Still Harvestin’

Yep, even though the weather has been a bit crummy since the last post – colder than normal and showery days until this weekend I’m still harvesting.

Of course this is said to be a ‘mast’ year and certainly some of the evidence from my garden confirms this – for instance the brambles – which I’m still harvesting. Another bramble and apple pie is distinctly possible tomorrow.

The peak tomato ripening has passed for now, though there quite a few left on the plants (and in the fridge) it will need a bit more sun to ripen them off.  The courgette surfeit is still with us though, plenty in the fridge and some still growing despite all attempts to eat at them every opportunity.

There are still carrots which I planted in a container this year (see picture) not big, but pretty good nevertheless and there are still quite a few of the baby leeks left and leaf beet is still just about worth picking (as shown below)

Carrot & beet leaves

Carrot & beet leaves

There are still the beetroot as well, which have been left probably too long, but we’ve had no call for them until now, and like the onions grown as an experiment. I’ve harvested a few so far but haven’t tried them.

I’ve harvested the onions, well most of them, there may be a few more hiding – not spectacular but better than any onions I’ve grown before. Whether it’s worth growing them is a moot point, since they are cheap enough to buy and the harvest probably represents only a few weeks worth of consumption.

I’ve pulled up the mangetout peas, so the climbing beans will be next, and that will be a second raised bed empty.

Meanwhile, as I’ve already mentioned the courgette plants are still growing rather too well, though the cucumber plants have had it and only produced 3 cucumber between them – not very impressive. The butternut squash (a bought seedling remember) has simply grown about 8 feet long and produced one baby squash so far – not really a good buy at all – still again just an experiment.

The potatoes are probably ready to harvest and I’ll be having a look tomorrow to see if we can have some with our Sunday roast.

The grapevine on the other hand (in the greenhouse) was loaded with grapes – I harvested them today and there are plenty – I haven’t been able to weigh them yet, I’ve just managed to take them all off their bunches – which itself was a long job. The next decision is what to do with them – creating grape juice is the prime option at the moment though some sort of preserve is a possibility. Putting some in the freezer looks probable as well.

Oh yes – I’ve picked all the apples – not actually a great harvest this year despite all the ‘mast’ year indications. Only about 15 good apples in the end.

There are of course hedges to cut and lots of general tidying up to do as well as the harvesting so there had better be some fine weather to come. Ho hum I just hope I have time as well.

Wildlife – well another squirrel is now on holiday a long way from my garden. The butterflies on the buddleia did produce a couple more species – small tortoishell and comma (2 today on the last couple of flower spikes).

It’s noticeable that the birds have plenty of natural food to eat as they have gone missing from the bird feeders at the moment.

Weather – I’ll summarise the months weather based on my weather station at the end of the month. (now done see here)

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