Saturday, 19 July 2008

There may be trouble ahead ...

Apparently we have had a few Smiths Periods recently (where conditions are ideal for a potential blight outbreak) and I'm slightly worried about my Vales Emerald Potatoes. So far only one plant is affected and I'm hoping it is just sun scorch, or part of the natural growing cycle - especially as they are next to my main crop, which currently look extremely healthy and green. I was away on holiday this time, last year and when I got back I discovered that blight had swept through the potatoes. The rocket were worst affected, but there was nothing at all left of any of the haulms, so I still don't actually know what it looks like.

ValesEmeraldPotato copy

I dug up one plant - the potatoes are still quite small, but they look good. They will be my tea tonight. I've harvested tonnes of peas too. I'm either going to make green pea tartlets, potato & pea fritatta or pea timbales.

On a happier note, my garlic has been drying nicely and I've bundled up the Germidor. I tried to plait it, but it wasn't terribly successful, so I've got three 'plait bundles'. The Cristo have been cleaned up, but I ran out of time, so next time I go I'll have to do something with them.

Germidor copy

The Fenugreek has already germinated:

Fenugreek copy

I'm going to put peas into the other garlic bed I think.

I've picked loads of raspberries again today. I need to find a new recipe for them. The strawberry bed is looking a little worse for wear. The recent rain and sunshine have created quite a humid condition and lots of the fruits are rotting. Its partly my fault as I couldn't face harvesting them last week - I'm running out of recipes and things to do with them and am ending up throwing out more than I'm eating. I also harvested some rhubarb, so I might make rhubarb pudding with strawberry sauce for tea.

I've got lots of red poppies and discovered this beautiful lilac one in the onion bed. I must try and save its seed:

Purplepoppy copy

The carrots are flowing like mad, I'm not sure how I'm going to collect the seed, but some of them look as if they may be ready. I'd thought about a paper bag, but its been horrendously wet recently, so I need a plan b:

carrotflower copy

I harvested another cauliflower, but I think the rest may just end up on the compost heap as they've gone over a bit. We are getting better at eating stuff as it comes off the lottie, but its quite hard keeping up with everything. For lunch I took some roasted artichokes and a cheese dip to the lottie - they are so scrumptous. I've brought another four heads home. So far I haven't let any go to flower yet.

This little fella has been living in the half water butt outside the brick greenhouse and I keep forgetting that he lives there and accidentally scoop him up in the watering can:

Boatman2 copy