Monday, 19 May 2014

Heatwave !

The beans were going great guns in the greenhouse and with a turn in the weather resulting in a mini-heatwave I decided to plant them out this weekend

Here is the new bean bed - it looks rather good !  This is where the raspberries were last year - the raspberries just put on green growth and it was decided the soil was too rich for them, so I have my fingers crossed that the beans like it

This is Borlotto

Cobra climbing bean

Vick's runners

and these are supposedly 'dwarf' beans .. but they are bigger than the others !  well we'll see, so long as they grow beans I don't mind how tall they grow.

This is my sacrificial bean which has been growing for a couple of years ... the slugs & snails have stripped it - they love the new shoots.  It flowered last month, but there is no chance of any beans ... I'm leaving it in situ a bit longer as a sacrifice

The garlic & onions are doing pretty well, but I found two onions going to seed already, so clearly the hot dry spell is having an impact

The courgettes have taken a bit of a battering ... the day they were planted we had torrential and hurricane winds (well not quite).  Then the slugs & snails discovered them and ate almost all of their leaves which was a bit of a worry.  Now they are turning themselves around to face the sun which is very interesting to watch.  The plants have lots of tiny courgettes forming, so I don't think it will be long until they flower

These are two Cha Cha squash (back) and a Sweet Dumpling (front).  Not entirely convinced by the string & cane for them to grow up and may change it before they get any bigger

This is a Golden Hubbard.  I have two - they have been growing very vigorously. 

I still need to plant up the Queensland Blue & Crown Prince ... not sure where they will go yet ... got two and a bit beds left !

This is the comfrey that I cut down last week and put onto the compost heap

The compost heap is already pretty big

The beetroot seedlings have appeared

These are carrot seedlings, wonder if I'll avoid carrot fly this year.  One of the things I enjoy doing is brushing the foliage with my fingers, but it seems that this is actually what attracts the flies ... so this year I shall be leaving them alone to see if it makes a difference.

The broadies are in full flower.  Sadly the slugs have discovered them, so we'll see how they fare :/

The peas are also in full flower, although the set nearest to the Chives are not doing very well - too much shade I think

I've sown spinach & radishes in the main beds, where the cauliflowers were - that's because the caulis have been eaten !!

There are still 6 caulis ... but I'm not hopeful :/

The greenhouse is getting a bit emptier

but I think it is harbouring all sorts of horrors - looks like there is a leaf miner in the pepper

The lettuces are starting to fill out - I've planted some more in trays - I might go to the trouble of pricking them out

This rocket ... I can't decide whether to plant it outside or not.  The greenhouse is boiling, even with the door and the vents open

This is a sweet potato that started to grow whilst in my vegetable bowl - I was hoping it would produce slips but it's not done much at all since I started to look after it.  Perhaps I should have continued to ignore it

Only two melons left !  They are so small I don't think they are going to do anything, but it's still a bit early, so I'll let them be a little longer

Remember my cucumber that I dropped something on last week, well it seems that it might survive.  You can see the damage on the leaves. 

Still got 6 cucumbers.  I did notice though that two of them have some strange whitish round marks that I need to investigate.

Here are the chives - in full flower.  The look really pretty ... but I'm not sure whether I should have removed the flower heads or whether it ok to leave them on

The transplanted mint is very happy in its new home and I'm pleased to report that it has already adorned several jugs of Pimms !

I have four of these seedlings ... I saved them thinking they were parsley, but now I'm not so sure.  Even more so when I think back to last year and can't actually remember growing parsley !  Will give them a bit longer to be sure :)

It looks like this year will be a bumper year for fruit again - this is the kiwi fruit ... this might be the year !!

The Gooseberries have swelled and are getting big ... I really can't imagine why anyone would want to eat a gooseberry !

 The apple trees were dripping in blossom

and now the fruit has set - the trees are going to be bowed with weight

the strawberries are flowering & have started to set fruits

I learnt over the weekend that rhubarb needs to be watered frequently due to it's umbrella like leaves keeping the roots dry.  On reflection it is a wonder rhubarb survives on its own, let alone manages such a magnificent display.  I've recently discovered oven roasted rhubarb, which retains the colour & shape of the fruit

Vick's peaches look magnificent, the trees are dripping with fruit

These are my Rudbeker, I've manage to keep 11 alive !  I think this is the first year I've grown flowers - they are surprisingly difficult to grow

Make the most of this ... it might not survive for much longer - it is a green aster ... only 4 survived to be potted up, but 2 of those have been attacked by something that has eaten the stem.  I'm too nervous to plant them outside LOL

Stocks !  more flowers.  Now these I'm really nervous about as I suspect the slugs are camping at the greenhouse door waiting for them to go out into the big scary world !

The aqueligia's are in full flower

This is some sort of purple beared iris ?  it is very striking

The Snapdragons are so pretty

The cornflowers didn't flower for long, but they looked beautiful ... summer is on its way folks !

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Busy, busy, busy !

The comfrey had its first cut of the season - amazed how much it had grown.

The tomato greenhouse has gradually been warming up since it was fixed, so today I put the tomato pots in place today and filled them with compost.  The only plant big enough to pot in place at the moment is my Sweet Million.  In the salad greenhouse I am growing on:  Gardeners Delight, Sungold, Alicante & Ailsa Craig

The squashes are doing really well with the exception of my one and only Uchiki Kuri, which has something strange happening on some of it's leaves, I think leaf curl, but can't see any sign of pests.  I've moved it to the tomato greenhouse and will keep my eye on it.  Hope it pulls through.

In the main plot I've sown beetroot and carrots.  I've alternated the carrots with onions and have my fingers crossed that the carrots will be protected from carrot fly :)  I also made the decision to plant out my courgettes ... am already regretting it :/

I'm thinking of planting out my beans next weekend if the wind finally drops and the rain eases.

My second sowing of sweetcorn appears to have failed (only two have germinated) and I had an accident with one of the cucumbers earlier ... I dropped something on it and the stem bent, so I'll have to wait and see if it recovers !!