Seen at The Festival of the Tree

...if you would be happy all your life, plant a garden ~ Chinese proverb

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Forcing the Issue



I've never tried the traditional method of forcing before, but have decided to try it this year, in an effort to increase the variety of produce from my plot over a longer harvesting season. The traditional forced crops include rhubarb, seakale and chicory and I have indeed just put a bucket over my rhubarb on the plot to stir the buds I can just see on the surface into life. However, I spotted in Grow Your Own magazine, that beetroot can also be forced, so I dug up some of my 'Bull's Blood' on Sunday and bought them home to give it try out on the patio. I cut off the tops and put 4 roots per pot yesterday. I then covered each pot with a large terracotta 'long tom' pot with a stone over the top to block out the light. If this is successful, I should be harvesting some nice salad leaves in a few weeks time. I'll let you know how I get on.

4 comments:

  1. A good experiment, one I have never heard of, I look forward to seeing the result. I have got rhubarb in a large pot, I didn't set out to force it, but I have it covered to keep off any frost or snow which we may have, as this can spell disaster for any plant. x

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  2. Didn't know you could force rhubarb. I think we're going to try to grow some this summer...and perhaps force it next spring!

    Katie at GardenPunks

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  3. Hi Katie,

    I think it's well worth a try as the sticks are meant to be more tender and sweeter when forced. You need to let the plants grow for a season before forcing them, so that the plant has time to establish itself first.

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  4. Louise - it looks like you might be forcing it after all! Have you had a peek to see what's happening?

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