Rich pickings at Sissinghurst Castle Garden

A view into the veg garden at Sissinghurst

The change in season is very apparent on the plot this month, with many beds appearing to lie dormant, many crops are beginning to come to an end and the colourful displays starting to fade.

October is when we must begin work on the asparagus beds. We will be cutting down the stalks that have left over the summer as the plant has now had time to regenerate after a busy season. Also, this prevents any damage to the crown from the winter winds.

It is also the month when we will start pruning and tying in our loganberries and blackberries canes, to provide a strong support for next year’s fruit. All essential maintenance jobs.

In keeping with the month, our amazing pumpkins and squashes are now being sold in the plant shop, main shop and restaurant in an array of shapes and sizes. This delicious ingredient ideal as part of an autumnal meal, as well as great for carving at Halloween later this month.

Pumpkins on the plot in September
Pumpkins on the plot in September

On the plot this month 

Sowing

Winter Salads– We will be sowing Mustard ‘Ruby Streaks’ and Mustard ‘Golden Streaks’ which will be grown in our polytunnels. This ensures that we will be able to  continue to supply the restaurant with produce throughout the winter months.

Potting on

Florence Fennel– We will be potting on the seedlings  which we will plant out later in our polytunnels.

Harvesting

Leeks– We have started harvesting our leeks for the restaurant. We have used camomile as a companion planting this year, as it is said to improve the vigour and taste. Varieties we are growing include ‘Northern Lights’ - a variety whose leaves change from a bluish-green to purple as the season progresses, and ‘Stamford’ -an early and reliable performer.

Kale– ‘Black Tuscany’, ‘Red Russian’ and ‘Pentland Brigg’ are to name but a few of the varieties that we have been growing this year.

Parsnips– It is now time to harvest our direct sown parsnips. We have grown ‘F1 Gladiator’ this year, and they certainly seem to live up to their name.

Come and visit us on  Monday 9 October between 2-4pm for our final tour of the poly tunnels.