Sunday, 22 June 2008

Should be 12th June

I wrote the following on 12th June, but for some reason the post wasn't successful. Please read on.

Well it’s quite a while since I my last entry, but that’s not because there’s been nothing going on, rather that I seem to have been rushed off my feet recently. The planting and sowing has slowed down now, most of the plants are organised, and they now ‘just’ need caring for. We had a bit of a dry patch, where I did need to resort to the hosepipe, but my device for emptying bath water arrived from Lakeland last week, so now I’ll be able to recycle that if necessary. Overnight it was tipping down, so the water butts filled up nicely. I was out in the garden at 6am emptying the water into the spare butts, so if it carries on raining, it’ll fill up again. It takes about an hour to water the garden and all the pots using the watering can, and about the same with the hosepipe by the time I set it all up.
Sadly the two small yacon succumbed to slug attack before the nematodes had a chance to make a difference. I still have the 3 strongest, so I am hoping they will produce the tubers for ongoing planting next year. Now at £5 per plant they weren’t cheap. The celeriac is growing well, and hopefully those members of the gardening club who are giving some a go will be successful and get t enjoy eating it. I’ve a few parsnips from the sowing earlier in the year, but not many. Still there should be enough for Daniel to have some for Christmas dinner.
The courgettes, Cavilli, have flowered this week, only female flowers. I don’t know if this is a feature of the variety as they don’t need pollinating, or if it’s just because it’s early in the season. It will be interesting to see how they go. By next week I might be using home grown courgettes! The patty pans are later, nowhere near flowering yet.
The blackberry is flowering well, and there are two new shoots coming up for next year. If all this year’s flowers set we should get a good crop, twice as many next year? There is one plum on the tree, all the others dropped again. This is the same as last year, I wonder if this one will mature or fall off? We also have some blackcurrants, strawberries, raspberries, grapes, cherries and of course, the blueberries. There won’t be an enormous quantity of each, but with the prices in the shops, these are definitely worth growing.
I had a root around in the potato pots last weekend and found a couple of spuds, about 4cm diameter. I’m leaving them for another couple of weeks to let the crop bulk up. The Vales Emerald pots are flowering, but the 3 Lady Crystl, although planted earlier, are not. This might be a peculiarity of the variety, but I’ll see which ones give the highest yield/taste nicest.
In the greenhouse things are going great guns, small peppers and tomatoes are showing on most of the plants now, but although the chillies are in bloom, there is no fruit yet. The cucumbers are behaving themselves so far, keeping themselves upright by twining their tendrils around their own canes. Mind you, take your eye off them for a moment, and they will try to spread into someone else’s space! The cucumber Noel gave me, despite being a bit lanky at the time, has now grown into a lovely strong plant, in flower and with small cucumbers coming on. Mine are a bit later, but they were only just breaking through when I got the other one, so it isn’t surprising. This should make sure we have cucumber throughout the summer, which will be great as Vicky can munch through a whole one quite happily.
Better close now as work beckons imperatively!

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