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October 8, 2009 / Malcolm Dalebö

Plot 18 08/10/09: At last some rain

At last the drought we have had through from early September is now over, and we now have had some real rain, and not just a few short showers. The last of the summers crops are still hanging in there.
We are still picking cucumbers, French climbing beans, squashes, courgettes, carrots, beetroot and spring onions.
We have finished harvesting the spinach, marrows and pumpkins and dug up the last of the years potatoes. 
The last few tomatoes are still ripening and the chillies are still growing away like mad in the polytunnel.
We are waiting on the ‘Enorma’ runner beans to die down, so that we can harvest next years seed.

Most of our efforts are now going into the planting of the winter crops. we have already planted out the Savoy cabbages and in the tunnel at home we have growing from the seed onions, spring cabbage, cauliflower, lettuce and broccoli raab.
Although it has broccoli’s name, broccoli raab (aka Rapini) is not related to broccoli.  It is, however, closely related to turnips which is probably why the leaves look like turnip greens. Lots of broccoli-like buds appear here and there but a head never forms. It is grown as much for its long-standing, tasty mustard-like tops as for their multiple small florets with clusters of broccoli-like buds. Good-quality broccoli raab will have bright-green leaves that are crisp, upright, and not wilted. When harvesting, avoid ones with leaves that are wilted, yellowing, or have dark green patches of slime.

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