Planting winter greens

My hothouse is crowdred with seedlings that are going out this week: beetroot, lettuce, basil, dill… And some younger chard, kale and cavolo nero which will go out in about a month.

A lot of our food plants contain some kind of antinutrient, stopping us and other animals from eating all of it. The family spinach belongs to (chenopodaceae, or more simply, “chenopods”) all contain oxalic acid, which is poisonous in large quantities. The other members of this family is chard, silverbeet and beetroot. Oxalic acid is also present in a lot of other green vegetables, but spinach has a very high concentration and I’d be cautious to use too much of it, like in regular juicing. I recently discovered perennial spinach has much less, so this year I’ll plant this instead. The common varieties keep going to seed for me before I have the time to eat them, so hopefully this will solve two problems at once!

And the weekly to-do-list:

Now until Wednesday 4th:

  • Prick out your little seedlings to bigger pots
  • Plant out any raised or bought seedlings for your winter garden and late crops of zuccini, bush beans, cucumber and basil, lettuces etc.
  • Plan your winter garden
  • Plant out your fist lot of winter greens (silverbeet, perennial spinach, kale, cavil nero, winter lettuce, rocket, coriander…) leaving space for a second and maybe third lot
  • Foliar feed Sunday 1st February

Thursday 5th to Thursday 12th – week of the full moon:

  • Water plenty around full moon when the plants really want to grow
  • Foliar feed again on the 8th
  • Take care of your tomatos and peppers, look for shield bugs and speay with neem if needed
  • Start planting flowering bulbs for winter & spring (especially under fruit trees)
  • Sow roots straight into the garden, like carrots, turnips and swedes

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