumbler F1
Sow March to April at 15°C 6-8 weeks before last frost. Barely cover seed. Plant out at 6-9", in late April under cover or early June outdoors under cloche or fleece when soil temp reaches 50° F, 18"x18", or 2-3/growbag baby 9"x9". Harvest July to October (100-130 days). Before planting, apply 3-4oz/sq yd tomato fertiliser. A warm site is essential. Mulch to protect fruit from splashing. Water well and feed at transplantation and every 10 days. Remove covers when flowers start to open. Cloches will ripen end season's fruit.
Tomato, cordon, Half hardy annual, Solanaceae, Lycopersicon lycopersicum 10'
Ailsa Craig, Shirley F1, Tigerella, Big Boy F1, [Super]Marmande, Harbinger; Cherry types: Cherry Belle F1, Sungold F1, Gardener's Delight, Supersweet 100; Britain's Breakfast
Sow March to April at 15°C 6-8 weeks before last frost. Barely cover seed. Plant out at 6-9", in late April under cover or early June outdoors under cloche or fleece when soil temp reaches 50° F, 18"x18", or 2-3/growbag. Harvest July to October (100-130 days). Pot on at 3-leaf stage into 3" pot. A warm site is essential. Provide 5' stake. Remove side shoots and basal growths. Tie in frequently. Mulch to protect fruit. Water well and feed at transplantation and every 10 days. Remove growing point when 3 trusses have set (outdoors) or 4-5 trusses (indoors). Outdoor plants can be laid on straw or plastic mulch & covered with cloche to hasten ripening late season or hang up whole plants in greenhouse. The following varieties are greenback resistant: Moneymaker, Shirley, Tigerella, Piranto, Ailsa Craig, Alicante.
New Zealand Tree Tomato (greenhouse only), Tender perennial, Cyphomandra betacea 20'-25'
New Zealand
Sow Spring in greenhouse in individual large pots. Harvest from third year. Pinch out growing tip at 4'. Keep frost free in winter. Prefers conditions similar to those for citrus fruit. Virtually pest and disease free.
Turnip, Half hardy biennial t/a annual, Cruciferae, Brassica rapa 12"
Summer: Jersey Navet, Snowball, Oasis (melon flavoured) Baby: Tokyo Cross Winter: Golden Ball, Manchester Market
Sow March to April, July to August ¼" deep, earlies 4"x4", maincrop 6"x12" baby 1"x1". Harvest June to July September to October (50-80 days). Best on a site manured for a previous crop. Keep weed free. Mulch with grass clippings or hay. Lime at ½-1lb/10 sq ft if acid. Water well in dry spells. Store maincrop for winter use in ground. Cut foliage at about 8" for use as a sea kale substitute.
Water chestnut (needs heat), 3' Plant in a large tub at 4" depth early Spring in heat, then cover with 8" depth of water. Harvest Autumn. Harvest after the plant dies down in Autumn, draining the tub first.

Top ©2004 Frann Leach