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Monday 3 November 2014

The Vegetable Plot – November

Crop rotation for good yields

When you are digging over the vegetable plot give some thought to rotating the planting next year. The same crop should not be grown in the same section year after year as this can result in pests and disease getting a hold and reducing the yield. Divide the plot into sections and plan to grow the same vegetable in one section, then in a different section next year.

Most plans work on four sections and so you might grow cabbages, cauliflowers and Brussels sprouts in one section this year and another section next year. These brassica family vegetables may be preceded by or intercropped with lettuces, radishes and other small salads. It does pay to take a bit of time learning more about rotation.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) website and others provide sound advice. Did you know, for example, whilst they appear very different the potato and tomato are members of the same family and if one is planted following the other they are more likely to attract the same insects and diseases? On the other hand, you can grow fruit, basil lettuce, endive, oregano mint, cress, chicory and a host of other vegetables anywhere and without such worries. It’s worth looking up the rules on rotation.

  • Winter prune fruit trees and bushes  
  • Force chicory
  • Plant fruit trees and bushes
  • Lift and store some parsnips and horseradish for a supply when needed
  • Lift a supply of winter leeks and ‘heel in’ in a trench where they won’t freeze in the ground  

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