Monday, October 9

Still managing the occasional plot visit.

We managed another visit to the plot to harvest a few things courtesy of a friend ferrying us there and back home. This time the kind friend was Jan who has a plot opposite to us.
Although we did manage to do a couple of jobs, when plot visits are snatched as and when we can, we mainly concentrate on gathering in the harvest. On Sunday we collected another three sacks of apples and one of pears.

There were also lots of tomatoes both outside and in the plot greenhouse. These will be pulped to use in recipes that call for canned tomatoes.
I hadn't expected to pick any sweet peas. Although lots of the flowers had gone over, due to the fact that we hadn't been able to pick over the plants regularly, I did come away with a good bunch of flowers.
We have had a few firsts of the season. 
After a couple of disappointing years, this year the red cabbages have done well.
A large solid head was revealed once the outside leaves were stripped off. This will make a batch of one of our favourite vegetable recipes - braised red cabbage. This freezes really well and, if anything, improves when reheated,
Another first was a beetroor. This was surprisingly nibble free. Usually our beetroots have evidence of slug activity but this one was near perfect,

You may remember that slugs devastated the emergent growth of our first sowing of carrots. The second sowing didn't escape their attention either but at least some went on to produce a crop of carrots. They are the quintessential wonky vegetables but at least they have usable content.
The shallots were lifted some time ago and were stored in the shed. Last weekend one lot were brought back home to use. Yet another group of occupants of the summer house.
At least there are some things to hand in the garden and garden greenhouse that we can harvest easily. The Snackbite peppers are doing really well but it seems - despite buying a packet of mixed colours - that all the ones we have grown are a yellow variety.
The apples above had fallen from the tree in the garden and were tucked behind the greenhouse. I managed to stand in a tray full of slushy rainwater as I headed through the narrow gap between the greenhouse and boundary fence to retrieve them. Fortunately my garden shoes are made of a rubbery material and so recovered once the insides had dried out!
We've never managed to grow decent melons so we were full of hope for the one that we picked last week. The variety, Emir, is described as low temperature tolerant. This was the only decent sized fruit produced and although it was very juicy it was somewhat lacking in flavour.
Finally the flowers have had a battering and the beds are looking a bit worse for wear but we are still managing to come away from the plot with enough for a vase.

As usual I am linking to harvest Monday hosted on Dave's blog Our Happy Acres



32 comments:

  1. I didn't grow any Red Cabbage this year. Now I wish I had. With limited space available, I have to think carefully about a cabbage's VSR.

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    1. This one is going to provide for a good few meals, Mark. At this size just one or two heads would be plenty.

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  2. Lovely looking red cabbage. I'm amazed at your sweetpeas! Lovely to still be picking flowers for the house and I bet your Summer house smells delicious!. Best wishes

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    1. Sweet peas have surprised me too, Belinda.

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  3. That red cabbage is a beauty. I've not had much luck with the red ones here. Too bad about the melon though.

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    1. The red cabbage weighed in at about 2 kg ( over 4lb), Dave. It was really solid and took some cutting through.

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  4. The red cabbage is simply perfect! The late season firsts are always so nice. And that's the problem with the mixed packets - sometimes you don't end up with an even mix of varieties.

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    1. You’re absolutely correct about mixed seed packets, Margaret. The cabbage was perfect but the carrots less so - much less so

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  5. It must be hard having to rely on someone to give you a lift to the plot when you know all this produce is waiting for you down there, but at least you're managing to bring plenty back on your visits. The melon looks lovely, what a shame the taste didn't live up to expectations.

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    1. It is frustrating, Jo. It’s times like this when I really do need to get myself sorted so I can drive again but it’s knowing where to go for help.

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  6. That red cabbage looks gorgeous, especially with its outer leaves, what a beautiful plant! Good to know about the melon, I really think they need a lot of sunshine to develop flavour and this hasn't been the best summer for that. Despite all, an excellent harvest - I can't believe you've still got tomatoes- blight got my plot tomatoes although I still have some growing on my balcony. And your flowers are just beautiful.

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  7. We’re really pleased with this year’s red cabbage, Caro. Most of that one has been cooked ready for freezing but there was too much to do it all. I think you Re right about flavour developing when the sun shines - maybe next year.

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  8. Great looking red cabbage, I never have any luck with them or the white ones.
    Beetroot is nice & plump. Great harvest

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    1. Is club root a problem for you, Liz? We have to take steps to try and mitigate the effects of it on our plot. This is the first year for a while that we have had success with red cabbage which is why this year we will end up with too many. We planted plenty of plants so we had a better chance of achieving a crop. :-)

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  9. It was interesting to read about the melon. It looks great - shame about the taste. Well done on a spectacular red cabbage! Thanks for reminding me to freeze some to eat on Christmas day.

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    1. That particular specimen is ready to portion up and freeze, Sarah. We will try again next year with melons.

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    2. I know what you mean about packets of mixed seed not being all that mixed... nearly all our mixed peppers were creamy white varieties of different shapes. Our least favourite colour, too! The red cabbage looks lush... if ours are halfway as good I shall be delighted

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    3. The trouble, Kathy is that if you buy separate colours you end up with too many seeds don't you

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  10. The red cabbage looks delicious! You sound like me, always finding something to harvest. I never have luck with sweet peas, but yours are fabulous!

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    1. The sweet peas have been exceptional this year, Bonnie.

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  11. Wow, the photo to start things off really catches the eye! Though lugging it all back home must have been hard work.

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    1. Thanks, not too bad getting it all home. Popped in the boot of our friend’s car to our doorstep. :-)

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  12. What a harvest Sue! I love your grape and melon, it's seems to be sweet isn't it? Now you have a lot of melon seeds. I also liked your sacks full of apples, I envy my apple trees had a few.
    I wish Martin and you be better!

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    1. The melon didn't have much taste at all, Nadezda very land!

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  13. The red cabbage is a lovely one and it looks like you have an impressive green one in that first harvest shot. And your apples seem to be wonderfully prolific. Very nice harvests.

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    1. You’re right, Michelle the green cabbage was even larger than the red one. The green one was the last of those cabbages but the red was a first.

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  14. Red cabbage envy here. Mine were poor germinators (or popular with the slugs) and those that made it to the planting out stage are proving very slow to develop! My Holland Late Winter are a bit slow off the mark too. I'm hoping both will come good yet!(?)

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    1. We have had red problems in the past, Mal. This year we grew them in pots to a larger stage before planting out. We did this with most of our brassicas.

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  15. Again, another great harvest Sue :-) I can't imagine the size of freezer you must have!. Great to have more than one friend helping with transport at the moment too :-) Best wishes to you both :-)

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    1. We have more than one, Shirley. We have been really grateful for the lifts

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  16. You have me yearning for red cabbage! I'm glad you got to the plot and harvested all those little gems.xxx

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    1. So are we, Dina. I always miss red cabbage when we have a harvest failure.

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