Perfect timing…


We were scheduled to have mushroom risotto for dinner tomorrow so these were a pleasant surprise after last night’s rain. The cep looks the business, the shaggy parasols are plentiful and scrummy but that little orange milkcap tastes divine.  I’ve got about six types I can identify with confidence to eat from the garden. Last week, we had a giant puffball omelette and on Saturday night we had a cep and field mushroom pizza. Hopefully, by the end of the week the milkcaps will have started to appear in number – they are earmarked for a pasta dish. If we’re really lucky some ‘chicken of the woods’ might appear on the old peach tree stump. I wish all gardening was this easy – mother nature doing her own thing.



Stringy beans but the best squash

IMG_3760Picked this lot yesterday to have with roast chicken dinner.  Well, those beans were truly yucky – I must have picked them too old.  Carrots were just thinnings to allow others to bulk up a bit.  That bicoloured lettuce is amazing we’ve been picking it for weeks on end and still masses left (didn’t have that with the chicken!). Best of all is the ‘Golden Nugget’ squash it tastes as good as it has performed – 100% germination and best of all it grows like a courgette – the squashes form around the base of the plant not on trailing vines.  A compact productive plant – looks like I’ll get around 6 squashes per plant.



All those blighted tomatoes are now history. The trailer is loaded and ready for a trip to the tip! A couple of tomatoes plants escaped the blight hence my ‘bumper’ crop below. We were going to get a polytunnel for next year but having read everything I can on blight I’m thinking of taking a different tack. This will involve making use of a very warm west facing wall with a large overhang from the soffet so no rain can hit the plants, making wind breaks for either end, planting in pots, using the drip watering system already in place, and making (not sure how yet) a front piece that can come down over the tomatoes at peak blight times. The down side is I’ll be restricted to about 16 plants. Worth a try I think.

After a belter of a storm my seedlings are pushing through. Carrots (to fine to see here), swede and turnip through but no sign of those elusive parsnips. I’ve transplanted my ‘April’ cabbage seedlings. For once I’ve been ruthless and only transplanted planted the biggest and strongest so hopefully the outcome will be 12 decent plants.

IMG_3752I must thank ‘North By North’ for suggesting Gold Nugget squash.  These are doing really well.  Just got to hope they taste as good as they look. They grow a bit like a courgette and don’t trail everywhere.  This will definitely be on my seed list for next year!

IMG_3750Just been out and got this little lot while taking piccies. The chili peppers are Doux des Landes – a mild green chili nice grilled. Had to pick this basil as it’s about to flower and the rhubarb went crazy after the thorough dowsing it got from the scary storm.

IMG_3756The herb patch has gone mad. The mint is covered with bees as is the marjoram and the lavender. My tiny sage cuttings from last year have now formed a hedge at the back and the borage is taking over. Think this will need a severe going over come late autumn.

IMG_3754Finally, the calabrese is starting to form little green heads.  I’m snipping these off as soon as they are usable and popping them into a freezer bag. If I wait until I’ve got enough for a meal before picking  half will have gone to seed so this is a little experiment to see if I can maximize the crop. I’ve found once the first head is chopped they soon sprout more heads and then you can pick fresh for eating. Happy gardening everyone.