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Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2016 9:39 am
by ina
Green Aura wrote:
If the weather/light allows can't you grow small and often, rather than bulk for storing?


I would think that is probably the best way of achieving supply all year round... Considering that your winter temperatures don't seem far off our summer, what are the constraints for growing in winter? Water/light/temperatures? You might have to use different varieties, maybe... Our growing periods are very short, and even then quite often things don't work out the way we want due to lack of rain at the right time or whatever strange reason. My broad beans and runner beans this year were a total disaster - other years I have plenty. The one thing that seems to keep going all year round is kale - and it's so healthy! Not that it is my favourite veg... Can't have it all. :mrgreen:

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2016 11:22 pm
by Weedo
Thanks all for the info - perhaps I am just being too ambitious given my climate and should concentrate of what I can effectively grow and store and resign myself to buying what I can't.

In terms of building a "passive coolroom" I was thinking of trying something like an overgrown Coolgardie safe. Perversely, despite our hot and dry climate, water supply is not a problem.

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Fri Aug 26, 2016 9:19 am
by Odsox
I have to say that I can't see what the problem is.
Looking again at your climate and location you ought to be able to grow food crops continuously over winter.
At 35° south, daylight levels are good and average temperatures between May and September are similar to southern France and rainfall looks pretty good too.
It ought to be possible to have winter crops of Brussels sprouts, winter cabbages, broccoli, cauliflowers, carrots, peas, broad beans, potatoes & lettuce, just to name the ones I can think of.

But .... you live there and I don't, so there must be a reason why you don't grow during your winter.

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:41 pm
by johnb1
I use a rather over rated Excalibur dehydrator for tomatoes and occasionally mushrooms. But am quite interested in solar options ie not paying the electric companies. Are they really practical in the UK?

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 8:32 am
by Green Aura
I think so, maybe depending on what it is. My neighbour has a homemade rack made of stacking mesh shelves. She mainly uses it for quick-drying herbs but I've seen things like courgette slices on it. She keeps it in her conservatory which gets full sun (on days we get any) from February to November-ish.

We're on the north coast of Scotland.

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:17 pm
by diggernotdreamer
I have to say, I love my Excalibur 9 drawer dehydrator. I dry herbs and flowers for teas, pounds and pounds of tomatoes to store in oil, sometimes onions which are very handy, I did dehydrate some blackcurrants a few years ago and didn't like them particularly, but suddenly I have found I have a use for them in my little tissane teapot with some dried elderflowers and a slice of lemon, makes a really lovely tea, so I will make some again. Oh, the powdered tomato was a huge success, will defo do that again. I did try dehydrating in my polytunnel, but the humidity at night just rehydrated everything again, I think a double glazed conservatory would be a better bet in terms of humidity than outside, but I just like the convenience of getting loads of stuff dried during the course of one day and then doing another lot the next day

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:40 am
by johnb1
Green Aura wrote:I think so, maybe depending on what it is. My neighbour has a homemade rack made of stacking mesh shelves. She mainly uses it for quick-drying herbs but I've seen things like courgette slices on it. She keeps it in her conservatory which gets full sun (on days we get any) from February to November-ish.

We're on the north coast of Scotland.

Can you tell me more.? I live in Lincolnshire. I have a conservatory but I use it for plants which means it is very humid, at least at night.
Anyone got any links to diy dehydrators?
Blackberry didn't work for me either as I was using them in muesli.

Re: Storing - drying vegetables

Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:59 pm
by Green Aura
There are loads of plans for DIY dehydrators John, just Google it.

As for humidity in your conservatory, unless you're growing tropical plants I'd suggest cracking a window open or you'll get mildew.