Saturday, October 31, 2009

Bent Cucumbers

Last year I grew 'Kyoto Three Foot' cucumbers in the greenhouse where the fruit hung down from the rafters thus.

This year I let them meander along the ground outside and this was the result.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Oxford '09

Yesterday was the 2nd (annual?) get together of garden bloggers in Oxford organized by Patrick. Vegplotting, Alternative Kitchen Garden, Ben from Real Seeds, Vicki Cooke from Heritage Seed Library and Dr.Simon Platten/British Homegardens each spoke about their projects/interests for 20 - 30 minutes. Most of the afternoon session was reserved for maverick potato & tomato breeder Tom Wagner - father of Green Zebra, Banana Legs and Schimmeig Creg tomatoes, to name a few. This was the final stop for him on a 2 month tour of Europe - giving workshops on breeding techniques and just spreading around his enthusiasm. Very inspiring!

This year I had a go at growing potatoes from true seed, and the results were unremarkable but I've had a lot of fruit set on both Verity and Skerry Blue so I'm thinking I'll sow some more next year. And I got a few pointers for increasing the yield.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


My first really successful year for growing cabbages - 10 heads of Mammoth Red Rock - the one on the left was 7 lbs. A few slug holes on the outer leaves but the netting was pigeon proof and excluded all but the most persevering cabbage whites. The pantry shelf now groans under the weight of a gallon of sauerkraut and three quarts of Rotkohl, the yield of the five pictured. (If you want to try making sauerkraut for the first time, this youtube video demystifies the process. Watch and feel empowered!)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving Day...
The weather continues to be mild and fair, but after last week's rain I shifted my drying chilies to the airing cupboard. There's feathers everywhere as Doris and Gladys are in moult and just about one egg a day is all we get from the five of them. Tomatoes continue to ripen in the greenhouse (mostly cherry tomatoes now - Riesentraube and Peacevine), 32 kilos to date.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Next Year...

Nights are drawing in, and I'm already sending off for seeds and planning next year's crops.