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Gardening - Summer Vegetables

Monday, 17 May 2010

Today we are going to be growing some popular summer vegetables that are now ready to be planted.
Robust beetroot, plump tomatoes, sunny sweetcorn and crisp courgettes taste all the sweeter when grown in your own garden.
We are also seeing how the TAS Garden is coming along and how our plants have progressed in the last few weeks.
We will be harvesting some of our lettuce and herbs and showing before and after pictures of our garden transformation!

Eugene Higgins - Vegetable Visionary

Now although our garden is coming along great we think it's time to add in some summer vegetables to our TAS Patch.

Beetroot - So En Vogue

Those reddish / purply superfood orbs are very fashionable at the moment with many chefs added them to their menus including our very own Lorraine Fitzmaurice who made beetroot soup and a beetroot chocolate cake back in September!!

They are also surprisingly easy to grow yourself!
. Sow Outdoors - compost and manure mix.
. Soak seeds in warm water before sowing. (This kick-starts the seeds and helps remove any residual chemicals.)
. Thinly sow in 1cm deep drills, 10cm apart.
. Expect your first crop in 12 weeks, or baby beets sooner.
. Pests: Birds when the beets are young.
. Prevention: Cover new plants with netting or a plastic bottle cut in half with the top open. Remove two weeks after planting.
. Be careful not to overwater.
. It is ready once it's the size of a golf ball.
Gardeners' World Magazine - April 2010

Courgette - A great veg for beginners!

This delicious vegetable has a lovely flavour and is a great addition to salads and stir fries! Black Beauty and Di Nizza variety are great for their unusual shapes and great flavours!

They are easy and quick to grow!
. Sow Indoors / Outdoors - compost and manure mix.
. Love a sheltered sunny spot
. Place two seeds 12cm deep into a pot - remove the weaker plant if they both germinate.
. Plant 90cm apart.
. Water regularly and saturate the roots during the summer.
. Pests: slugs
. Cut courgettes when they are 10cm - 15cm.
Gardeners' World Magazine - April 2010

Sweetcorn - Summer's Sunshine

Nothing says summer like the yellow glow of a fresh corn on the cob! Whether it's scattered into a salad or charring on the BBQ, fresh sweetcorn is a real summer treat!
. Grow indoors or outdoors.
. Loves free-draining, moisture retentive soil and lots of manure.
. Ready-grown plants will provide cobs earlier
. If growing indoors fill a 7.7cm pot with compost, make a 2.5cm hole and drop two seeds in. Leave on a windowsill to germinate.
. Once 2cm tall plant in a shady place outdoors discarding weaker ones.
. Keep them well watered and weed free.
. They are ready when the silky tassels at the end turn brown.

Tomatoes: Sun Fiends
Tomatoes grow best in w

arm conditions such as greenhouses but it is also possibly to grow them outside like our very own Kevin Dundon! Sweet and tasty tomatoes make them worthwhile and with a little bit of care you can have your own tasty crop for summer salads and BBQ burger toppers!
. Can be grown indoors (greenhouse) or outdoors (choose an outside variety)
. Outside varieties should be grown in a sheltered sunny place.
. Avoid overwatering seedlings, it may cause rot.
. Don't transfer young plants to large pots until they start to flower.
. Don't overcrowd - good air circulation is essential.
. Water regularly and check the compost.
Gardeners' World - April 2010

Update on our GYO (Grow your Own) Vegetable Garden - Update!
The TAS Garden 'How does your garden grow?'

At the end of March we grew some Spring vegetables in some unusual places!!
We used everything from tyres, sinks and even teapots to house our new vegetable patch!
We wanted to show that it is possible to grow your own veg no matter how much space you have or what unusual objects you pick up along the way!!
We have been keeping track of our vegetables and adding to them along the way.
We started out with an old kitchen sink, some tyres and some other odds and ends.
Although not yet ready to harvest our spring vegetables are coming along very well.
Although it might seem like an unusual home our potatoes are sprouting beautifully.
We also have watched as our beans bloom and our herbs grow bigger and stronger

Plants were kindly supplied by Balckbanks Gardening Centre - 754 Howth Road, Raheny, Dublin 5
Contact Blackbanks Garden Centre on 01 832 7047 for further details.
Contact Eugene through his website