Saturday, 21 June 2014

Fruition Ignition!

And so finally the harvest begins. It feels like this point has taken longer to get to than in previous years, but looking here and here shows that we're about level par; some things are further ahead and others behind where we were in each of our first two years. The headline news is that a whole bunch of food is just about to come on-stream which is pretty damn exciting.
The first couple of allotment-based salads of the year have been consumed. Chard and spinach provide tender but substantial leafage, and some picture-perfect radishes lent colour and spice to tonight's plateful.

We also brought onions, chocolate mint, a few broad beans and a couple of beetroot home with us. Not huge amounts of anything, but a totemic moment in the season nonetheless.

Look! Food!
It's not saying a great deal, but I don't think we've ever been so on top of the planting before; credit to Kasia for that as her superior organisation skills have been unleashed upon tray after tray of seeds. This means that on days like today we can set about the weeds without being in a mad dash to get as much stuff in the ground before having to come home. So, with hoe, hand and trowel, we got right up in their faces and let them have it.

In pulling up a flag, the better to get at a particularly obnoxious bindweed root, I sent these ants into a total frenzy. You've got to admire the ants, they don't mess about.

A couple of notes on things that are still some way off becoming viable food:

Climbing beans have, reassuringly, started heading north up their bamboo wig-wams. Last year they grew like stink, but the one before they just sat in the ground, didn't grow and then died. Looks like being closer to the former result this time round: hurrah!

Lettuces in the raised beds are doing well and have been miraculously unbothered by slugs.

Also in the raised beds, carrots seem to be doing fine. I had a bit of a weed of them, hope that didn't alert too many root fly to their presence...

Lets have a look at some flowers now shall we? Spuds first. The mostly white/light pink ones are our Desiree main croppers. The darker pink ones are Maris Peer second earlies.

This is the first time we've grown any Borage. The flowers are super-pretty and taste great, with a sort of cooling cucumber flavour. Looking forward to some pretty salads full of these and Nasturtium flowers.

Peonies are well into flower too. They're over-the-top, blowsy great things, don't you think?

One slight downer is that, for whatever reason, our first early spuds have hardly flowered at all. Regardless, I thought I'd dig up a plant to see if there was much action taking place below ground level.

A plant's worth
Not really, was the answer that awaited me. I don't know if there's much we can do for these apart from waiting before digging any more up. Ho hum.

In really annoying news, (presumably) the same set of semi-evolved half-wits that have vandalised the water supply in the past have been at it again. What particular cause they think they're forwarding here is anyone's guess. It was heartening to see that work was already being done today to put it back into operation.

So, while the success or otherwise of this years crops remains moot, it's fantastic to have even a small amount of home grown stuff back on the table. Here's wishing you a grand season and a bounty of produce, wherever you are.


  1. It seems our slugs have preferred things other than lettuce this year - like potato tops. Not all potatoes produce flowers so maybe you have one of those types. Stupid mindless vandals make my blood boil. Such a pity that their lives are so boring that they need to get their kicks this way.

  2. Don't you just love this time of year when all our hard work,sowing,repotting and planting gives us our bounty!!


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