Back to business

I seem to have got the garden back under control at last.  You might not think it if you came round unexpectedly, but to me things are happening roughly as they should be again.  I cleared the space for the winter lettuce this morning and harvested two carrots and a parsnip!  That was all that had grown from countless carrot seeds and one row of parsnips sown.  The slugs seemed to get all the seedlings; I don’t know how they missed these.  There are a few more parsnips and Hamburg parsley growing nicely right at the edge though, I think the slugs must have been confused by the cucumber growing up the arch right beside them.

Anyway, the winter lettuce seedlings are now in, and slug pellets applied.  The other day I planted out the pak choi and a couple of rocket seedlings and so far they have survived.  They are next to the beans, which I’m waiting to take down to plant the radicchio and mizuna for the winter.  The trouble is, the runner beans have sent more flowers out and I’m waiting to see if they bean up or not.  The foliage is looking very healthy.  We had a couple of cool nights (5 degC) this week though, so they may decide not to.

The corn and courgette bed has done reasonably considering the weather.  I have had one full size corn cob and lots of diddy ones.  Today I picked the rest of them, which make up about seven ‘baby corn’ for my stir fry this evening.  The two courgette plants have been producing about one courgette every 2-3 days for the past four weeks, which is just about the right rate for me.  The corn stalks will come down this weekend and I may trim the courgette leaves back too, so that I can sow the winter tares under them before it gets too late for them.

The tomatoes have been a big disappointment this year but the ones under the patio roof didn’t get blight so I suppose I should be grateful.  I harvested about 3kg only of ripe Black Russian tomatoes, the last lot are on the windowsill ripening.  I certainly won’t have tomato sauce in the freezer to see me through to February next year! None of the Moneymaker ripened and there were only 800 gms of those.  I had one small green Amish Paste.  They seemed to flower right at the end of tall plants, and never got going.  They must need to be started off very early and grown in warmth, although I thought they would do well under the patio roof.  It’s been a cold summer though.  The result of all this is that I put 1.4kg of green tomatoes into 7 pots of Green Tomato Chutney last night. That will keep me going for years! Yum!

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