Monday, July 27, 2009

Off computers a bit......

Off computers a bit at the moment, sometimes after working at a screen all day I end up in a mood for days where I just can't be arsed to peer at a screen again in the evening, so apologies for the lack of updates.
Raspberries are now all picked out and the nets packed away, just as well because some juvenile Blackbirds had discovered the weak points last week and were always in the "cage" each time I went up the plot, funny not avian interest until the crop was over the peak, even on the unnetted rows.
Calabrese, the secondary shoots did appear, but on cooking they were VERY woody at the cut end, so just as well I'd pulled the row and picked the shoots as I put the rest of the plant into the compost bin. The second planting is just coming on, but is smaller than the first.
Potatoes continue to be very enjoyable, steamed and buttered, mmmm. Dug some last week and my beloved cooked the lot instead of an appropriate amount, so I ended up carefully slicing a dozen decent sized steamed cold spuds and sauteing them, mmmmmm mmmmmmm.
Leeks, the seedlings are established, but with some losses that either didn't like the transplant, or got pulled by the birds.
In the herb patch the Wintersweet has been pruned back hard as it was flopping out four feet in all directions and swamping other stuff. The Elecampane has finally started to put out its rich honey scent as sufficient flowers open.
Talking of flowers the bedding Dahlias are now a vibrant slash of red and yellow across plot 18 and the Asters are starting to flower along the main path end, as are the Gladioli in several locations.
Garlic was harvested this weekend as the tops had died off, a disappointing crop, nothing even reached golf ball size, despite being in well tended barrels with no competition, good loam to feed on and careful watering as needed. The surviving Elephant Garlic, all three of them, are still growing strongly.
French Beans are picking strongly, nice and easy as well with the purple pods, got seven pounds in the freezer from one picking.
Greenhouse Tomatoes are now picking, got fourteen Sunday evening when watering.
Got another load of Horse manure from my friend Robert Saturday 18th July and I emptied it along where the first row of Potatoes had been. Bloody foxes went through it in detail and played in my onions, pulling half a dozen up.
Spent most of Saturday 25th July weeding the top quarter of plot 18 among my leeks, piles of weeds. also sowed some follow on salad stuff.
Feeling a bit more computer friendly, so hopefully a better update next week.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Don't mention Raspberries.

No really please don't, I've got a real glut at the moment, picked 16lb on Sunday 5th July and another 20lb on Saturday 11th July.

Saturday 4th July was the second "make do and mend" day at the Rugby Club, I helped install a drain to stop the patio flooding the clubhouse via the fire door during heavy rain, then watched the Lions make up for their first two dismal performances against South Africa.
Sunday 5th July I weeded all of Plot 17, dug potatoes for tea and picked; mangetout sugarsnap peas, cuccumbers, lettuces, purple french beans and raspberries.
I got Chris & Alison to help themselves to all the ones down by the coldframe, then got Terry & Sue to pick the uncovered row up on the fruit terrace, that left me just the four netted rows and they yielded 16lb.
Mary was asking about some un-picked fruit on a couple of plots, so I offered her my redcurrents and some gooseberries, she left with a mixing bowl of each and the promise to me of a couple of jars of jelly and jam.
The redcurrents looked like polished jewels lurking in the bushes.
This is how the onions and shallots looked after I had finished.

Saturday 11th July I spent two hours picking fruit.

Then I uncovered some of the brassicas to weed them, nice easy job as the soil hasn't set hard, although there were some impressive cracks.
Then I noticed that under the next set of protection my calabrese was somewhat more advanced than I had thought.
Take a look at these two.
I harvested about fifteen of these, gave one to John who couldn't quite believe his eyes, three to Bob & Tracey, two for Sunday dinner and ten for the freezer. Left some smaller ones to bulk up a bit and it looks like there might be sideshoots.
Harvested half a carrier bag of purple french beans, some for Sunday dinner the rest went in the freezer.
Dug two potato plants, which gave some small spuds for my tea, everyone else had already eaten, with a good amount for Sunday dinner.
Managed to lure Mary back to pick more redcurrents and gooseberries, another mixing bowl of each, amazing how laden the two bushes of each are this year.