The other day I was in the kitchen garden just checking things over and seeing how things were getting on. This year I am particular pleased with the brassicas, especially my apparent success with the swede.
A couple of months ago I had direct sown some chard, turnips and swede all side by side, the rest of the bed being planted up with cabbage, parsnips, beetroot and celeriac. The bed was then covered with insect proof mesh to keep out everything from the cabbage root fly to the pigeons. The weather initially was a little hit and miss, but eventually some of the seeds which were sown started to germinate and grow.
Given the dry June that we had it became necessary to uncover the bed and drench the ground around the plants once or even twice a week. It was at this time I noticed just how well the swede and turnips were growing. That is until one particular day, it suddenly dawned on me that the turnips were putting on a lot of healthy top growth, but not much was developing in the way of a root. What I had initially had thought was the turnips were in fact chard, hence the swede that I was so proud of were in fact the turnips. What happened to the swede? who knows, it seems that the seeds never actually germinated. It just goes to show that whenever sowing direct you should always label the rows.