I’ve been keeping busy here the last few weeks planting veggies for fall and winter harvest. This year I’m continuing to experiment with woven weed barrier fabric as a mulch in the vegetable garden. The material I’m using is four feet wide, and listed as “professional grade 3.2 oz” material. Last fall I planted some of the fall greens the ‘old’ way, mulched with paper and straw, and a few plants set out in holes I cut in the fabric. The ones in the weed barrier fabric did quite well, so this year I set out all the kale and collards in fabric.
I started those seeds back in mid June, then set out the plants on July 31st. This year I planted 32 collards, 8 kale and 2 cabbages. Thanks to ample rain, the plants are all growing nicely. I will have more kale planted in the winter greenhouse, and I plan to start those seeds indoors soon. I didn’t set out any broccoli this fall, since I grow sprouting types in the winter greenhouse and those usually keep us well supplied.
This week I sowed seeds for turnips, turnip greens and a few daikon radishes. Those seeds went in where a row of spring planted bush beans had been growing. I pulled those plants, which were done producing, and began prepping the bed for sowing seeds.
I use a culinary torch to cut narrow slits in the weed barrier fabric. The heat keeps the edges from fraying, and I find it actually easier than using scissors for the task.
I recently got a new trenching hoe from Lee Valley Tools that has a narrow blade made for breaking up soil and making furrows. I used it to carefully make a shallow furrow in the soil under the slit I had cut with the torch.
With that done, it was an easy task to sow the seeds and cover lightly with soil. I gave all the seeds a good watering, and they should be up in a few days time. I will come back and thin them in a couple of weeks time. I grew turnips and turnip greens this way last fall, and they did quite well.
I hope you have enjoyed this tour of the garden here in August, and I’ll be back soon with more happenings from Happy Acres.