It is September already!

My last post was in July (where have the days gone??) and so a rather long catch-up post

Weather-wise it has been a strange summer. Look at my rain app  which shows the monthly totals for this year against a graph of previous years averages; no rain in July, then torrents in August this year.

So the grass has greened up again!
This time of year I spend as much time in the kitchen as in the garden as I cook and preserve the harvests:
It was wonderful to have Claire here to help me pod borlotti beans. They are always very successful with high yields of both dry and fresh beans. One of my favourites!The butter bean, Pienky Jas, has been a disappointment. It grew like crazy and now each day I am pinching off the growing tips to try to stop it growing!  But I’ve had very few beans off it. Now it is full of flowers again (which the bees love) and forming new beans, but I worry that they will not be fully formed by the time the first frost arrives. Fingers crossed!First year of planting soya beans (edamame) has been a success. What I had not realised is that raw soya is poisonous, so no eating these straight from the garden. Note all the clover in the grass; clover, oxalis and bindweed have been a real problem this year, but I will not use weedkiller, so I guess I have to live with them.
Hazelnuts for the first time from our trees! One of my favourite nuts, but a real pain to crack….

Butternut are ripening so I’ve spent time this week clearing away leaves to expose the fruit to more sunlight, and putting slate tiles underneath them to stop any rot where they contact moist soil

Aubergine are going over, but new plantings (23 August) of spring onions, onions Rouge de Florence and Paris White have germinated well and will hopefully be strong enough to cope with the winter. Swiss chard seeded here this week 12 September.  Rather late!
We’re eating Pak Choi Taisai, (on the right)  one of my favourite Chinese vegetables. Pak Choi Green Fortune, sown 18 August is being eaten by snails – hence the snail bait. Next to the leeks, parsley and leaf celery, sown 23 August.  Another row of pak choi, and mizuna sown yesterday 13 September.
Autumn brassicas doing well – some cabbage moths around, but fewer than previous years.

The curry leaf plant, so carefully nurtured through winter has done so well. I hope it survives this coming winter. In front of it, a Serrano chilli which is apparently more winter hardy than most chillis (it has a hairy stem) so I hope I can keep a supply of fresh chillis after the first frost too.
Second planting of Jeannette potatoes nearly ready to harvest
Peppers and chillies now ripening at a great rate.  New variety of long red romano pepper, Corno de Toro is looking very good.
The salad pepper, Yummy Yellow, is always very productive.
Finally, the best news is the new gate which Ron made for me!  A photo of before and after will explain how thrilled I am!

 

 

 

 

Black medic/ oxalis, clover and bindweed

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