Sunday 2 January 2011


I had a good look round the garden today, now that things have had a chance to thaw out completely, after the spell of very cold weather we had over Christmas.

I temporarily removed the fleece which has been protecting my last couple of Celeriac plants, and the last few lettuces. I didn't think the Celeriac was going to grow any more, so I pulled up both plants. To be honest, the size of the bulbs was most disappointing - even smaller than the two previous ones

Lots of roots, but not much useable bulb

One of the bulbs was completely soggy - caught by the frost, snow, ice, whatever. I cut it open just for curiosity, to see what it was like in the middle, but there was no denying that it was beyond hope of salvage, so it had to go in the compost bin. Nine months of growing time terminated in an instant!

Anyone like soft centres??

The other bulb, though tiny, looks useable, even if it's just for flavouring some soup, so I cleaned it up and it is now in the fridge awaiting a suitable opportunity (probably thinking "Wow, it's nice and warm in here..")

Hardly a great beauty, but it'll probably taste nice

Also under the fleece were (and are again) my three most promising Tundra cabbages. As most of you will know by now, these poor things have been the subject of every conceivable assault that nature can muster, but they are still alive. One of them is even beginning to look a bit "cabbagey" - in other words, to form a heart.

It had better hurry up, because I'm already thinking about when to dig this bed and incorporate a batch of home-made compost in readiness for planting beans in the Spring... After a quick look, I put the fleece back over the cabbages, not so much to keep them warm as to protect them from the depredations of the fox community. "Out of sight is out of mind", they say...

The cabbages in the other bed (the ones that were at one stage consigned to the compost-bin and then reprieved), having subsequently endured being covered with two inches of snow and frozen solid for 10 consecutive days are amazingly still alive and beginning to produce new leaves! Here is the evidence (notice: picture of cabbage not net this time - wahey!)

Battered Tundra cabbage produces a new leaf

Elsewhere in the garden, the sprouting broccoli is coming on nicely. The little shoots are not so little any more, though I don't expect to be harvesting any of this for another eight to ten weeks.

Purple Sprouting Broccoli "Red Arrow"

This next picture was taken using the Pin-hole setting on my camera. It is supposed to highlight the centre of the picture, giving emphasis to the main subject, whilst "de-emphasising" the outer part. I'm going to have to work on this one.

Purple Sprouting Broccoli "Rudolph"

On the ornamental front, I noticed that the first of my dwarf daffodils in pots are poking through now. I have planted two pots each of Tete-a-Tete, Jetfire and Minnow.

Two weeks ago we were firmly in the grip of Winter, and it seemed as if none of our plants could possibly survive. Today, everything seems different, and a lot more hopeful.


  1. I too am surprised by how many plants have maintained their strength against snow and ice.

    And I'm startled by the appearance of bulb tops.

    Unfortunately, I'm coming across walking around slugs. They don't seem to have minded the ice as much as I would have hoped.


  2. Hi Esther; The pests and diseases always seem to be more robust than the "nice" things, don't they? I'm trying hard now to visualise your slugs "walking around". :)

  3. Great to see you were able to recover some of your veggies!
    And also those were some very delicious looking tortillas! I am sure they tasted great

  4. Hi Fer; I watched the video clips on U-Tube that you sent me the links to!

  5. I'm amazed at how quickly the snow melts, and that anything can survive it. Lol, and then you chop them up and eat them, it hardly seems fair, does it? :)

  6. Lovely post, your broccoli plants look much healthier than mine. I'm very impressed by your celeriac too. I must go out tomorrow and look how my bulb tops are faring. I saw several poking through before the snow came.

  7. I hope your cabbage grows quickly and the foxes leave it alone!

  8. Too bad about the Celeriac, but you can always use the leaves, they look very good!

  9. It's amazing how things survive such cold temperatures and spring back in to life. I must check on my purple sprouting broccoli, I've never grown it before so I'm hoping it does ok.

  10. We have just never managed to get celeriac to grow a proper root - doesn't seem to like us.

  11. It makes you wonder what commercial celeriac growers put on their plants to make them produce bulbs the size of footballs - steroids??

  12. Sorry about your celeriac, it is something I want to have a go at now that I have an allotment. Nice job on the cabbage vs. netting battle! Getting to know a new camera always takes time. The broccoli looks as if it will be delicious.

  13. I have to admire all you cold climate gardeners - you have so much more work to do. My garden doesn't even get frost never mind snow, I am not sure I would be so enthusiastic if I had to cope with all those extra chores. Well done!


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