I really struggle with parsnips, and despite promising signs, this year has been no exception.
I popped down to the plot earlier to harvest some ‘snips for Chrimbo dinner, and with my new florist bucket strategy firmly on the mind, I was excited about what I’d find.
Parsnips in Florist Buckets
Growing parsnips in florist buckets was an idea I nicked from the GYO forums. My soil is stony, so the parsnips always grow wide, stubby, and contorted. I’ve never found a way around this, until now.
The theory behind the buckets was that I could control the soil, so hopefully, if I made it stone-free, the parsnips would grow longish and straight. I filled the bottom third of each bucket with topsoil, the middle section with compost, and finished off with multi-purpose compost.
I wasn’t expecting giants – roots can only grow so big in a florist bucket – but I was slightly disappointed with my crop, especially as they seemed to be doing well on the surface. I’d scraped away around the root a few times, and the parsnips were strong and wide, leaving me with high hopes. I thought I’d nailed them this time…
Okay, But Not Great
However, I only got 756g of ‘snips from the five buckets. Although the tops appeared fairly big, the roots have thinned out quite quickly.
I’m not completely disheartened though. They have grown down dead straight, so in my glass full eyes, that’s progress when compared to the open planted mutants I normally get.
Consequently, I’ll be persevering with this method next year in my continued battle with the particular parsnip. I reckon I might go for a bigger container in an attempt to get fatter roots. I’m a man who likes his parsnips chunky.
And I can’t be too downbeat, as there are enough for Christmas dinner – just not anything else!
Merry Christmas one and all, and may your 2012 dreams be as sweet as my little baby parsnips.