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Price of a pea


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tagwex
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
Posts: 5150
Location: Co. Wexford

PostPosted: Tue Jul 15, 2014 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is one on Saturday mornings in the nearest town. I had thought about that and there are also others there doing the same thing. Also, there is the additional expense of paying for a stall, bags and possibly 1 staff. I have sown some stuff late and it may not be a success and if I was going to have a stall I reckon I would need to be well stocked with a big variety at all times which I just cannot see happening.
I have convinced myself that passing trade should help me get rid of the surplus, time will tell. I was thinking of a 20kg potato bag full of whatever is in season for 20 or 25. Then in the winter months could do something similar with carrots onions, leeks, turnip, swede, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and potatoes. What I really need to get rid of though is the glut of early potatoes that we should have in a month or so, we are expecting approx. 2 tonne.

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Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Blowin
Rank attained: Vegetable garden tender


Joined: 20 Aug 2008
Posts: 922
Location: Drimoleague, Co Cork

PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 8:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tagwex - Do you detect that a common problem seems to be emerging? You and I each has two mouths to feed yet the two styles are poles apart.

We've just picked and used/frozen pretty much the last of our peas where as yours aren't far out of the ground and you're anticipating a problem with dealing with the crop, in terms of shelling (or not), when it arrives in huge numbers.

By my estimations, your 'early' spuds are about two months behind mine and, once again, you're forecasting an over-production problem in the shape of two tonnes of them.

Like you, I found half a sack of left over onion sets in my local co-op, so decided to have a go with them. I planted mine on 7 March and now have four rows of quite large bulbs that will hopefully soon begin to brown, ready for cropping. I also have some reds that are later, as always, but don't look too bad. Are you going to be able to use all yours when they come?

To create this series of problems you engage a tractor to help with the amount of tillage you have. I do mine with a spade or fork. You recruit help with planting, whereas I do mine myself. I also have time to dig out silt from nearby ditches to improve my soil, and cut things like nettles for runner bean compost and willow for pea boughs.

I genuinely admire the energy and enthusiasm you devote to your garden but feel you'd get a lot more satisfaction out of the exercise if you scaled back on the volume a bit. As for this year's surpluses, why not try offloading them on to a local hotel? They're always looking for 'local produce' to make their menus look a bit more 'haute cuisine'.

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Gemini
Rank attained: Rowan Tree
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree on the hotel idea or local restaurant. It would look really well on their menu that they had local freshly picked produce.
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tagwex
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
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Location: Co. Wexford

PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 11:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do concur with most of what you say and your points are valid. Part of the problem is me, I just cannot do anything in a small way I have to go for the biggest, the best, the most no matter what I do and consequently set my targets too high. This year, I set out to sell some of the produce from the outset, the problem now is that within weeks I need to find an outlet for them and that is the worry. If I can recoup my outlay then I am happy, any more is a bonus and we have ample produce for ourselves too. I have spoken to two people months ago who sell veg by delivering door to door and both said that they would take the surplus from me. I wont do door to door myself (couldn't be bothered with the hassle) and I am not that fussed with what I make from it. I have also spoken to a local restaurant who also said that they would take produce from me but until this actually starts to happen then I will worry about being left with surplus. I guess I am worrying needlessly though as I am stepping into the unknown.

- There is an area of ground here, 0.4 acre and I just had to fill it and I did, some of which involved double/companion planting.
- Peas are averaging 2' high now and pods are showing.
- The early spuds were always going to be sold because as you know they cannot be stored.
- We acquired an additional freezer to cope with the anticipated surplus and I am preparing a shed here for storage.
- There could be 2000 + onions here, but they don't worry me as they store well. My woman is an onionholic and would eat 8 to 10 every day.
- I anticipate that the roadside sales will go well as I have spoken to a few neighbours and they were all interested and word should spread that way.
- The tractor was a must due to the area involved and being a wettish field it just couldn't have gone in any earlier than it did - first week of May, hence some items were late but I did have a considerable amount in plug trays and I did buy semi grown produce from the local garden center too in order to catch up.
- I did all the planting myself last year by hand. The only help I had this year was with planting the potatoes and I didn't even ask for it as the lad who ploughed/rotavated offered in exchange for the use of my mini-digger. I was quite prepared to do it by hand again but I was delighted that they did bring the sower along as we were finished in about 4 hours whereas it would have taken me 3 or 4 days by hand. There are 35 drills at 50 m long.
- With regard to scaling back, that will most likely come with age, I am able to do it now but undoubtedly that will change. Plus I enjoy it but work does get in the way sometimes and when I get home I cannot wait to get out there and potter around.
- Patience is not a virtue of mine, there is a lot of veg here still at a very early stage and I can see gaps in the drills where stuff didn't germinate so next year, when hopefully I will have the polytunnel up I will have established plants to plant out rather than hoping on each seed to germinate. For example I have a bed of 350 parsnips sown almost 5 weeks ago and not a sign of one yet, I found out last week that they take 6 weeks but I was out there weeding and watering that patch wondering was any of them going to grow at all until I found out about the 6 weeks.

_________________
Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Blowin
Rank attained: Vegetable garden tender


Joined: 20 Aug 2008
Posts: 922
Location: Drimoleague, Co Cork

PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fair enough. If you feel the current modus operandi is the preferred option, I can only say good luck but you always seemed to be chasing your tail and I felt you might have needed a bit of helpful comment, e.g. :-

Do you HAVE to cultivate ALL the plot? With the help of plastic sheeting, could you not leave some unused for a year? Why not devote some of it to chickens which will keep the plot weed free and provide eggs - an easily saleable crop if you don't use them all.

Early May is no time to start on a garden. Could you not use your digger to install drainage ditch(es) so that you can get on the ground earlier?

Final thought. Does 'Er Indoors make an appointment to see you?

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tagwex
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
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Location: Co. Wexford

PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chasing my tail is a good way of putting it, always late with the planting times and work gets in the way sometimes too. All comments are welcome blowin, I am learning all the time. About 2/3 of the plot is cultivated, the 1/3 is kinda rough and nearly always in shade. Have been trying to locate used plastic sheeting of late but to no avail, dam farmers either burn or recycle it. Not bothered with chickens. The weed killing and clearing scrub by hand and seed sowing in pots and plug trays would have started in early April. Sowing direct into the ground was mid May. We don't own the place, renting, so we are limited in what we can do. Dam Fianna Fail cost me my house. 'Er Indoors helps out when she can, had her out sowing carrots last night and she does a good bit of weeding - especially the onion beds!
_________________
Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Blowin
Rank attained: Vegetable garden tender


Joined: 20 Aug 2008
Posts: 922
Location: Drimoleague, Co Cork

PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No. I quite understand. If you don't actually own your ground, it's a completely different ball game.
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Good guy
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Joined: 11 Feb 2013
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Location: Donegal

PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2014 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So sorry to hear about your house, Tagwex. That must be a real downer. I hope your sales go well. So much is down to timing, isn't it. It's hard to get timing and quantity right.
My dad was good at it, but he grew fruit and veg all his life, and from Northumberland to Torquay to Fermanagh! So he had lots of experience of different conditions. Unfortunately, I'd need the ouija board to get his advice these days and I seem to have put it somewhere........
I'll always remember my mum, of a Sunday lunch time, with the joint ready to come out of the oven, casting her eyes to heaven when he would walk in the kitchen door with yet another veg for her to cook. Looking back, it's astonishing what a variety he used to grow. My sisters and I aren't in the game at all!
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tagwex
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
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Location: Co. Wexford

PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So you didn't lick your horticultural talents off a stone then?
_________________
Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Good guy
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


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Location: Donegal

PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2014 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, I had a good example to follow. I was just talking about that the other day with the Canadian sister (now gone home, sadly) and we were remarking on how he was introducing veg like Mangetout peas, runner beans and courgettes to a local shop in the early '60s, when such things were truly exotic in Co Fermanagh. He would get up at 6 to pick the day's crop and take the excess in to Enniskillen on his way to work.
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tagwex
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
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Location: Co. Wexford

PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 8:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Started picking the 3,000,000 pea plants yesterday. Got almost 10 lbs in the pods. I noticed two of the varieties were gone very yellow and lots of small holes in the leaves but no sign of what was causing it. Adjacent plants are still a lush green. 7 varieties in all.
Am i right in thinking that i wont get a second show of pods at this time of year? Should I just pull up the plant when all pods removed?
Put out the roadside 'veg for sale' sign this morning so we shall see how that goes.

_________________
Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE


Last edited by tagwex on Mon Aug 18, 2014 9:34 am; edited 2 times in total
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Blowin
Rank attained: Vegetable garden tender


Joined: 20 Aug 2008
Posts: 922
Location: Drimoleague, Co Cork

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2014 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know the answers to all your questions but I shouild leave them in situ for a while until they start to wilt. As the last (inedible) pods go brownish, dry them out and that'll be next year's seed - if you decide to grow that variety next year, of course.

The other thing I'd say is that, if you pull a complete root up, you'll see little white nodes all over the root. These, I'm told, are nitrogen and will improve the soil so I'd suggest cutting the plants off at ground level (to leave the nitrogen in the ground) is probably better than pulling the whole lot up?

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tagwex
Rank attained: Chlorophyll for blood


Joined: 23 Feb 2010
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Location: Co. Wexford

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2014 9:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that Blowin. I will cut them off so. Do the seeds go into brown paper bags? Are plastic tubs no good? Can the peas be located in the same drills next year as a bit of work went into putting up the fences (65m) and I was thinking of leaving them up over the winter.
_________________
Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Blowin
Rank attained: Vegetable garden tender


Joined: 20 Aug 2008
Posts: 922
Location: Drimoleague, Co Cork

PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2014 5:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As long as what you put them in is breathable, e.g. paper or cloth, they'll store OK but they'll sweat and become mouldy in plastic. Ours always go in the hot press/airing cupboard until they're needed.

I don't know about using the same ground, except that the books usually say that it encourages diseases to flourish in any crop. Wait for the others to comment.

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Qzy
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I store my peas in Jam Jars with one of those little sachets that keep the air dry - you get them with new shoes etc.
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