15 May 2014

Parsnips and Pumpkins

 
This whole allotment stuff has been bit of a seed(y) business recently; romanesco cauliflower, carrots, peas, spinach, beetroot, Brussels sprouts, parsnips, cucamelons, and, of course, my darling pumpkins have all been sown within the last couple of weeks.

 
This year we are trying a different approach with the parsnips. Last year most of ours failed, which may (or may not) have been due to the variety: Albions which we had less of did brilliantly, but Countesses failed miserably. Last year, I also got enough of the somewhat annoying 'are you a weed or are you a parsnip seedling' game. Maybe this is the reason for the failed parsnips- I weeded them all, hehe, but I'm not admitting to anything... So this year, we decided to start the parsnips off in peat pots in a propagator. The seeds have germinated well and the little seedlings have now been planted outside. So far they have all survived in the cold and rainy environment.  We cut the bottoms of the peat pots off so that the tap roots don't get stuck. We didn't want to put all our eggs in to one basket, or seeds in a pot in this case, and have sown some directly into the ground too, so I will get to play my weed or seed game again, hehe.  I'll keep you posted.

 
 


Then to my favourite subject; pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins. I'm sure it's come across that I love growing, cooking and eating pumpkins. And just looking at them. Last year I wrote a little more about my obsession with pumpkins which can be found here.
 
 
 

We are growing 5 different varieties this year; traditional Charmants, tasty Crown Princes, little Hooligans and fascinating Turk's Turbans. The fifth one? Atlantic Giant. I know, crazy. From time to time I've played with the idea of growing a giant pumpkin, but often thought it doesn't really make sense. The pumpkin with it's vine will take a lot of growing space, it will require a substantial amount of feeding, I can't really bring it home (although it would make an interesting feature in the living room..) and will a pumpkin of 100 to 200 pounds even taste good? Aided by a conversation at work, I thought why not and got a packet of Atlantic Giant seeds so the experiment has started!
 
 
 

This year we have trialled with a small plastic greenhouse and so far our experience has been good- our seedlings seem to have enjoyed their time in it and the seedlings are reaching quite heights- have a look at the seedlings our Instagram account here (we finally managed to create an account and I'm now seriously addicted, of course).  Well, I guess this means only one thing: ladies and gentlemen, this is the official start of the 2014 Pumpkin Watch!

Oh yes, there were few gourd seeds sown too.
 
How do you start your parsnips off? Are you growing any pumpkins this year? Have you ever grown a giant pumpkin? Any tips on how to make them grow giant?

Mr and Mrs V x

6 comments:

  1. Yes you are a pumpkin Lady. I have to learn a lot of thing about pumpkin on you! This season my pumpkin vine is really poor. It grow so well at the first, then become worse and worse. Maybe next I will post it, and I want you give me some advice. I have no idea about parsnip, I have never grown it before.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your comment! I'm not sure if my success with pumpkins has only ever been down to being lucky as I usually just leave them to do their thing, giving feed to them once a week. I guess it could be more humid where you are which could cause problems?

      Delete
  2. Odotan innolla miten kasviksenne tänä vuonna kasvavat! Minulla ei ole tänä vuonna yhtään kasvatuskokeilua, joten tämän blogin kautta voi sitten ihmetellä kasvien kehitystä.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kiitos kivasta kommentista Karkkis! Saas nähdä, mitäs tänä vuonna kasvaa, kun herneet näyttää vähän onnettomilta ja etanat söi kukkakaalin versot. Eiköhän se tästä, kun kesä pääsee kunnolla vauhtiin ;)

      Delete
  3. I'm not so hot on pumpkins, but this year with the parsnips, I think I've done better. If you get a clear plastic sandwich box, put a sheet of wet kitchen towel on the inside of the lid, your parsnip seeds on the towel then the base on top and leave it on a window sill. When the seeds start germinating, you can plant them in pots or sow them directly. Always worth buying a new packet of seeds, last years leftover's nearly never work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your comment Lost the Plot! I've heard of your method before and think I'll be trying it next year with sowing them directly to the ground after germination as this seem the most hassle free way. Yes, agree with buying a new packet of seeds every year. The only time I've used previous year's seeds was this year with the pumpkin variety Hooligan as it was hard to find new seeds, also I wasn't that bothered about growing them, so was willing to take the risk :)

      Delete

Thank you for reading and thank you for your comment- greatly appreciated!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...