'Vegies...Better Homegrown'

Gardener:Sarah the Gardener from Yates

Date:16 Oct 2023

Blog Type:Vegetables

Well, the important election is over, and the results are out…  

The top 10 vegies as decided by the nation are:

1.  Tomato

2.  Broccoli

3.  Kūmara

4.  Carrot

5.  Peas

6.  Spinach

7.  Asparagus

8.  Beetroot

9.  Cabbage

10.  Silverbeet 

I’m personally surprised that broccoli rates so high.  I mean, I like it, but it certainly wouldn’t be in the top 3 of my favourite vegetables to eat or grow! 

There were also losers…

Top 10 most hated vegies

1.  Kale

2.  Okra

3.  Broadbeans

4.  Swede

5.  Brussel sprouts

6.  Celery

7.  Silverbeet

8.  Asparagus

9.  Beetroot

10.  Cabbage

Oh, how Kale has fallen!  Not a superfood now!  I still like it – I dry it to a powder and add it to things for a bit of a boost.  It goes surprisingly well as a popcorn sprinkle with lashings of melted butter!   And I would have broadbeans at the top of this list – but that’s just me.

This week is also Yates National Gardening Week, and the theme is 'Vegies...Better Homegrown', trying to let everyone else know something we already know and love and that is growing your own vegies is the best thing ever in more ways than one.  If you pop over to the National Gardening Week tab on the Yates website – the page next to ours on the Community drop-down menu you can see some gardening ‘hacks’ and even a few instructional videos and an appearance from Fennel the Cat – she’s kinda famous. 

I don’t know how I did it, but I got the garden sorted to within an inch of its life.  It was weed free and tidy, and the visitors loved it, even though it was a tad windy and rainy.  I breathed a sigh of relief and became a tiny bit less stressed.  But I can’t completely relax, not only is planting weekend coming up, but also the Ramble in six weeks’ time – I need to keep up the momentum.  

Top tips for planting out –

If it is too cold still, it is ok to wait.  The average frost-free date in the north is Labour Weekend and in the south Canterbury Show Day.  Both are moveable dates but as much as 3 weeks!  And as an average – this is the middle date of the frost free-ness and there could be frosts after this date.  If I remember rightly last year there was snow down south in Nov.   This isn’t the only time seedlings can be planted and we have the whole 2nd half of spring to go.

Harden plants off.  Take time to let plants get used to the transition from the safe warmth to the unpredictable and often cooler outdoors. But protect from slugs, snails, birds, possums and chickens.  If the change in living conditions is too dramatic they could sulk or die. 

Seaweed Tonic is your friend. Soak seedlings before planting will help ease transplant shock and promote root development among other things.  It is one of my ‘go tos’ at this time of year.  But remember it isn’t a food.  Check out all of the good things it does here:  https://www.yates.co.nz/products/fertilisers-tonics/certified-organic/yates-thrive-natural-seaweed-tonic/

I would also like to reach out where disaster has struck.  The high winds Helen The Flower Lady experienced over the weekend was devastating and after all the work she has put in if it was me I would have cried!  We are such a wonderful supportive community that if we could, I’d grab a minivan and gather everyone one up and head on down to help with the clean-up.  But unfortunately, that isn’t possible so instead the Team at Yates will be sending her a much-needed Encouragement Award.  Helen, in the face of everything lost it isn’t much, but I hope it lifts your spirits a little. 

And finally – our lucky random winner of the weekly free packet of seeds is Euqinom.  The seeds will be on their way to you very soon.

Keep posting your wonderful updates to increase your chances of being next week’s winner!

I hope you all have a fabulous week in the garden and as always – if you want to get in touch leave a comment below.

Sarah the Gardener: o)

'Vegies...Better Homegrown'