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Organic Hummus
 
Slater's Organics Update - July 2013

Bob summed up the weather in June as follows: unseasonably cool days with the occasional mild spell. But at least the mainly dry days meant that work in the garden could carry on, and Bob was able to plant out all the courgettes and the majority of our summer and autumn brassicas. The latter had to be covered in horticultural fleece to stop the pigeons, pheasants and partridges eating the young transplants. These grow extremely well under the fleece, as do the weeds; but once the brassicas have put on some growth the fleece can be lifted and the weeds controlled by using the strimmer – very carefully!

We had some bad news from our seed suppliers, who informed us that our winter leek seeds were in fact onions. (There is no visible difference between onion and leek seeds, and the seedlings are also indistinguishable until they are about three or four inches tall; at this stage the leek turns into a leaf, almost grass-like, whereas the onion retains its tube-like form.) Bob sowed the replacement seeds as soon as they arrived, but they will not be ready for planting out until much later than usual; we shall just have to cross our fingers and hope the plants will put on sufficient growth to survive the winter. On the plus side, Bob planted out the 'wrong' seedlings, and they have grown into excellent spring onions.

Our strawberries are now ready, and are of excellent quality.  Due to the wet spring the plants were able to produce superb fruits, with that extra flavour organic strawberries have (not that we are biased!) The temptation to partake of a juicy berry and enjoy the wonderful taste of summer often proves too much for Bob when he is filling a punnet for customers. Our daughter Mary is planning a weekend visit, and very kindly volunteered to spend a day at the garden helping out – but not until she had ascertained that there would still be a plentiful supply of strawberries when she came.

We had been running out of straw for our compost heap, but our landlords came to the rescue last month with six large bales which had been on the outside of their stack, and had already started to decay. These will be added to our existing heap, along with our own plant waste, to provide next year's compost.

You might be forgiven for not actually spotting the current compost heap at the moment, as it bears an uncanny resemblance to a bed of potatoes. This is because potatoes discarded onto the heap when we were still packing and delivering boxes have made the most of their surroundings and grown wonderfully; they will be ready for lifting towards the end of this month, and if previous years are anything to go by, will provide the Slater household with  delicious potatoes throughout the autumn.

In last month's newsletter we did say that we would be organising an open day this month; however, due to unforeseen circumstances we will be unable to do so at present. We hope to arrange a suitable day in September – watch this space. 

Jane Slater
Slater Organics

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Arthur St Trading Ltd, 2 Woodyard Cottages, Jubilee Lane, Rise. HU11 5BN | Telephone: 07949 805695 | Email: info@arthursorganics.com
A Workers Co-operative registered in England. | Organic Certification GB-ORG-05. | Reg No: 3843444. | VAT No: 842 9001 43.