Otago Daily Times



Potato crops can be harvested before the tops have died right away from the plants. In small gardens, digging early enables the area to be used for winter greens such as silverbeet or spring cabbage, or for a green manure crop (oats, peas, lupins) to be sown. Lift the tubers on a dry day and store them in a cool, dry place away from daylight. Old drawers or shallow boxes lined with newspaper are ideal for potato storage.

The success of winter and spring crops depends on work done now.

Mulch around the crops with compost to retain moisture, feed with liquid manure to encourage leafy growth and hoe regularly to control weeds. Hoeing also exposes to the air the upper layers of the soil, where oxygenlovi­ng bacteria live.

Broccoli can still be planted but it is really too late for Savoy cabbages or Brussels sprouts, except in warmer northern districts. Fastmaturi­ng hardy Asian vegetables, such as tatsoi, can still be sown and will stand over winter.

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