07 August 2016

How does your garden grow?

Another month on and my garden is still doing well.  We went away for a fairly long period at the beginning of July and I was worried how the garden would fare in our absence.  We are fortunate to have a lovely neighbour who is always more than happy to water it and generally keep an eye on it whilst we are away.

I am not going to take you another tour as I did last month just show you what has changed and grown.



The view from the gate has changed.  The honeysuckle is now in flower and has the most wonderful aroma as you walk past it.  It is as unruly as it looks, it gets a severe haircut every year but still.  The Rowan/Mountain Ash tree behind it is now in berry, a beautiful orange shade which will ripen to a deep red by the autumn.


My herb bed is producing in abundance, everyday I am out here picking for meals often twice a day.  I have plans, in the next week, to start picking to dry herbs as well as to soak in oils for eating and medicinal purposes.  You can see the tallest of the sunflower plants just off centre in the photo.  It is in bed which is slightly higher than the herbs so it is not as tall as you might expect.  The flower head is appearing but is not quite there yet,  I suspect I shall miss its display as I am away for two weeks at the end of the month!


The turnips,


 carrots,


and garlic are growing well and are about ready to be harvested.


I planted out my broad bean seedlings and they have more than doubled in size this month.  They are covered in flowers so I hope we will have some beans to harvest soon.


The french beans have also grown considerably in size.  They have yet to produce any flowers, I do hope that they are not growing tall to the detriment of bearing fruit........


In the polytunnel the cucumbers are growing really well, all six plants are producing several fruits.


The courgettes on the other hand are big plants with plenty of flowers but the few fruits that do appear are not growing very well, I am going to give them a feed this week to see if that helps.


The beetroot seedlings are growing really well.  I haven't been able to get beetroot to germinate over the last couple of years.  It is one of my favourite vegetables so I am really pleased to have these plants this year, even if they will only supply us with one or two meals.


The kale seeds that I sowed at the beginning of July have germinated and started to grow.  Just need to keep those pesky slugs and snails at bay!

I have harvested three pounds of gooseberries and eight of blackcurrant this month.  We have continued to enjoy a continuous supply of salad leaves and have eaten most of the pok choi plants that I shared last month, they were delicious!  I have already sown more in the hope that they will have enough time before the light starts to go to grow into big enough plants to harvest.  This is the first year I have grown this plant after getting some in a veg box a couple of years ago.  Now I know how quickly they grow and are ready to harvest I will sow less at a time and more often to ensure a more steady supply.

What was growing in your garden in July?

26 comments:

  1. It's been a really strange year for growing veg and you're doing well. I have given up I'm afraid, the rabbits won this round. I do have sweetcorn, which we put a fence around so they couldn't get at it. And tomatoes etc in the greenhouse. Next year there needs to be a rethink in terms of how we can better protect the kitchen garden.

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    1. I think we have had it warmer than most at the critical time. We have rabbits in abundance here too. We had to fence our garden off completely otherwise nothing would grow. We couldn't believe what they were eating, we did it not long after moving in so weren't sure what had been planted, we now have a beautiful holly tree that was just a twig before!

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  2. Just wonderful, all that lovely food growing in your garden. I would love to grow cucumbers. We have very little in the garden just now, some courgettes and berries. We didn't know when our building work would start and didn't bother. Looking forward to next year though!

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    1. Cucumbers are easy to grow, although I suspect like me you would need to grow them undercover even the outdoor varieties!

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  3. your garden is absolutely wonderful! you are so very blessed. we have just been raided by the vervet monkeys. it really is hard to keep our bigger veggie garden growing. lets hope some good will come out way.
    happy new week ahead and thank you for sharing our little space. so very beautiful.

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  4. Perhaps you could try pinching off the top of one of your bean plants, to see if that encourages it to flower! We only have herbs in pots, because of the neighbours' cats treating our garden as their toilet .......

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    1. Ah that must be so frustrating! I will try pinching out the tops, thank you, that is a great idea.

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  5. It all looks good. I adore your display of honeysuckle, I have a new plant which is twining around the bird feeder. A couple of blooms too. The greenhouse plants are doing well here and soon we will have runner beans - fingers crossed. Take care x

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    1. We have two like that, we inherited them! I am now pondering the wisdom of moving the one in the picture to where it is now I should have given it away I think it is so much work!

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  6. Herbs are the part of our the garden I'm more pleased with. They are so beautiful and smell wonderful! I use them for seasoning every meal but I have yet to discover how to preserve them (I have to look up how to dry them and am very curious about the soak in oils for eating and medicinal purposes you mention). I love to see photos of your garden, it is very inspiring!

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    1. I have been drying herbs for a few years now but soaking them in oil for eating and medicinal purposes is a new venture this year I am going to start with one or two and build from there ;)

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  7. I wish my garden was doing as well as yours but you are putting way more "work" into yours than we are in ours. We have cherry tomatoes just ripening. and I think peppers will be next!!

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    1. They are a lot of work aren't they. We put use our time as we want, I am sure yours is filled with lots of productivity too just in different places!

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  8. It's a great time of year, lots of things in the garden are ready to harvest. Your honeysuckle is lovely, I have one which grown up a trellis at the side of the window and the most beautiful aroma wafts in when the window is open.

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    1. It feels like it takes forever but it is always worth the wait. It is a good job I don't have to rely on it solely!

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  9. The veg in your polytunnel looks great! What is your main reason for using the tunnel - to increase the temps in your colder climate? I have had a hard time with beets also, but I actually have some seeds to plant out today. Another year, another try!

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    1. I use the polytunnel to extend my growing season. There is a lot I couldn't grow without it. I start off many seeds in there in trays as they wouldn't germinate outside. I hedge my bets with some plants like courgettes/zucchini which I plant in and out (this year only the plants inside are fruiting). Last year I grew everything in there as it was too cold outside. This year only the root veg is doing really well outside the rest is growing but not fruiting. We do have warm days but not enough of them, the past three to four weeks the temps have been around 15°C during the day dropping below 10°C at night. We are forecast to have warmer weather next week for us that is 20°C but it doesn't always arrive, but I always hope it will!

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  10. Your garden is looking fantastic. You'll soon have quite a nice harvest out there. I love the colors of your honeysuckle. I don't think I've ever seen that color here. My honeysuckle is the usual pale yellow/white type. I love it though, the scent is just wonderful. I was nodding along with your discussion of chopping it back. We had to cut ours way back this spring too. Ours grows along a fence separating our property from the house next door. Those people had a lot of landscaping work done over the past year, apparently telling the workers to cut down any honeysuckle that was creeping over the top of the fence. I can understand this, but they did a terrible job and actually cut it down very far on our side of the fence too, killing large areas of it. Nobody consulted us about this, which was kind of infuriating. My husband ended up cutting all the dead parts out and training the still-living parts up onto the fence in the hopes that it would grow with more exposure to sunlight (this area is in the shade of both houses for much of the day). In the end, it has grown back very nicely and is just starting to climb up the fence on its own in the worst-hit areas. It feels triumphant to have it survive what they did to it. :)

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    1. I haven't seen the colour of our honeysuckle anywhere else either now that you mention it! I am glad your plant survived it's terrible pruning job.

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  11. gorgeous abundance!! i love rowan trees...those berries are so vivid against the green.
    we won't talk about my parched garden...but i *did* get a few handfuls of blackberries from the new bushes i planted in the spring. which only makes me want to plant more of them!
    i'm cautiously optimistic that i'll get some late summer salad greens once the obscene heat subsides...and, if i'm lucky, some turnip and more kale. *fingers crossed*
    xo

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    1. Now parched is something I rarely have, overwatering and cold yes but never parched! I would gladly swop some of your heat for some of my rain but I don't think it would work would it ;)

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  12. Your garden looks really productive! How lovely that you have garlic...I recently discovered that all my elephant garlic bulbs were eaten out by slugs. Every....single...one!

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  13. Such a beautiful space you have. Our courgette plant flowered on the hottest day and they promptly died and we thought we wouldn't have any fruit, but lo and behold it flowered again last week and we now have some baby courgettes growing! It's lovely seeing how your garden grows <3

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  14. You have such a productive and varied garden. I love beetroot too, but have had no luck with it. Maybe I gave up too soon. I'll add it to my list for next year. Our peas and runner beans are keeping us busy at the moment. Sweetcorn is tantalizingly nearly there. We have about 25 plants which means only about 4-5 meals for us, but it is worth it. We went away recently and our cucumbers missed us. They are now odd shapes from missing the daily watering. Children still love them. I really keep meaning to bring on some more leafy salad seedlings.

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  15. Such abundance!! I bet you haven't needed to purchase a veg box :-). Sadly our garden has struggled from lack of sun and lack of attention :-(. The courgettes, beans and purple sprouting broccoli were massacred and the sweetcorn barely grew. I think I am having to accept that although I would love to feed our family, I cannot physically manage. With this in mind once the season is over I will be shutting down various sections of the garden so there is less to deal with next Spring.

    Hope you are enjoying the lovely weather!!

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