Last Call For Winter Salads
|Raddichio and Rocket - I'm experimenting with a modified square foot style approach for salads in pots ready for picking. All my winter leaves will be added to this arrangement when I've potted up my module sowings|
So now's a good time to plan ahead and make the final salad sowings to see us through the winter months. It's a bit of a race against time, because the ever decreasing daylength and temperature means it's important for sowings to have sufficient time to grow enough leaves before they effectively grind to a halt in October/November.
There's still time to sow the absolute winter stalwarts until mid September: peppery land cress, rocket (I prefer wild), lamb's lettuce and winter purslane. These usually resist whatever the winter throws at them, even when they're left outdoors.
The 52 Week Salad Challenge means I'm also trying some new tastes for this year in the shape of various oriental leaves. I was impressed by everyone's reports of Mizuna doing well at the beginning of the year. I've grown it before but it's tended to remain neglected and overrun by weeds up at the allotment. By shifting my salad growing to home this year means I can keep a closer eye on it and actually pick some. This will be going into my coldframe alongside sowings of mustard ('Red giant') and komatsuna.
I've also sown some 'Bull's Blood' beetroot for their leaves. It might be too late, so we'll see. Turnips for leaves can be sown until mid-September so I'm applying the same thinking for my beetroot!
There's quite a few salad mixes which can be sown year-round for baby leaves, so it's worth looking at your packets to see what possibilities you have in store. I'll be keeping these on hand for emergency windowsill growing should any of my crops fail in the coming months.
Do you have any favourites to add to the list?
NB BBC Breakfast News reported earlier this week the price of iceberg lettuce is 65% up on last year, so now is the perfect time to join the 52 Week Salad Challenge! As well as the above ideas on what you can sow now, my 52 Week Salad Challenge Page has lots of information to help you on your way :)