About Me

Hi I'm JAMES 60 and married with three daughters all left home now, daughters that is not the wife.I enjoy Gardening /Football and working on my Farm.The picture above in the header slot is where i live and work.

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Graeme Watson on Shallots

Had the chance to get to the local NVS meeting last night were the guest speaker was Graeme Watson of Whitby on his method of growing and showing Shallots at National level. His level of care is quite meticulous with the timing of splitting and lifting being absolutely crucial to success, although surprisingly he didn't seem to mind as to when they were started having had top level success with dates varying from end of December to first week of February. One key fact that struck me was the need to grow them hard with very little if any feed so as to keep them healthy and not risk them getting to lush and leading them to being prone to disease. Once they are lifted they are dried out side on chicken wire mesh and he didn't seem to mind if the got a bit of rain on them in the first week or so in fact he thought it did them good helping to give them a nice colour. So in a nut shell their you have it and as a bonus if anyone fancies trying showing at the top level He is packing in growing Shallots for the next few years so as to concentrate on Leeks. All in all a very interesting meeting that gave me something to think about how i will grow Shallots next year, and just for good measure i won a packet of his Long Carrot Seed in the raffle so rounding off a good night.


Simon (Smithyveg) said...

Hiya James,

Pity you couldn't have persuaded Mr Watson to part with a few shallots.....you'd have won a few shows with those.

I used his long carrot seed a couple of season's ago and wished I'd done the same last season but was persuaded to try someone else's at the last moment. I wish I hadn't listened to him as my carrots were rubbish. Next season it's back to Graeme Watson's seed.

They do get very wide around the shoulder I find but when I grew them it was when we had all that rain in July. Consequently I had huge specimens for the first foot or so but then they tapered down very suddenly and looked a bit weird. I think they stopped bulking out as the sand was just too wet so I think you need to try and make sure you can prevent excess rain somehow....ideally by growing them under cover! That way they keep growing downwards and bulking out uniformly


James (Digtoplant) said...

Hi Simon Well i did ask if he had any shallot available but he had just parted with the last of them, I got the impression that they had gone to friends so as he could perhaps get some good stock back some time in the future.It was a good meeting though.I will keep in mind your advice about covering the carrots later in the season seems to make sense. Hope you enjoyed last weekend in Cumbria pity there was a few light showers.