Winter here in Yeppoon hasn’t yet appeared, with only a hint of the cool weather to come. We are harvesting endive, rocket, silverbeet, snow peas, basil and beetroots.
This week we have planted sugar loaf cabbage seedlings, which are an early maturing variety, hoping to harvest and make sauerkraut from them in about three months’ time. From the punnet we divided them up the best we could, poked holes in the mulch 30cm apart and planted into our already prepared soil, which we loaded up with compost and manure earlier in the year. Any we couldn’t divide successfully we left together and we will thin them out as they grow. Cabbages are a member of the brassica family and are heavy feeders so we plan to fertilise them fortnightly.
Also on our planting list are eggplants. We chose the variety Little Finger, because we have had them growing in pots in the past and were astounded by the vigour and persistence of their yield. Though the fruit is smaller than the well known Supreme variety, they have a great flavour and we use them in all sorts of dishes from Asian stir fries to Italian pastas. We planted them 50cm apart in a spare corner of the vegie patch. We chose to have them out of the way as their long fruiting life tends to throw out our rotational system.
Our garden lacks potassium, so we applied potash to our soil before we planted, to help the plants flower and fruit better. We know we have a potassium deficiency because our tomatoes, peas and Supreme eggplants weren’t flowering. They received their first application of potash one month ago and we are now eating fresh snow-peas and waiting for our tomatoes and eggplants to ripen.
We have noticed the bugs are starting to ease off but we are still keeping an eagle eye on our pak choy for caterpillars, and vegie bugs (shield bugs) in the eggplants.