Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Der Grosse Rasenstuck

All-night rain has filled the water butts again, soaked the earth and has made weeding quite pleasant. I thinned the carrots and did a final thinning of beets (lunch).
Meanwhile I have just finished reading Richard Mabey's terrific book 'Weeds', the story of outlaw plants - considered culturally, historically and botanically. It looks like there may indeed be fundamental gene complexes shared by many 'weed' species which predisposes them to fast growth and adaptability. So, John Ruskin wasn't far from the mark when he said
" A weed is a vegetable which has the innate disposition to get into the wrong place ... It is not its being venomous, or ugly, but its being impertinent - thrusting itself where it has no business, and hinders other people's business - that makes a weed of it."

"What would the world be, once bereft
Of wet and of wildness? Let them be left,
O let them be left, wildness and wet;
Long live the weeds and the wilderness yet

Gerard Manley Hopkins

Monday, June 26, 2017


Due to my laissez faire method of gardening, I get many things self seeding. Chiefly amaranthus, lettuce, chard and nasturtium. Several generations on and possibly having crossed with some local pigweed, it's a joy to see the amaranthus emerge unbidden in plain green or wine red or a hotch-potch of dappled and infused intermediates.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Hottest June

Here is what the weather looked like yesterday. Which prompted this lamentation on the MetOffice site ...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Solstice Stocktaking

On this, the hottest day of the year (so far) - 32° - a look at how things are progressing. I was late sowing - April 10th for tomatoes, courgettes, squash and cucumber. But even so, cucumbers are ready to cut now, courgettes just a few days away and black cherry tomatoes have formed and will ripen in another couple of weeks I guess. Early riser beans are 6 feet up the poles and charlotte potatoes are in bloom behind them. The corn is as high as a pygmy goat's eye and there is lettuce aplenty and still pickings of chard and kale from last year. No rain in sight so lots of watering to be done...

Saturday, June 10, 2017


A couple of new garden projects this year - a wildflower meadow and hugelkultur. Two weeks ago I constructed my first Hugel and have now begun to Kultur it. I achieved a height of about 3 feet and it's about 10 feet long. So, perhaps not as high as is optimal, and it will settle. Though I can add to it in the fall. I've started it off mostly with bush beans and a few cucumber and courgette. I will be adding some chard, spinach and nasturtiums soon and perennials later.
Anyway, Ta-Da!