in War by E. J. KING, M.A., F.R.H.S.
HERE is no need to take up and store the young carrots still growing; these are, mostly from August sowings. They 'often keep on and on during the mild spells of winter without spoiling in the least. Of course, if you do find that some of the roots are damaged you had better bring in the others. Young beets can also be left out to make the most of the odd warm days.
Chicory (especially the large-leaved Brussels Witloef) can be lifted during early November. It is not necessary to do so, as the plant is actually a hardy biennial. But if roots are taken up now and stored in sand or earth to prevent shrivelling, they can be started into new growth by placing in warmth and moisture at intervals during the winter to provide a most delicious and nourishing blanched vegetable which can be cooked like seakale or used raw and crisp in salads. If plants are left in the ground in a mild corner
or frame they will send up dandelion-like II.'."". useful in salads during a mild season. Salsify and scorzonera can now be taken sq. ....iesu, you may find that some of the better developed plants arc endeavouring to send up a flower head. In any case, the roots should now be lifted and stored in a frost-proof place as directed above. Thereafter they can be cooked like a very superior parsnip (which they much excel in flavour) in water containing a little vinegar.
WHAT SHALL WE DO W1T11 THE TOPS?
Especially in war-time people wonder if they are making the best use of the waste parts of plants Many eat them themselves with a self-righteous air, and attempt to persuade others to do likewise as a sort of self-justification, Well, apart from rhubarb tops and potato-tops, none of them will do you much harm, though sonic may not taste very good. And as a good many of us arc keeping live-stock of some sort and need to eke out our slender mash allowances with garden wastes, it is as well to know which tops are most suitable.
In the first place let me say that all tomato and potato plants should be burned, as they often spread disease and in any case don't do the soil any good if put into the compost heap for digging in. But Jerusalem artichoke plants are good for feeding to stock, and are something of an antidote to " scour." They should only be fed before going yellow. Parsnip tops do no harm, but arc not popular. Beet and carrot tops are good. Onion tops arc quite good food but they taint eggs and milk and so should be avoided except for gingering up young growing stock; the latter remarks apply to leeks.
Celery and celeriac tops are excellent and
much relished. Chicory, salsify and scorzonera tops are good food. White and swede turnip tops are not always eaten with eager
ness, but contain good food. The outside leaves of the cabbage tribe (including those green ones which we are now stripping from the base of Brussels sprouts to plump up the " buttons ") ate very nutritious; broccoli leaves are the least laxative in, character. Most of the Brassica family leaves contain vitamins Most garden weeds (except bindweed, nightshades and buttercups) are very good for stock, especially when tender. Ordinary Mower plant stems and leaves should never be fed; many are poisonous.
PLANTING IN AND PLANTING OUT Endives and lettuces are still being planted in frames and houses for winter succession, and young cauliflower seedlings started outside for an early planting in spring should now be taken under cover if this has not already been done. They make little growth through the winter.
Mint in boxes and rhubarb stools in fairly deep vessels can be gradually and successionally brought into warmth to give a good early winter yield. For yielding a little later, rhubarb roots -can be left to lie on top of the soil to get frost-bitten. This seems to do them good before forcing. As salads begin to fail, you can cut off the tops of a big swede or two and bring the roots into warmth. The secondary growths, blanched, are appetising and nutritious and can be eaten raw.