bolting vegetables - what can be done?

 

with spring and summer coming ever closer, it is time to rejoice for many reasons - warmer days, swimming, drinking, heading to the beach and most importantly your airgarden’s fruit and veggies will start growing fast!!!

the one downside to the longer days and warmer temps is that it can cause some of our favourite leafy greens (cos lettuce, rocket, spinach, basil, etc) to want to ‘bolt’. bolting (if you haven’t heard of it) refers to the premature production of a flowering stem (or stems) on a plant before it can be harvested. bolting is the plant's natural attempt to produce seeds so it can reproduce. it occurs when the weather heats up and often leads to the leaves of the plant becoming bitter and inedible.

how to delay bolting

 

there are a few things you can do to prevent vegetables from bolting:

 

  1. keep your plants well hydrated:
  • don't worry, the airgarden is fully automated, so your plants will be well watered.

 

  1. choose varieties of plants that resist bolting:
  • try ‘australian yellow leaf’, ‘buttercrunch’, ’flame’, ‘goldrush’ ,’lollo rossa’, ‘cos’ and ’royal oakleaf’ lettuce varieties. these are all relatively heat tolerant and bolt resistant.

 

  1. pick the outer leaves off keeping them from maturing:
  • this can extend the time the plant produces by as much as 6-8 weeks, giving you more of a chance to grow it longer and delay flavour changes.

 

  1. Give them some shade:
  • a simple piece of shade cloth or a beach umbrella can provide much needed relief from intense sun & temps that can cause many of the above plants to prematurely want to ‘bolt’.