I made a conscious decision when I start writing this blog over 2 years ago that I would only write when I had something different to say, this is my third season growing and to be honest, I am growing pretty much the same things and in the same way, so what would be the point of writing about them again?
I have been quietly, (well if you don't count the iPod playing at full blast all the time, through speakers, with my favourite 70's and 80's disco classics) getting on with the business of growing us some food. So far this year there has only been one problem, and that is with a new crop for me. Beetroot, or as Jim calls it "The food of the devil" . His mum was a school dinner lady and it appears that she always brought home leftovers for tea. Poor chap not only did he have to eat school dinners for lunch, he got them at home as well. Anyway, through most of the summer it would appear that pickled beetroot was high on the schools menu list, therefore he has a deep aversion to it. I decided it might be nice to try and get him to eat a home cooked, sweet earthy beetroot, so I planted some.
They started well and were growing at a reasonable pace, then a couple of days ago I noticed that loads of the leaves looked dead.
After posting a picture on twitter last night I was left with two possible causes, either the leaves had been scorched or they were suffering from a leaf miner infestation.
I popped out this morning for a closer look at the leaves and quickly found this
So leaf miner it is then. I have cut off and destroyed all of the offending leaves and shall keep an eye on the remainder. Apparently, though we can still eat the beetroot, so Jim will still get his chance at Beetroot rehabilitation.
Those of you who read regularly will remember last summers frustration when my peas, wouldn't grow up my beautifully constructed "Great Wall of Barton" . Dwarf peas were never going to make the top, Note to self, always read the packet properly. So this year I deliberately purchased a variety called "Colossal" in the hope that things would be different. I am happy to report that they are. These are growing like mad
Elsewhere, the "Leaning Tower of Barton" has been relocated to another bed and this year definitely has three trailing courgettes growing up it. No pumpkins this time, Although it was very entertaining trying to stop pumpkins dropping from 5 feet up . I am happy to report than in a week or so if this weather keeps up we will have a courgette glut.
The potatoes and onions are ready to be dug up, in fact I may do that in the morning.
And this year, my broad beans have survived and are currently covered in fattening pods.
In the greenhouse, all the usual suspects are growing furiously, I already have a few tiny tomatoes and the cucumbers are growing really quickly, some straight and others not so straight..
The one in the top photo became our first summer crop of the season and was consumed yesterday evening for our tea.
Chillies, it goes without saying, are taking up loads of room
Waiting for them to go red always takes an age . The whole greenhouse looks very different to a few weeks ago when it was full of plants of the hospice sale.
I have posted loads of pictures of flowers already this year but here are a few more. our house, and all the neighbours are already full of wonderfully smelling blooms and there are many more to come yet. The Sweet Pea's have finally started to come thick and fast and there are so many cornflowers.
The Dahlia's I got from Georgie at Common Farm already have buds on them and the hanging baskets I planted up are looking splendid.
In fact it all is
I have just been and picked these so shall be having them with some ice-cream in a bit .
In other news, Woody the baby woodpecker fledged last saturday. He spent a day or so hoping from tree to tree calling for his parents, and then just like that he was gone. The nest is silent, but I know they will all be back and hopefully have babies again next spring.
Gibson has been spending a lot of time with his friends Flo and her puppy . I think I told you about the puppies who were born on St Patrick's Day. They all had Irish names for a while, but one by one they left all except for one who was originally named Conner. My neighbours decided to keep him and he has been renamed Dodge . He is a sweet little dog and he adores Gibson who is very gentle with him. Each time he comes to visit , Dodge hops into bed with Gibson for a cuddle, its very sweet.
Right that is all for now, I am off for Strawberries and Ice-cream . Enjoy the sunshine.