Veg Patch

To read the story of my Veg Patch in chronological order use the links in the Blog Archive

Monday, 26 November 2012

Is it raining?

Thats the first thought that has popped into my head every day since my last blog entry. Most mornings the answer sadly, has been Yes.. For those of you that dont live in the UK, our obsession with the weather is currently reaching epic proportions. It wont stop raining! and not just drizzle or the odd shower. Its torrential. So gardening hasn't been top of the list of things I have been able to do for the last couple of weeks. 

Today though, a glimmer of sunshine meant I was quickly outside for a proper inspection and to give the poor chickens house a clean, as I havent been able to do it properly for a while. 

I noticed the other day that Fat Bob and Big Dave the resident pigeons had been snacking on my brussel sprout tops. So I had to throw a couple of nets over them again to try and stop them. 


Luckily they are not interested in the sprouts themselves which at getting to be a nice size, If there is a frost later this week, as predicted, that will finish them off nicely and we can start eating them. 


Hopefully that will also add some flavour to my parsnips, which have now lost all of their greenery and are looking a bit of a mess. 


The Japanese Onions I planted a while back are trying to grow, but I dont think the rain is doing them any good, they have been stuck at this size for weeks. 


The broad beans are trying hard though.. There are now a number of promising sized pods on the plants and loads more flowers. 


Leeks and cabbages are still thriving and are gradually being eaten, but thats about it for the plants. 

I noticed a week or so ago that a rat or mouse was trying to dig under the henhouse and into the run. I filled in a couple of the holes and tunnels they dug, but they keep appearing. I dont want them in the run so today at the farm shop I purchased a nice big rat trap. 


I have some experience with these, as our last garden had a nest under a dead tree. I became very adept at disposing of crushed rats. So it didnt take long to set this one up with some nice tempting peanut butter. Hopefully by next week I can report the problem solve. Don't worry I wont post pictures!! 



And thats it. Brief but I thought I better post something as it has been a while. 

Gibson is up to all his usual things. Here he is enjoying a frozen banana this afternoon in the garden. 


And a couple of nights ago, on the beach in some wild weather, watching the foam from the sea flying into the air.


Finally, even though its November and horrible, the WInter Jasmine by my kitchen window is in full bloom, and makes for something cheerful to look at, whilst I do the dishes.. 



Tuesday, 13 November 2012

The quiet months.

The periods between blogs are becoming longer as the days get shorter, and there is not a lot to report from my vegetable patch at the moment. 

I have had a couple of first's this week though. Finally I have harvested some of my winter vegetables. Savoy cabbage and leeks to be exact .

They were both planted when the garden was at its early stage of development and I have watched them grow over the summer, wondering if they would ever make it to the table. They have suffered slug attack and far to much water but seem to have survived nicely. 

A family lunch on sunday meant a quick inspection earlier in the week to see if I could use them. The answer was a resounding yes, so early sunday morning I was in the veg patch armed with my sharp gardening knife and my trug. 

I picked a suitable sized cabbage


And cut it free from the bed. a quick trim of some of the older leaves was also needed. 


Next was the leeks. 



I picked the 6 largest in order to let the others keep growing. 


They were all then popped in the trug for the trip up the garden


And after a lot of washing were prepared ready for lunch





They were delicious , even nicer as they were from my own garden. 

Nothing else much to tell you from the veg garden. My Japanese onions that I planted from seed a few weeks ago, are just poking above ground but are far to tiny to take a picture of. The sprouts look like they will be ready for the pot in  a couple of weeks, and there has still not been a ground frost, so the parsnips remain in the ground. 

A couple of our visitors from last winter have reappeared over this last week. 

The squirrel was nicking the bird food..


and the egret was taking some sunshine on the fence. 


Gibson is fully recovered from his surgery and back on top form. On saturday we went back to his breeders with 3 of his 7 brothers and his mum and uncle and a couple of other guest dogs.. What followed was an hour of total mayhem, but they all seemed to enjoy it and we did manage to get them to sit down for a couple of photos.


Gibson is far right. 


The daschund was called Dudley and he stood up for himself very well amongst this lot. 

and finally I have had an article, I submitted to the Thompson and Morgan website published there. Its about my first year as a new gardener. You can see it here


It is different to anything on this blog.. and on that note time to get on with my day. Hope you all have a great week

Saturday, 3 November 2012

A Bit of Down Time.

I have been left kicking my heels the last week or so, there is nothing much to do in the vegetable garden and its driving me mad. I want to be out growing things, and enjoying the garden, but its that time of year when all the summer stuff is gone and the winter stuff is perfectly happy and not needing any attention. 


There are plenty of leaves to clear up, but as the trees surrounding the patch still have leaves on them, I have decided to wait until they are all down so I only have to clear up once.

Today I did a very small bit of clearing up . The butternut squash plants were well and truly dead, making the remaining squash look a bit odd.. 



It didnt take long to cut them free


And 5 minutes with the hoe and that bit of the bed is ready for something new in the spring. 


I also cleared up the dead rhubarb and removed the remaining cosmos from the asparagus patch. 



And thats it. The grand total of a weeks gardening. 

We haven't even been on any of our outdoor adventures. Gibson was under vets orders to only walk short distance's on the lead. On Tuesday he was given the all clear, and so now we are planning to get out and about again next week. 

It hasn't stopped him spending time outdoors though. He had a nice morning in the garden with the hens today. They had some veg peelings, and after initially thinking he might try and steal a few, he gave up and sat in the sun whilst they finished their lunch! 




So thats it for outdoors. Inside more nice smelling and tasting things have been appearing in the kitchen. 

First I had to use up all those Green Alicante Tomatoes. A chutney was the obvious answer.

So it was prepared.


Cooked


and put in a couple of jars. 



Don't worry I wont be sending it out a christmas presents.. I shall be enjoying it with my cold turkey.. 

And the final triumph in the kitchen this week.  Chelsea Buns



They were pretty tasty.. In fact that lot disappeared quickly and I have made them again since. The bathroom scales have started to groan when they see me approaching!! 

Anyway not a very long post but hopefully next week I will have more to tell you.. Off to a Bonfire and fireworks display now in Mudeford, A proper British celebration, not like Halloween. So have a great evening, we shall.