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  • Writer's pictureLiz Kameen

Asparagus ferns and inter-planting tomatoes

Half-way through May. Strawberries are starting to ripen and we had our first few broad beans from the tunnel last week in the shop, exciting times.

WIlson Trophy Chris Kameen
In racing / grinning mode

It's always slightly surreal when we leave the world of veg and veg boxes and tap back into the world of dinghy sailing which is where Chris spent a good part of his life pre/during/post university. This weekend we sailed together (thank you Natalie for watering!) in an amazing event called the Wilson Trophy which is held in West Kirby. It was a lot of fun - around 200 people sailing! - but it's remarkably nice to come back to the peace and calm of the veg routine again.

Here's a video from the farm where we've been buying our British asparagus from, giving a bit of info about the asparagus ferns - they're huge!

In the field:

Harvested chard, salad, spinach, rhubarb and broad beans. Flail-mowed all the purple sprouting broccoli, kale and chard in the small polytunnel. Planted out french climbing beans where chard was, and put canes in for those to grow up. Took tarps off a couple more beds and planted out 2 beds of leeks. Planted out 40 tomato plants in between the lettuces which we'll be harvesting next week. We were a bit worried about putting them in in case there were greenfly that transferred to the lettuces but we did a check and hopefully all ok.

lettuces and tomatoes in polytunnel
lettuces inter-planted with tomatoes

Pricked out cavalo nero, kohlrabi, tomatoes. Sown more cucumbers (apparently there's due to be a cucumber shortage this year!).

In the boxes:

Small - cherry tomatoes, sweet potatoes, leeks, clementines, Prion salad or spinach

Regular - leeks, asparagus, spring greens, cucumber, kohlrabi, Prion chard* and oranges

Potatoes looking ok this week, but carrots and onions still a bit jaded.

*We can't believe how much swiss chard is selling for at the moment and we've got such a good crop of it - know it's not everyone's favourite, but give it another chance if you can! :) Here's a chard gratin recipe one of you has sent through.

This week the small boxes had UK tomatoes and the regular boxes had UK asparagus, both of which are really expensive. We could have bought tomatoes half the price from Europe and put something else in the box, but we're trying to support the UK farms as much as we can, and hopefully our customers are on board with that!

In the shop:

Plenty of - potatoes, sweet potatoes, Palermo red peppers, chestnut mushrooms, garlic

Limited - cherry & heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, leeks (last of UK), carrots, onions, chard / spinach / salad / lettuce / broad beans / cavalo nero from Prion

Fruit - clementines, lemons, oranges, bananas

More asparagus in next week.

Also: hen and quail eggs, sourdough bread, apple juice, other organic pantry staples and organic beer. Ask us when you're in and we can tell you what we have/prices.

Recipe inspiration:

Some hungry gap recipes here from Riverford. Risotto is always a good comfort meal to turn to that somehow turns pretty much any veg into something a bit more special.

have a good week


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