For the first time this year I am trying my hand at trench celery. It’s always looked a bit of a faff before, to be honest, but I was seduced by Peppermint Stick by The Organic Gardening Catalogue.
Sowing, pricking out and planting went pretty well, as did creating the trenches and the plants are growing strongly.
Now, then, I get to the bit I’ve not been looking forward to – blanching. Th old gardening books insist you earth them up like spuds but it a) looks like hard work and b) looks as though you’ll get a celery plant full of soil. So I’ve decided to go for what I understand is the modern way – wrapping something round them to cut out the light.
I’ve not been able to find a definitive answer to exactly what that something should be. I’m wary of plastic in case it makes the stems sweat, so I’m thinking newspaper.
Even there I’m hedging my bets – I’m trying basic newsprint (the Telegraph Gardening Section in case you’re wondering…) and a paper with a slight gloss on it (The London Review of Books).
I suspect it’s down to which is most absorbent (I couldn’t possibly comment on which is most absorbing). Will the plain newsprint get a bit soggy when it’s watered? Should I have put earth round the paper?
Who can tell…