in the garden

Once again I’m linking up with Lizzie of Strayed from the Table for The Garden Share Collective that aims to create a community of bloggers who share their vegetable patches, container gardens and the herbs they grow on their window cills.

vegetable garden end JulyAfter a cold wet spring, July was (for the most part) a blaze of sunshine and after a couple of deluges of rain the vegetables seemed to shoot up almost overnight. There’s still too much bare soil in the garden which is partly due to not getting everything sown in the spring and partly because we’ve harvested some of the crops.

Sowing

Over the past month we have sown these vegetables:
beetroot, carrots, sugar snap peas, lettuce, rocket, spinach beet and cabbages (Durham Early). A few squash plants have self germinated though I’m not sure they’ll come to anything.

Growing

runner beans on cane wigwams

runner beans St George

red and white flowers of St George runner beans

The Runner beans and climbing French beans are climbing up the canes. So far I’ve only harvested beans from the bottom half, so I haven’t yet tested the theory that the beans will hang down outside the canes for easy picking.

carrots, beetroot growingThis is the bed of beetroot and carrots successionally sown. Last month they looked like this.

Harvesting

red dessert gooseberriesred dessert gooseberries

We’ve finished picking these fruit and vegetables:
cherries – our best crop ever. It’s been a bumper year for English cherries and netting them so that the birds couldn’t eat them first was a good move.
gooseberries (green and red dessert) – some of which were very small
blackcurrants – very small fruit this year
pak choi – not going to grow this again as only finishing up old seed
rhubarb – enough for desserts, rhubarb bitters and rhubarb relish

lettuce beetroot beans cutting celerylettuce, beetroot, climbing French beans, cutting celery

In the middle of picking these fruit and vegetables:
loganberries – a  blackberry and raspberry cross – eating them like this
carrots, beetroot, spinach beet, lettuce, rocket, rainbow chard, various herbs and new potatoes. I’m just about keeping on top of the courgettes but found one that had grown marrow sized that I used to make Lemon Marrow Marmalade (much, much better than it sounds).

Just starting to pick autumn fruiting raspberries and climbing beans.

Things to do

asparagus beetleWe discovered Asparagus Beetle has been chomping away at the asparagus, turning the fronds brown – you can see this in the rather poor photo above. We tried to eradicate the beetles by squashing them, but there were just too many so Bill sprayed them off, which really was a last resort, but heck I don’t want to share my asparagus with anyone, least of all some pesky beetle. The main infestation has cleared and now we’re keeping a close watch and squashing any beetles we see. When the foliage dies back we’ll cut it down and burn it with any other foliage on the ground nearby.

tomatoes in greenhouseThe tomatoes seem to have been on the cusp of turning red for ages. I appear to have planted all the Super Marmande and Ailsa Craig in the greenhouse and the cherry tomatoes in the garden whereas I’d planned to split them evenly between the two. This is the result of my erratic labelling. Next year (as every year) I vow to label properly and remember to move the labels when I transplant different varieties.

leeksThe leeks in their nursery bed. The ground has had a pretty good soaking in the last week, so these will be transplanted to their growing positions next week.

dill flower
The dill and coriander have gone to seed, so I’ll put a paper bag over the heads to catch the seeds, some of which I’ll use in the kitchen and some I’ll sow next year.

Our main task for the coming weeks is just to harvest everything and eat or preserve it. We have little more to sow for the rest of the year other than lettuce.

Why not join in and show us your garden?

TheGardenShareCollective300pix

27 thoughts on “in the garden

  1. Liz says:

    Its great to see an aerial shot of your veggie patch, it really shows how people can use their space to produce fresh vegetables. I love the difference between our gardens. I really must grow some leeks next winter here.

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    • Anne @GtSlamseysFarm says:

      Yesterday Bill picked off over 600 beetles (I know, who can believe that he would count them all, but he is A Counter of Things) and then decided that they needed another spray. Hope you don’t have them, though I suspect you’d know if they were there by now.

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  2. Sarah says:

    Lovely vege Garden! I was wondering if you have a seat in there as it must be such a lovely place to hang out (when all the work is done of course!) I’m going to start saving seeds. It sounds very easy and Julie also mentioned seed saving too so that’s my aim. I bought Alchemilla mollis and Artichoke ‘Purple de Jesi’ seed to try and emulate your “accidental” planting scheme (and feverfew too wasn’t it?) I think I’m a bit obsessed with this mix of plants!

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    • Anne @GtSlamseysFarm says:

      The kitchen table overlooks the veg garden so I sit at every meal and gaze over it. Good luck with your planting – once you have Alchemilla mollis and feverfew they’ll be all over your garden.

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  3. Pat Machin says:

    You are doing well, especially considering the awful spring we had. A traditional preventative for asparagus beetle is to grow pot marigolds with the asparagus. I expect it wouldn’t do any good while you’ve got the nasty critters but they might help in the future ~ and look good as well.

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  4. Jane @ Shady Baker says:

    Your garden looks amazingly productive. Those berries are fascinating, I have never eaten gooseberries. I love your tomatoes, they looks so healthy and neat and tidy! Great photos, lovely garden tour thank you Anne!

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    • Anne @GtSlamseysFarm says:

      Bill adores green gooseberries but I’m less keen and prefer the red variety. The green ones are best cooked and make a very good pie but the red ones can be eaten as they are and are sweet and juicy.

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  5. hmulholland says:

    Popping in from the Garden Share Collective, I love the look of your garden! I like how you make a list of what you’ve picked, easy to read 🙂 Question, how easy is it to grow gooseberries? I’m new to the gardening world, I’m so used to them coming in those small green fruit crates that I’m amazed someone can grow them in their backyard. (Silly I know).

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    • Anne @GtSlamseysFarm says:

      Like most things, it’s easy to grow gooseberries when all goes well – just put the bush in the ground, prune every now and then to keep the centre of the bush open and enjoy the fruit. In a bad year there might be mildew or sawfly.

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  6. cecilia says:

    Your garden is absolutely stunning, i love those raised beds .. and kept so neat. I would hesitate to to shoot such a big shot of any of our gardens as we are reaching the stage of harvesting in amongst the weeds.. mind you all the big weeds are thrown to the pigs and sheep and chickens.. so i guess you could say the gardens are joint ventures, your glasshouse look delightful too.. I hope your tomatoes start to turn soon. i have my jars ready for mine!! c

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    • Anne @GtSlamseysFarm says:

      The good thing about a big shot of the garden is that it’d difficult to see which are weeds and which are crops whereas a close shot may be far too revealing! It’s taken me a while to realise that the reason some of my tomatoes are taking so long to turn red is that they’re actually a yellow variety. I really must learn to label my plants better.

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  7. andreamynard says:

    Your garden’s looking wonderful and is so productive! Have just been picking lots of dessert gooseberries too, have the scratches to prove it!

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    • Anne @GtSlamseysFarm says:

      I think it’s impossible to pick gooseberries without getting scratched no matter how careful you are. When we grew field scale gooseberries we trained them along wires which made it a bit easier.

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