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sprouts
Author: Michael Kelly
I went on a sobering visit to a couple of our biggest field veg growers this week: Paul Brophy in Kildare who is the largest grower of broccoli in the state and the Weldon Brothers (Martin and Enda) in Swords who supply the majority of the Brussels Sprouts crop.
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Michael Kelly
Author: Michael Kelly
Soil. Well, it’s just dirt really, isn’t it? It’s something to be cleaned off our boots and scrubbed off our hands, right? When I started growing my own food, I didn’t have any respect for the soil that the veg was growing in. My focus was on the seed, the plants, the vegetables. The soil was actually a source of annoyance to me - it had to be dug, raked, hoed, rotovated, coaxed and cajoled.
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Michael Kelly
Author: Michael Kelly
There’s been a sudden drop in nighttime temperatures which it has to be said can’t be unexpected given the time of year. Still, with the kids back to school as well, it’s a fairly dramatic switch in season from summertime to autumnal.
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Michael Kelly
Author: Michael Kelly
One of the great lessons I’ve learned in my time as a GIYer is that the sowing season doesn’t stop at the end of Spring. In fact, if you want a consistent supply of vegetables over the winter, and particularly in the difficult “gap” months of March, April and May, then this is a crucially important time of the year to be sowing seeds.
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GIY June
Author: Michael Kelly
Like most GIYers I did a little rain dance with the arrival of rain after nearly a month of drought conditions. What a fickle bunch we are! Don’t get me wrong, I’d much prefer a little heatwave to our more standard climate, but the daily watering outside was somewhat of a chore. I suppose that beautiful warm sunshine by day followed by a decent shower of rain at night would be the ideal weather pattern for this time of the year. That’s not much to ask is it?
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Michael Kelly
Author: Michael Kelly
It’s a nice surprise to discover that what you have considered a real nuisance in the veg patch, could in fact turn out to be a blessing. I’ve been plagued with chickweed for well over a year now in the small polytunnel.
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Michael Kelly
Author: Michael Kelly
It is fair to say that it has been a long and thoroughly miserable winter, with almost 6 months of grim weather at this stage. The impact has been minimal enough for the home-grower but we should of course spare a thought for the people who make a living from food production, particularly commercial growers and farmers.
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GIY Eat Together
Author: Michael Kelly
There’s a great scene from Michael Moore’s 2015 documentary Where to Invade Next that focuses on school dinners. He visits a small rural town in France and goes to the ‘best place to eat in town’ – the local school’s cafeteria. In France, they consider school lunch to be part of the teaching day.
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Winter Veg
Author: Michael Kelly
As we move towards sowing time, my inner critic is active again, goading me to get started on work in the veg patch. Every time I look out the window at the veg patch, or visit it to grab a leek or some parsnips for the dinner, it starts up its never-ending critical commentary.
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Apples from Ardkeen
Author: Michael Kelly
I am a massive fan of apples and the “apple a day keeps the doctor away” lessons of youth have stayed with me all my life. I’ve often thought it strange however, that such a traditional saying must surely have originated at a time when it would have been difficult to follow the advice and eat an apple each day all year round.
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