With severe frosts looming on Monday night, I needed to stage an emergency yacon rescue. It was already air-frosted, the leaves turning brown and crispy. The complication being that I’ve been working in the former Olympic Park, which means a 3-hour round trip in the dark. In my pre-plot life I would never have foreseen this.
After a late commuter train, I was out in my work clothes on the freezing allotment, grappling with a 40L tub of yacon and compost, dribble running attractively down the torch held between my teeth and trying to not get my coat filthy. Both the handles on the plastic tub snapped off in my hands, the tub split and my heels were sinking in the mud. It was not a happy time…! With a lot of huffing and puffing (and some muffled swearing) it was safely stashed away from frosts in the shed, and today I got to see what lay beneath.
The result is…mindboggling! No wonder the compost was rising up and spilling over, the pot was rammed full of tubers the size of giant baking potatoes. Originally I had just under 40L of compost in the pot, planted with one small tuber. I think I have carted home about 5-6 kgs of tubers which we are going to have in salads, as crispy juicy snacks and boiled down into almost calorie-free sweet syrup, which is what made me want to grow yacon in the first place. The picture on the right below shows half of it – the others fell off while I was cleaning the compost away. If there are any other ways to use them, please do let me know!
I have been doing other things – just not many while working has been hectic. One of my ‘must-do’ jobs was done last Sunday morning: Him Indoors and I washed the murky insides of the greenhouse. It now sparkles! Hot water from my new camping stove and kettle made it a far less miserable job and it’s all done before our water is turned off for winter. Cue happy dance! The greenhouse was still home to about 6 small chilli plants, plus an enormous pepino draped in hard, unripe fruit, but Monday’s frosts did for them. I might try the pepinos again next year, and keep them inside all season to give me a running chance at eating a ripe one.
PS the eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed that my site looks different. I am hoping that it is much improved, but I reserve the right to mess about with it some more…
Categories: Diary 2016