An abundance of produce is now flowing from the farm as we emerge from the ‘hungry gap’. The summer is off to a quick start (unlike last year!) and the unforgiving pace of the season is set. The extreme heat has stretched their irrigation capacity to the limit – they were all relieved to see some decent rainfall over the weekend, fingers crossed for a bit more!
Shillingford Organics has been blessed with a gentle, relatively mild spring; thus, the new season crops are thriving, and they have come through the ‘hungry gap’ relatively quickly.They are now harvesting an abundance of crops. Joining the sugarsnap peas: the first carrots, French beans, courgettes, parsley, basil and a few cucumbers have come from their tunnels, along with field crops of lettuce, salad leaves, dill, salad turnips, radish, Calabrese broccoli, kales, spring greens, broad beans, green onions, green garlic, kohlrabi, and the first few beetroot. They’ve also got a few punnets of raspberries and tayberries going to the market this week – they’re only around for a few weeks so get them while you can!
In fact, currently, the only item in their Standard veg boxes which is not from the farm is potatoes, and even their early potatoes are looking good so they should start harvesting them later next week. Tomatoes are not too far behind.
By July they enter the season of plenty, which continues through till Christmas. This is a fact which seems to be lost with the supermarkets, who are often importing produce which can very easily be produced in the UK.
Spread the Word!
Please do tell your friends and colleagues that it is an exciting time of the year to start eating local produce. Why not sign-up for a veg box and enjoy the fantastic flavour and health benefits that local, in-season food has to offer, with minimal impact on the environment?
Shillingford is harvesting their first crop of strawberries. They have planted these as bare-root transplants last autumn, using four different varieties. Thus they should get a spread of fruit from late May to mid-July. Unfortunately, there were no ‘organic’ plants available last year and the Soil Association regulation dictates that these strawberries have to be termed as ‘non organic’. Their aim is to produce future plants from runners from their own plants and thus the fruit from these will be defined as ‘organic.’
You can currently buy these in small and large punnets (200g and 300g) from their online shop, farmer’s markets, and honesty stall.