Andrew McMillion kindly picked me up early on Friday morning from the night train at Oslo airport and we drove together to the location of the KVANN / Norwegian Seed Savers annual meeting in Leikanger on the Sognefjord. As we were to arrive earlier than the other board members, I suggested going to Balestrand, about an hour further on as I’d heard that Norway’s largest Monkey Puzzle tree (apeskrekk) could be seen there! Andrew didn’t hesitate as he wanted also to go to Balestrand as he actually had family roots just a kilometer away from the tree!! There was much more than that though! It was an amazing day, first the wonderful trip over the mountains in perfect weather…to see what else we experienced, see the album!!
I harvested Ulluco and Oca tubers which I grow on indoors from the first frost to the end of the year!This is probably the last time I grow Ulluco for a while due to the UK advice to destroy all Ulluco currently being grown due to the danger of non-native viruses hopping over to other more important crops!
Wishing all my friends, family and all the amazing folk I’ve met live and online this year a very happy green year in which things WILL begin to change for the better for our wonderful planet earth!
However, things are not changing for the better for ulluco (Ullucus tuberosus) in the bottom row in this animation as this is the last year I’m growing this wonderfully colourful root crop which I’ve been growing now since 2007 (see the comments below for the reason for this!)
The top two rows are oca (Oxalis tuberosus). Both are from the Andes and were harvested yesterday indoors (grown in large pots brought inside before the first frostsin October).
Animation by my daughter Avellana Hazel
Planted my garlic and sowed parsnip today on my 33 year old raised beds. No wooden edges, just raised using the soil where the paths are and adding compost year after year and never treading on the beds. The beds are about 1.2m wide so that I can reach into the middle from the paths. Note the diagonal planting which allows you to plant rows closer and increase yield!
Red-back in the garden? Well, it has a red back but it’s Enoplognatha ovata (Candystripe spider / rødstripet kule-edderkopp) and it’s not at all dangerous!!
It seems it’s the first time this species has been registered in my county!
In early April 2016, on my study tour to Japan, I was invited to the mountain home of Ken Takewaki (and Masama) for a short visit. I wrote about Ken’s home and the shock of waking to new snow after 20C the day before in the lowlands back in April (see http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=6357)! Despite the snow, Ken took us on a trip around the local area (Sugadaira in Nagano) and we had a walk around a local wetland nature reserve, before Ken took us on a long walk up through the forest where he had recently taken over a piece of land in a clearing to grow vegetables. All the signs were in Japanese, so I don’t know the names of many of the plants we saw, but here’s the pictures: