We produce Cornish traditional field grown pulled bare rooted Brassica vegetable plants. Very few growers use this method these days, generally you find brassicas grown in modules, under glass or in plastic tunnels. Hybrid varieties of plants are mainly used for this method which produces uniform vegetables but they will all harvest at the same time ......
You - the gardener , allotment owner, farm shop ,field gate sales person most probably would like varieties which will crop over an extended period. You need good well established Varieties which will be ready to cut and eat over a period of months. Bare rooted plants are grown and pulled at a larger size when a good root system has been able to develop, they transplant well and soon flourish in your own plot. Established in 1924 we specialise in growing old fashioned traditional varieties in the time honoured way. I am Andrew Arnold, the third generation to continue this tradition.
From a small boy I would help my Grandfather and Dad out in the field. We sow all seed by hand covering approx 4 acres per season, yes I do use a tractor to harrow the seed in, that is it for the mechanical bit. Up to the early 70's all plants were raised in seed beds in a field, now this is rarely done as most are grown undercover . Field grown plants are larger, sturdier and more robust and aclimatised to weather conditions. They will crop over a longer period than the modern
ones because old fashioned heritage varieties are grown.
When the plants are ready, they are physically pulled by hand, counted and banded as we go. These days I have the help of my wife Helen. I have had to develop the nationwide delivery part of our business as in Dad's day visiting cattle markets five days a week, gardeners and village shops in Cornwall were the main source of our income. Now most of those have gone, for many reasons - national supermarkets and the foot and mouth outbreak to name a couple..
We use a reliable carrier and they guarantee a 24 hour delivery service, they collect as late in the day as possible so that we can get the orders pulled fresh the same day, packed up and sent off. You get them the following day. So for many years now the plants have gone throughout England and Scotland, Isle of Wight and the Scottish isles, of course the further regions and off islands can take 48 hours. Bare rooted plants can live for many days before being planted, if the outer leaves turn yellow the heart of the plant remains good and will produce you a cabbage, cauliflower or kale, what ever you choose to try. We also sell plant related products and up to 50 varieties of brassica plants located in our online shop.