Monday, 29 August 2016

Weather: sunny, light breeze, a high of 24C...a very nice day

The buckwheat green manure is flowering, I think...

Fairly low key blooms, and sadly didn't the chance to show us its full glory, because...

chopped and dug in as best I could on such a sunny day.  Too hot to do that kind of strenuous work really.

More beans picked, more sweet peas picked, more courgettes picked and, just for a change a little baby cucumber.

Friday, 26 August 2016

Another bucket of french beans today and another two courgettes.  This is getting repetitive.

The buckwheat green manure is growing nicely (doesn't look a bit like wheat).  I'm not sure how big to let it grow before it is supposed to be turned in, but it was too hot today to do anything as strenuous as digging, so it will stay for a while. Dig it in before it flowers is the answer I suppose.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

The french beans are really going for it now

The runner beans are runners-up for a change.

I'm thinking I will pick french beans in preference to the runners a) because I like them better and b) the Czar variety of runner bean makes a good dried bean when left to grow bigger (so the packet said)

The asparagus ferns are falling about all over, but there have been quite a few spears this years which promises well for next year when it will be their third summer and I will be able to cut some. Yey!

Today's harvest, including some over large courgettes which escaped the eagle eye somehow.

These are some "armpits" from the Marmande tomatoes

I will try to keep them going through the winter on the kitchen windowsill and see if they will produce fruit a bit earlier next year.

Monday, 22 August 2016

We are pickling...

An overabundance of beetroot results in beetroot and orange chutney

I decided to take down some of the early tomato plants in the home greenhouse.  They were looking very sorry for themselves and only had a few fruits left.

The result.. mixed green and red tomato chutney.

It is a Nigel Slater recipe I have used before and well worth doing again.

While the early tomatoes are fading, the marmande are looking plumptious..

But they only have fruits on the lowest two trusses,

Perhaps, being beefier plants they need more root space than a 10 inch pot allows.

  • I could try them in recycling boxes next year, but that uses so much compost the cost per tomato becomes ridiculous.  
  • Or another option could be to have more pots and nip each plant out at two trusses. That, come to think of it, could be the best option, because being  plants that  develop later, by the time the top 3rd and 4th trusses have filled and ripened the summer is just about over. The only down side of that is that they would have to be in the greenhouse as they didn't do at all well in the blowaway outside and I don't have a lot of horizontal space inside.
The bush tomato Early Latah is still producing its strange composite fruits and the flavour is very good.  But the plants are very sprawly and untidy and bring on an attack of OCD if I think about it too hard. The Nimbus are definitely a no for next year, the fruits look very pretty and they are quite thin skinned, but they are tasteless and prone to splitting and blossom end rot. So the side shoots I have been nurturing are binned forthwith.
I might take some marmande side shoots and see if they start fruiting earlier in the season.

And a last look at the marrows...

Definite candidates for the allotment show.

Monday, 15 August 2016


Beetroot-Cylindra , tomato-early Latah, runner bean-Czar, french bean-Cherokee trail of tears


A bit late (packet says plant April) but hopefully they will survive.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Weather: cool wind, with a mix of sun, cloud, and sudden deluges.  Overnight 10C, 12C at 10 am

Now is the season for giant courgettes to be left on the free shelf at the allotment gate.  Its clever how they manage to hide in plain sight until they are a foot long.

Dug up the potatoes, not many but each one is absolutely humungous.

No beans to pick, yet.  They are coming slower than usual because of the dryness I suppose.

But I did pick a tomato (early latah) from the plants at the plot, and very strange it is too

It is like a whole truss of cherry tomatoes all rolled into one.

Saturday, 6 August 2016

Lovely sunny day at last.

Picked the last of the broad beans, the first of the french beans and the second picking of runner beans, bean salad tonight I think!

Weeded the strawberry beds and cut the tops off. Quite a poor year for these, too dry.

The three marrows are getting big (forgot camera, pics tomorrow) might win a prize at the allotment show in September.

Picked two chrysanths.  The first time I have actually cut anything from the cutting garden.