Thursday, 23 September 2010

Belated Happy Anniversary to Roar! Earth

This was from the 19th August, a year to the day I started clearing the end of the garden.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Space Turnips

The kohlrabi have been renamed 'space turnips' by friends who came over for Sunday dinner last week. There are four left growing and the remaining few in the fridge will get eaten tonight. I am still hoping to get some broccoli in but it may be a bit late...worth a go I reckon.

It looks like I am going to have a bumper crop of blackberries and thought I would give jam-making a go. I've never done it before and so it only occurred to me yesterday as I picked up some jam sugar in the supermarket that I should have saved a few of the jars that I have been conscientously putting in the recycling...D'oh!

The dwarf beans have done really well and are plentiful, and the chard is still going strong. It's only just showing signs of bolting so I will cut it back later and I think it will survive a while longer.

The sunflowers are all exceedingly tall and robust. I will hazard a guess that they will be flowering by the end of the week.

Sam and I went to pick the cucumber yesterday, and found four fully grown! What a lovely surprise. And a big fat marrow, ripe for stuffing.

The pumpkins are all growing green and round, as are the tigerella tomatoes. I think I may need to find a good recipe for green tomato chutney. If anyone has one they would like to send me it would be much appreciated!

No runner beans as yet but I've had a few more broad beans and peas. Next year I will make sure I do some more concerted companion planting so the broad beans don't get quite so much of an all-out attack by the black fly that have almsot defeated them this year.

It was Lammas yesterday and, as I have written elsewhere, this is the time to celebrate the first harvest, acknowledge the successes of the year, give thanks and look to seeds of the future.

I have achieved more than I hoped with my first go at growing vegetables. I feel very lucky to have had such a positive experience, which has also benefited Sam no end. Even though he is, of course, far more concerned about playing rugby than weeding.

I still have to clear the ground on the other side of the path. This will be my big job of the winter. I have some ideas about what I am going to plant there. I am also going to build a den for Sam. And it will be big enough for Mummy to crawl into as well, if I feel like hiding... I have also got some ideas for how and what I will plant in the veg patch next year...more on that another time.

Friday, 16 July 2010

(Don't) Make Room For The Mushrooms

Mushrooms sprang up in the raised bed with the tomatoes growing in it, next to the last few remaining beetroot. They were also lurking nearby and trying to attach themselves to the largest kohl rabi. I think they were possibly poisonous, or 'magic', mushrooms.

I dug them all up - a couple had a blue-ish tinge to them and I made sure to remove the soil around and directly under them as well. It looked full of whitish mould. I am not sure if I needed to do this but better safe than sorry!

The dwarf beans are growing and the first of the 'tumbling tom' tomatoes have appeared.

I staked the sunflowers and the delphinium and have been weeding, weeding, weeding.

I aim to plant up my pots of spinach and salad leaves on the patio later.

And find a space for some broccoli!

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Jobs this week

1. Plant pots of spinach and mixed salad leaves.
2. Stake the delphinium.
3. Continue clearing the patio of weeds and old pots/debris.
4. Weed the veg patch.
5. Cut down the burgeoning bindweed and brambles on the path to the compost bin in the corner.
6. Repot the thai basil.
7. Deadhead.
8. Harvest the kohl rabi and the first dwarf beans.
9. Continue eating the swiss chard, peas, lettuce and rocket.
10. Work out whether there is space to plant some broccoli.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Swiss Chard, Lollo Rossa and Posies

So much for more regular updates - I have been so busy keeping up with the garden and various other projects that I haven't had time to blog! I will remedy that by keeping future posts short and sweet, like the pea pods that I can't stop munching on!
The marrow is taking over, the cucumber plants are creeping towards the swiss chard. The pumpkin is heading for the path. The tomato plants are all flowering and the self-seeded ones in the cold frame are doing well, alongside the coriander and nigella.

The beans, all blighted by black fly, are now covered in ladybirds and have made something of a recovery. There are dwarf beans almost ready to be eaten. I've eaten all the radishes I planted and most of the beetroot. The mixed salad leaves and spinach bolted whilst we were on holiday so I pulled it all up and have planted a whole raised bed of beetroot instead. Can't get enough of the stuff!
The swiss chard has been plentiful and delicous and is stil going strong. I've been delivering carrier bagsful of chard and lollo rossa lettuce, and the odd posy of flowers, to various friends and family. This has been a very satisfying side effect of growing veg and flowers. The kohl rabi is ready to be harvested. I need to work out how best to cook it. Ideas and advice are welcome! There is quite a crop of poisonous-looking mushrooms growing alongside the kohl rabi and in the raised bed with the tomatoes and last of the beetroot. I will have to try and work out what they are but I will certainly not be eating them!

The sunflowers are starting to flower but I think it will be another week or so before they are really ready. The cornflowers are blooming next to the chard and the marigolds, cosmos, nasturtiums and dahlias are all doing well. There is nigella self-seeding everywhere, one of mum's favourites. The poached egg flowers and alyssum that Sam planted are all flowering and the arch is still full of honeysuckle and velvety violet clematis.

The apples are growing and I spotted the first blackberries yesterday.

The main problem is still keeping the bindweed and brambles at bay, and a cat has started messing near my squash, so I will have to do something to put it off.

I am wondering if I can squeeze some broccoli in but have a feeling the answer may be no...

Wednesday, 16 June 2010


Love Hearts and Lemon Tea

Blousey with Lemon Sherbet

Coral Sisters Climbing Cerulean

Heavenly scent of Turkish Delight

Monday, 7 June 2010

Stick a Fork In - I'm Done!

Where did the time go? It's now seven months since I last posted...

Here is a refresher of what I started doing and what it looked like back on August 19th last year.

I have not had time to blog here. I have been blogging elsewhere at the original LucyFurLeaps site and the new LucyFurLeaps strictly all about poetry site.
No blogging here though...but I have been working in the garden.

I steadily cleared, cut, weeded and dug away over the winter. Of course it helped that everything started to die back and from my last post I continued to work in any spare half hour or break from studying I got. At the weekends one of my nieces would come over sometimes on a saturday and help with a bit of digging and child-minding. Thanks Emily!

By March I had almost cleared one side and was slowly digging out as many of the bramble roots as possible.
After Easter my good friends Kat and Paul, and their wonderful daughter Maya, came to help me and Sam set up our vegetable patch. A hard day's digging, organising, clearing and assembling of a couple of raised beds and the overgrown wilderness is transformed!

It was a relief and a joy to finally have some help. I had achieved a lot by myself but with three people and a full day the aim of setting up a vegetable patch was finally realised. Thanks guys - I couldn't have got it done without you!

A proper write up of the setting up of the veg patch will follow...
There is so much to write about- and now that I have finished my second year at university I have some time. I will now be updating this site regularly.

Anything is possible!

Love, Love, Love xxx