After a slow start to the season, with November and December temperatures quite a bit cooler than usual, and with hotter weather since New Year, the vegie garden is now becoming increasingly productive.
Try to get into your vegie patch at least a couple of times a week to keep harvesting whatever is ready, especially the squashes, which seem to be able to go from child-size to senior citizen size in only a day!
You also need to be regularly checking that all your vegies are watered frequently enough so the soil moisture remains relatively even and doesn't dry out.
Most vegies benefit from being watered at ground level so the leaves don't get wet, and in the early to mid-morning which allows the plants to dry out and not go into the evening hours with wet leaves, which can lead to disease.
If beetroot, peas, dwarf beans and sweet corn are sown now, there is just enough time for them to ripen before the warm weather ends.
Throughout January and February is time to get cauliflower, brussels sprouts and cabbages and the last sowing of broccoli into the ground.
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Potatoes starting to flower is a sign that the tubers have begun to form. If the leaves have started to yellow, you can start harvesting and when all the leaves have yellowed, you can dig up the whole plant.
'Bandicooting' is where you can dig gently around the base of the plants and take new potatoes from the roots of the plant without harvesting the whole crop, leaving the smaller potatoes to continue growing.
However, these early, delicious potatoes have a very thin skin and don't store well so are best eaten as soon as you dig them.
Green potatoes are poisonous, so don't eat them! Potatoes turn green when exposed to sunlight so keep hilling the soil or mulch over them and ensure you store them in a cool, dark room with low or no humidity and in a well-ventilated container.
It is possible to store potatoes in the ground, as long as you don't need the space for other crops and you can remember where they are located after the tops have gone!
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