Monday, August 11

Full of beans.

This week it is a wonder that I haven't even dreamed about picking beans. We have grown the climbing beans differently this year. To start with we have grown them through weed control fabric and also we have used a tunnel design for the supporting canes rather than a wigwam/teepee style that we have used for the past few years. Martyn posted about this here.
13 July 2014
Although this does take up more space we have found it is much easier to pick the beans as they are not as hidden amongst the foliage - we found this especially an issue with beans growing inside the wigwam. We have used this sort of structure before but this year I forgot to add the cross pieces that give additional support. You can tell from the photo above that our site is exposed to westerly winds. Must remember this next year and hope the structures manage to stand up yo whatever this year's weather throws at us.
As well as the Cobra climbing French beans we have also picked some Royalty purple French beans. The low growing varieties are nothing like as prolific and the beans tend to end up dirty, curly or nibbled so next year we will be looking for varieties of purple and yellow climbing French beans to add to the green Cobra. I know the purple beans lose their colour when cooked but they look good when growing. Has anyone any recommendations?
5 August
Alongside the Sungold tomatoes we are also now beginning to harvest a few of the other varieties  - Big Boy, Alicante and Amish Gold.

Potatoes are gradually being lifted and will be stored in boxes acquired from the supermarket - like the one in the photo below.

Despite the plum trees attracting the attentions of plum moths we seem to be managing to harvest some grub free fruits. 

Courgette production has steadied and the plants are now producing a manageable harvest
7 August
Nestling in amongst Saturday's gatherings below are three cauliflowers - always a treat.

We've started to pick a few apples which although small combine well with the blackberries to produce a tasty crumble. Our Loch Ness blackberries were supplemented by some picked from a wild bramble growing in an unkempt corner of one of our plots. Martyn posted about this here
9 August
Our Woodblocx bed is continuing to provide us with fresh salad leaves - why didn't we think of having salad leaves to hand before.

I'm picking plenty of flowers for the house, We are just about managing to keep on top of picking sweet peas and have hardy annials, dahlias and gladioli to add to them.

Once again I am linking to Harvest Monday over at Daphne's Dandelions.


38 comments:

  1. I'm growing my beans up wigwams but have slightly changed how I'm growing them this year. Usually, I start my beans off in pots, one bean to one pot, then plant one each side of each cane so there's two plants growing up each cane. This year, I followed Monty Don's example and sowed three beans to each pot then planted the whole pot at the base of each cane, so there's three plants growing up each cane. As you know, the slugs got to my green climbing French beans but the purple French beans, Purple Desire, and my runner beans are doing really well so I'll be using this method again next year. You've got a great harvest there, glad you've managed to get some plums without grubs and thanks for mentioning how you'll be storing your potatoes. I've got some maincrops this year so I'll make sure I acquire some of those boxes, our local greengrocer usually has some he lets me have.

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    1. We plant two seeds to a pot and plant the pot as it is on the outside on the cane, Jo. The boxes to get are the ones with the protruding corners that stack. Once filled with potatoes the potatoes are covered with newspaper to keep the light out and the boxes stacked in the garage which is dark anyway. Martyn labels the end of the box so we know which varoety is which.

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  2. I have used the lines of crossed canes method for years now. Yesterday evening I had to go out and rig up some extra support because I feared the beans would be blown over in the gales. I used some old washing-line cord to tie one end of the line of beans to our house and the other to a tree!

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  3. What a lovely variety in your harvests! Everything is so colorful. And cauliflower is always a treat for me. They don't usually do very well for me here.

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    1. Hi Dave - we had a spell when cauliflowers didn't do well and then we found a club root resistant variety.

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  4. Your harvests are so varied & beautiful! Those flowers are gorgeous. And truly jealous of the apples - they are my favourite fruit. I was going to plant some trees this year but there were so many other projects that they got pushed to next year.

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    1. Hi Margaret, Maybe apples this year then?

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  5. Beautiful harvest. I grow the pole beans on a trellis built from galvanized electrical conduit. It is very sturdy and cheap, for me probably cheaper than buying canes. I did have a trellis blow over once but that was due to a hurricane. A nice purple pole bean is Trionfo Violetto, an Italian heirloom.

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    1. Hi David - I'll look up that variety - thanks

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  6. Such bountiful harvests...I remember them being like this....not this year though but I am determined to be more on top of things next year and get things in in time.

    I grow my beans on stright fences and even then have a hard enough job trying to pick them out. I have never used wigwams but did use the construction you have above for quite a few years before I put in a sturdy permanent fence.

    Hope they survive the winds...we already have some down on our allotments.

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    1. I hope they survive too, Tanya.

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  7. Oh my.. now I'm jealous, just look at that bounty!

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    1. Hi Barbara - we're like squirrels stocking up for winter:)

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  8. Wow, that's an amazing harvest, well done you, all of that hard work has paid off handsomely. My beans are leaning over at the moment, leaving quite a small walkway down the garden. In future I need to start them off leaning the other way I think.

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    1. Tall beans do have a tendency to be windswept most years don't they. CJ

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  9. As usual your harvest is most impressive. Here the beans are late and not numerous but we also have started eating tomatoes. The courgettes and cucumbers are very prolific.

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    1. Hope that you are soon full of beans too, Alain.

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  10. Those are some really great harvests. It is the plums and the berries I wish I had. My plum tree is not doing well. I put in another one this year and I hope it is better. And I can count the berries I pick on my fingers I get so few. I don't think I've ever gotten more than 10 in a picking.

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    1. Does the wildlife get to the berries first, Daphne?

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    2. Only occasionally. It is very near to the house and there are a lot of cats around. I think it is dangerous for the wildlife to try to eat it. But I do sometimes find half eaten raspberries that the birds ate.

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  11. This harvest in the photo is just fantastic! So varied, so many delicious food! I'd like to have a harvest like that!

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  12. That's a LOT of beans, what a beautiful sight! All your harvests are beautiful, so much variety and so bountiful.

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    1. And more beans to come Michelle .

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  13. Beautiful and diverse harvests this week! I grow Purple Trionfo Pole Beans with great success. They have pretty lavender flowers that produce slim, purple pods with a slightly nutty bean flavor. The vigorous vines climb up my trellis supports and flow back down. They are very prolific in my garden even when their foliage is eaten by deer. ~ Rachel @ Grow a Good Life

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    1. I'll certainly look that one up, Rachel

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  14. Your harvest is a credit to the hard work both of you put in Sue. Everything looks scrumptious!

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    1. As you know, Angie - food you grow yourself is scrumptious

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  15. What an absolutely fantastic harvest, and such an interesting selection too.....you'll be OK if Armageddon strikes.....and I'll be first in the queue!xxx

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    1. And you will be very welcome, Snowbird - the problem is that it would soon run out.

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  16. A very impressive bounty, Sue! You are doing a fantastic job of promoting 'grow your own' and allotments - great job :-)

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    1. Thank you Shirley - I never thought of me as promoting allotments and growing your own,

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  17. That pretty vegetable flowers! You have very productive vegetable farm!

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    1. It's a pity that the bounty is short lived Malar

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  18. Amazing harvests! I grow blauhilde purple climbing French beans, have had some good results in the past and very pretty flowers

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    1. Thanks Lou another to look out for,

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