Monday, June 27, 2011


Scorching hot!

yesterday was 37 deg C here! Phew! Luckily, Biggest one (bigger than me now!) had to go to a rugby tournament and needed dropping off at 6.45 am... lucky me. Anyway I took advantage to go spend a few hours on the plot. And readers, I worked like a navvy it must be said. By the time I got baxck mid morning it was getting really hot out there, so timing was just right.
Job 1 - pull out all the bloody groundsel that was edging the onion bed. Left it in situ as mulch along the edge of the bed
Job 2 - harvest the garlic. 32 bulbs, a pretty good result. Not too big but it's lovely pink garlic, excellent flavour. Also pulled up the early echalotes - there is at least a kilo of those! Beautiful pink and red long ones. The onion harvest should be a really good one. The bulbs are very big, the necks are starting now to droop and yellow and fall over so I am guessing that harvest can take place in about a fortnight or so. No bolting! I am soooo pleased.
Job 3 - Stick in a bit of manure and replace the garlic with some leftover tomato plants that were hanging around. Might as well let them grow, even if it's getting a bit late, I will get late fruit off them at worst.
Job 4 - tie up the tomatoes again (some are getting very unruly) and start to trim their foliage. Loads of flowers and a few small fruit developing - the beefsteak that I bought at a boot sale is getting quite a few fruit and I think it will be a good one. I noticed that the Evergreen green toms have odd flowers - really big ones with a lot of petals!!! Strange. But the plants are really vigourous and seem to love this hot weather. Many are now well over a metre tall. The aubergines are still quite small. but I persevere with them. The peppers are in flower, superb. There are about 6 pepper plants surviving in all, but that is enough.
Job 5 - Rip out the peas that have finished now. Didn't manage to get any seed to save from them, which is a pity. The Alderman were good, I will grow them again but I think in a wetter spring they will be much better. Dug in some manure and buried a whole box full of scraps under the bed and sowed French beans: Safari,YinYang, Yellow wax dwarf and Konigsneckern and Cobra talls. These should give me beans later in the season, when the first lots have given up.
Job 6 - Pick the gooseberries. DAMN IT! They hurt like f**k! Big spines, in fingers and ripping down arms. Got at least 2kg of fruit but it bloody hurt!

I pottered - weeding, watering, training the pumpkin vines which are completely rampant! The Turks' Turban has gone mad, and the Atlantic Giant has small fruit on it. Tidied the strawberries, pulled out the broad beans that are finished, tied up the cucumber vines that are starting to flower (as are the melons which are really vigourous!). Courgettes struglled for a while as the temperatures fluctuated a lot but they are growing, just taking their time this year (I was quite late with them, usually plants are in by may and this year I direct sowed in June :-S). The carrots and parsnips I sowed recently are starting to germinate. The lavender is in flower and all is well with the world.

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