November newsletter 2012
Dear Fellow Gardeners,
Where did October go? This was supposed to be the month when we were going to wind the garden down and coast along until the new year, but the reality has been somewhat different. There still is the website to update with our new introductions, and we are still in the middle of harvesting and drying our chilli seeds. We will be going full speed until the beginning of December at least, but, hey, that’s the life we’ve chosen, and we love it.
Two extraordinary events happened in the past two weeks that caused us some concern: we had a hard frost that froze the water on a puddle near our outdoor tap; this was followed some days later by a snowfall. Both are unusual for West Dorset at this time of the year, and we hope they are just blips in the weather rather than harbingers of climate change.
Over winter trials
Using one of our larger tunnels, we have just finished planting over-the-winter trials of herbs, leafy greens and root vegetables. We want to compare the varieties listed in our catalogue with new ones that have recently caught our attention, and we will be looking at bolt resistance (some of the mustards, to our surprise, have already bolted), disease resistance and productivity. While this type of exercise isn’t proper science, it will, nevertheless, give us valuable information on variety performance, providing us with further insights into the varieties that we already sell, while identifying new ones that show promise.
Left: Our overwintered leafy greens; Right: the pak choi var. Joi Choi has not bolted yet.
What is bolting?
At Sea Spring Seeds, we are preoccupied with bolting. And so we should be since it is a serious affliction that brings the productive lives of both root and leafy vegetables to a sudden and unceremonious end. To read more click here.
Left: Bolting in mustard plants showing stem elongation; Right: flowering in a bolted tatsoi plant.
Christmas is approaching
It may seem too early to think about Christmas, but remarkably it is only six weeks away! We have several items that we think would make great Christmas presents:
- Gift vouchers to buy vegetable seeds (click here) or chilli plug plants (click here) from our websites.
- A place on a "What's hot, what's not" pepper growing course. Costing £20 and held at our nursery in West Dorset (these value-for-money courses are packed with information, and are suitable for any keen chilli grower).
- Chilli t-shirts.
- Chilli prints and posters.
Christmas cards – how about sending out Christmas cards with a difference? We have a great assortment of cards (blank on the inside) with chilli designs that give the season's greetings a boost. For more information click here.
Chilli t-shirts would make a good Christmas presents; chilli-themed Christmas cards.
Name the chilli
What talented customers we have! Your submissions for the ‘Name the Chilli’ competition have shown a mix of imagination, originality and even audacity. But, like the man-eating plant in Little Shop of Horrors, feed us more, please. Those of you who haven’t yet submitted a name – or even if you have – don't wait, you have until December 1st to do so. For more details click here.
The person with the best suggestion will win £20 worth of seeds and/or plants.
This chilli needs a name; any suggestions?
The season is going well for the Possums. They are currently fourth in their division, with their next match is scheduled on 17th November against Sturminster Marshall Reserves; kick off at 2:00pm
For more information about the team click here.
Good gardening and best wishes,
Michael and Joy Michaud
www.seaspringseeds.co.uk / For growing vegetables
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