The ever changing UK weather as always is a hot topic. After weeks of rain and cloudy skies, we are enjoying the sun and heat and hope this provides you with a renewed energy to get back into the garden. The very wet last few weeks has given many garden pests the chance to thrive from black fly to slugs, red lily beetles and white fly. Fortunately the Vegepod keeps many pests out and also protects your plants from heavy rain that can flatten your growing plants.
As the weather heats up, remember to use the in-built misting system by attaching your hose to the attachment on the hood and let your plants have a good drink, either early in the day or when the sun goes down. Don’t forget to enjoy a drink in the garden yourself as well!
What to Plant Now
Your harvests will be coming thick and fast right now, giving you room to sow and grow more. There is still time to sow some more salad seeds and keep those harvests going for much longer and it’s a good idea to try something different as well. If you have grown lots of a particular variety of lettuce such as ‘Lollo Rosso’ why not shake it up and try ‘All Year Around’ or ‘Little Gem’ or for a quick turnaround before planting out some autumn and winter veg, sow some cut and come again leaves. Try sowing cress, mizuna, rocket, mustard, pak choi, pea shoots and spinach for a tasty salad.
During July sow your last Beetroots to see you through to Autumn and why not make it colourful? Rainbow beetroot is a superb mix of orange, red, yellow and white beets that really brighten up a plate with both flavour and vibrancy.
At this time of year, think ahead to the following months. Kale is an excellent crop to overwinter and will grow abundantly in the Vegepod. It looks great too. Full of nutrition, easy to cook and easy to grow! Plant young plants and keep the soil moist. Think about what you love to cook with during the colder months and make plans now. We’ve seen plenty of perfect leeks grown in the pods, another great plant to pop in the compost now.
Image: Thompson & Morgan 'Rainbow Beetroot'
What to Harvest
Harvesting during the summer is one of the great joys of gardening and your Vegepod should be packed full of choices. From sweet and chilli peppers to tomatoes, garlic, spring onions, turnips, peas, lettuce, kohl rabi, edible flowers and so much more. Make sure whenever you harvest to take a trug or container because it is bound to be full of plants to take back to the kitchen.
What to Cook
Forget pickled beetroot, chocolate beetroot cake is where it's at! Not that pickled beetroot isn’t delicious but if you have a lot, baking a beetroot cake is a great way to put some to good use and impress family.
Bake your beetroot in the oven and then blend with cocoa powder, dark chocolate, plain flour, baking powder, caster sugar, mashed banana, sunflower oil. Bake bake in the oven and sprinkling a dusting of icing sugar when the cake has cooled. If you haven’t tried it before, there is a delicate beetroot flavour underneath the chocolate but mostly it makes a wonderfully moist (and mostly healthy) cake!
Don't be afraid to get adventurous in the kitchen with your harvests. Excess produce need not go to waste with smoothies and sauces being excellent ways to maximise your Vegepod harvest.
Image: We love to the look of this Raw Chocolate & Beetroot Cake, Source: Cookidoo (a Thermomix brand).