"Now August comes with a dreamy haze of heat"

"Now August comes with a dreamy haze of heat"

* quote by Gladys Faber 

Flower colours of hot yellows, oranges and purples reflect the sultry days of summer. Water well in dry spells - especially beans, cucumbers, marrows, leeks and celery. Add mulches after watering – grass mowings, straw or homemade leaf mould or compost can be used.

If you have bare soil after harvesting, sow some green manures to feed your soil. Vetch and clover rapidly cover bare patches and fix nitrogen. (Both need digging in after flowering before any seed sets). Phacelia is another that germinates quickly; bees and other useful insects love its beautiful lilac flowers.

Sow direct outdoors or in individual modules for planting out later

Spring cabbage, kale, perpetual spinach, Swiss chard, kohl rabi and turnips. Autumn-sown Japanese onions, try Senshyu Yellow, or Toughball to harvest next June. Sow seed in August or sets in September. Think oriental stir fries and oriental greens (mizuna, chopsuey greens, mustards), pak choi, and Chinese cabbage

Sow winter salads:

Winter Lettuce - varieties such as Arctic King or Winter Density for harvesting in November and December
Winter purslane, Claytonia or Miner's lettuce - produces small, mild tasting, succulent leaves.
Lambs Lettuce or Corn Salad - soft texture and mild flavour. Lasts well throughout the winter, and you can eat the flowers in spring too.
Land cress or American cress – very hardy, excellent substitute for watercress.
Winter Radish - Mooli, China Rose and Black Spanish.
Spring Onions – Winter Hardy White Lisbon
Amaranth - for leaf production
Chicory - Red and Sugarloaf
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