End of summer

Finally some rain after the longest dry spell we have every had. It is amazing how quickly things turn green again.
It has been a frantic few weeks as I harvest and cook (and eat!) and preserve from the garden. Sweetcorn, potaotes and beans have been harvested, and strawberries are producing their second flush – such delicious fruit!

The grape on the little pergola was very productive this year.
Way too many to eat!  A friend lent me her steaming juicer – I was very sceptical, but it was absolutely fantastic; you fill the top layer with fruit (washed, but no other preparation) then water in the bottom layer and as it steams it draws the juice out of the grapes, which you then siphon off from the middle layer
The best part is that the juice is sterilised because it is so hot, so the juice lasts for a long time. Tastes just like the Liquifruit or Ceres pure juices we get in SA.
I love dried beans – here cocos, borlotti and black-eyed.  First time that I have planted the black-eyed beans.The last batch of green beans (planted in July) are reaching their peak. Perfect timing before the expected frosts end of the month. Pak Choi (netted at the back to protect them from flea beetles) is now ready for harvest too.  In the foreground the last lettuce and parsley seedings.

Dill and coriander cope with frost, so too do lettuce. Cauliflower and Chinese cabbage grow very slowly in winter, so I am hoping they will have formed hearts before the end of October. Last seeding of coriander and dill this week (6th October)

Brussels are already forming sprouts – I hope they last until Christmas!
Broccoli has been the star this year – we have had almost constant supply – first the big heads, then the smaller side heads – which are ideal for the two of us.

Butternut is nearly ready to pick. Interesting how different the shapes are on a single plantThe slope next to the steps leading to the compost bins was rather ugly – but very stony and dry. I decided to plant rosemary there and it has thrived. In another year it should have covered this area completely.  





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