Dra­matic sea­sonal start to Novem­ber grow­ing

Taupo & Turangi Weekender - - Festive Food & Wine -

What a dra­matic sea­son for gar­den­ing we had in Novem­ber — late frosts, heavy rain, cold tem­per­a­tures.

My hair­dresser who lives in Taupo¯ lost her en­tire veg­etable gar­den to frost in the last two weeks of last month and had to start all over again.

My well es­tab­lished beans were taken by Mr Frost. For­tu­nately I hadn’t planted toma­toes or any of the other ten­der crops. De­cem­ber will be warmer more con­sis­tent, we have to think pos­i­tive.

I was read­ing a old gar­den­ing book yes­ter­day. It spoke of weed­ing with a long-han­dled hoe in one hand and a glass of fes­tive bub­bles in the other — the joys of gar­den­ing!

I’m a big fan of beans of any sort. Sort­ing through my seeds, I came across a few half pack­ets of seeds past their use-by date so I soaked them overnight and put them be­tween a few sheets of damp news­pa­per. Af­ter a few days, some put out shoots. These I’ve planted and they’ve taken off, so it pays not to throw any old stock away.

If you have chil­dren vis­it­ing, show them your veg­etable gar­den, where food comes from and how it grows, show them how to har­vest, pre­pare and cook. They are more likely to take an in­ter­est in healthy food.

If you are go­ing away for Christ­mas and have pot­ted plants, col­lect them all into one spot which makes life eas­ier for your neigh­bour to wa­ter. Tell them to help them­selves to let­tuce, peas etc. It’s good for the plants — the more you pick, the more they will pro­duce, and not go to seed.

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