Wednesday, August 26

Parcevall Hall Gardens - a taster

 Copyright: Original post from Our Plot at Green Lane Allotments author S Garrett

Monday, August 24

Seeing red

The tomatoes are ripening well now but it is the cherry ones that are providing the harvest and the larger varieties staying resolutely green. 

We continue to enjoy fresh salad leaves and mini cucumbers although this week the leaves have come from lettuces grown on the plot.

Wednesday's harvest

It's the time of year when you have to take care when picking fruit as the wasps are homing in on any signs of ripeness. Plums are a particular favourite. They will also soon move in on the apples. We inherited a row of cordon apples with the plot and can only guess at the varieties. We think that the ones that we are picking at the moment are Discovery. 
These are still not fully ripe but ripe enough for us to enjoy if not the wasps.

We are now picking autumn raspberries which have merged with the summer fruiters to provide a seamless raspberry harvest. Joan J always provides us with a good crop despite she and I being in constant battle with bindweed. The yellow All Gold tries to complete but the berries are soon damaged by wind and rain.

After a poor start the runner and Cobra French beans are providing a good supply of beans. The yellow and purple beans are slower to get going.

Thursday's harvest

The sweet peas are providing us with lots of cut flowers but for some reason most of the stems are short. The problem is that I don't know whether this is down to the variety or this year's growing conditions.

Sunday's harvest
The nectarines fell off the small tree in the greenhouse. Although they were very juicy, the flavour still hadn't developed. On the other hand the greenhouse grapes are as delicious as usual.
Earlier we had been picking Oullins Gage plums but on Sunday we started to harvest Marjorie's Seedling. These proved to be not quite ripe and so the rest will remain on the tree a little longer. Hopefully we will spot when they are ripe before the wasps do!

The thornless Loch Ness blackberry is very prolific with many of the berries being huge.
We had intended to stay longer on the plot on Sunday and harvest more but we were seriously rained off, as you will see if you visit Martyn's blog. We did manage to collect a few things before the heavens opened. 

Copyright: Original post from Our Plot at Green Lane Allotments author S Garrett

Wednesday, August 19

This year's annual flower bed

Monday, August 17

A plum week

Harvest at the beginning of the week
The runner and French beans are at last coming into production and not before time. So far the only variety of French bean to produce anything for picking is Cobra.

Although the soft fruit/berries ripened more or less on schedule, other fruit seems to be in the doldrums. Impatiently we picked some apples but although they are rosy red they are not yet ripe.

The yellow Oullins Gage plums which should have be ripening steadily are now starting to fall off the tree and the wasps are homing in. We can't blame them as they are really delicious.

The nectarines in the greenhouse are also falling off the tree - this week we have had four which to be honest after trying the first two were a disappointment. They were really juicy but hadn't developed the flavour that we were expecting. As these are the first fruits from this tree we were hoping that this isn't the norm. Then we tried a third which this time didn't disappoint not quite the wow factor but better. We think that the tree prematurely aborted the fruit before they were properly ripe.
We also picked a couple of peaches that something had nibbled but again these were not quite ripe and the flavour hadn't developed.

The tomatoes are now ripening but strangely the first to ripen were growing on the plants outdoors. These were the worst plants put straight in the ground on the plot to take their chances rather than throwing them away. They have been given no attention or feed and left to get on with it. We fully expected them to be killed by blight but so far this year we have been blight free.
Outdoor tomatoes
The stronger growing garden greenhouse plants are planted in good quality compost, been cosseted and subjected to a regular feeding and watering regime and are now also producing fruit.
Garden greenhouse tomatoes
Third in the race to produce ripe tomatoes is the plot greenhouse.

All the autumn onions have now been lifted. They have done really well - even the red ones that can be awkward - and have produced good sized bulbs. Some went to seed and so have a hard core but are still useable. The summer onions won't be far behind and are nearly ready to be lifted.
 Harvest at the end of the week
The potatoes dug this week were grown under weed control fabric. Last week's potatoes were grown more conventionally and provided a direct comparison. As Martyn reported in this post there was little difference in terms of yield or damage.

As in previous weeks the salad bar is keeping us supplied with daily lunch-time salad ingredients with mini cucumbers coming thick and fastl

Sunday, August 16

Worth the wait

For a few years now I have been bemoaning the fact that my two orchids refused to reflower.

I have read anything that I could find, watched YouTube videos, sought advice from people successful in getting orchids to flower year after year and followed any advice to the letter.

I decided to pop them on a south facing windowsill over winter with the intention of moving them in summer. As summer never really got going I left them only moving them out of the window on the few days when the sun through the window was hot.

I thought orchids shouldn't be placed on a south facing windowsill and only placed them there in a last resort do or die attempt to get them to flower but look what has happened.
I'd forgotten what the flowers looked like but wasn't disappointed.

They do say good things come to those who wait and it has certainly been a long wait.

Friday, August 14

Running amok

Many of you will know that this year, in April, we planted lots of new strawberry plants in two separate beds.
We didn't expect them to produce much in the way of fruit and it was just as well that we didn't have great expectations as  they didn't.

The plants have, however grown really well and have been productive in another way.  They have been producing runners by the bucket load - literally.
I don't want plants to waste energy producing new plants and so have been cutting the runners off. The plants are determined to outrunner me and produce more as soon as I turn my back.
The plants do look well though and if all goes well and the weather is kind maybe we will have a strawberry bounty next year.