Boozy Raspberries

Hops spread round the base of Autumn Bliss plants, before the canes are cut back
Hops spread round the base of Autumn Bliss plants, before the canes are cut back

Apart from some picking (a little kale, rainbow chard, mixed salad leaves and lots of leeks still around) and a little seed sowing for micro leaves this week, there’s not a lot going on. Things have shut down for the winter now growing-wise; although I’m hoping that the sunny spell over the weekend might have encouaged the leafy things to grow a little bigger, ready for Christmas week. So it’s just a matter of pottering around, tidying up, and sorting things out ready for next year; plus working out my rotations for tunnels and field next year, and starting to order seeds – I’ll need to sow chillies and more lettuces in February, which I’m sure will creep up quickly on me like last year.

One thing I’m trying out now is mulching the raspberries with spent hops from my chums at Willy Good Ale at Hartley Farm; I like to mulch the raspberries canes with something, and tried green waste compost last year, to help block out the weeds a bit, and give them a feed (and the worms a treat). I think the hops will break down quicker, which will give them more of a nitrogen boost; but will probably need an extra mulch in spring/early summer to keep the weeds at bay. It’d be great to think the hops also give the raspberries a nice beery flavour, but somehow I don’t think that’ll happen…

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