These will be transplanted in a few weeks once each leek is about the thickness of a pencil.
Although I have harvested all the leeks that I am going to eat, I have of course left some to flower so that I can collect the seeds for future years.
There are flower buds already forming on these.
After flowering the seed heads develop. The next photo was taken in September.
I pick the seed heads in the autumn and keep them in a cool dry place until I shake out the seeds to plant in early spring.
So the life history of the leeks I ate yesterday,
- Summer 2006 - a leek left to flower and go to seed
- Autumn 2006 - seed head picked and stored over the winter
- Spring 2007 - seeds sowed in seed bed
- Summer 2007 - leek seedlings transplanted to growing position
- Autumn 2007 - Spring 2008 - leeks harvested.
Not exactly fast food!
In a fast changing world, there are aspects of our lives that would be unrecognisable and probably incomprehensible to our grandparents and great-grandparents, yet I know that both my grandfathers and their fathers, grew vegetables and saved seed from year to year in the same way that I do now.
Its nice to feel the connection to the past as I tend my little plot, looking after the soil and the plants and growing food for my family in the same way as generations of people before me.