You prepare their soil, plant them, nurture them, water them, protect them, feed them, and yes... love them! But even after all that you still have to remember that they can be a little dangerous at times.
This week some of us have succumbed to the dreaded parsnip rash. On a sunny day sometimes the human skin can react to a natural protective reaction from the parsnips.
It must be the parsnips way of saying "back off" during this important growing phase. We thought we had done a good thing with a bit of hand weeding to give them the best chance of survival . But with a violent rash we realise we have to respect their space, especially on a hot, sunny day - the only answer is to stay out of them.
Also to contend with is lettuce and celery rash, as well as courgette and squash leaves that have razor sharp spikes that cut fine scars into your arms to be then covered in another bacterial skin disease. But they have to be hand weeded so covering up and washing any exposed skin with antibacterial soap seems to work with courgettes.
Elsewhere on the farm the hot weather is making the sweetcorn the best it's been in 3 years so we're hoping for a bumper crop.
The cool weather crops are not very happy and some more cauliflower has sizzled under the sun and died off. It seems we will have to invest in some special netting so that does not happen again.
The winter squashes are setting their flowers and instead of 1 fruit per plant we may get 5 or 6! Making it the best crop we have ever had! We will be buying some extra storage boxes in preparation. Theres never a dull moment...