Veg Patch

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

Sunday, 29 September 2013

The great pumpkin debacle !

Those of you that read my blog regularly will know that over the course of the summer I inadvertently planted pumpkins in a rather unsual position. I wont retell the whole story here as it is fully recorded on a couple of other blogs. Mind yer ead  and Squashed probably being the best . 

A quick recap though, basically I bought trailing courgette plants, I built a tower and planted them, the fruits looked rather large and upon close inspection I realised they weren't courgettes. At first I thought they were Vegetable Spaghetti, but later realised they were Pumpkins. Unfortunately they were growing 5 feet in the air at this point. I then spent the rest of the summer trying to prevent them dropping off or blowing over. 

Right so now you are caught up, yesterday I noticed that the whole plant had died and the only thing keeping the pumpkins in place was the net.

It didnt take long to clear back the dead foliage 

And finally cut down the three beautifully coloured and unmarked pumpkins. 

I dont think I have mentioned previously, but I planted three plants around the frame, Only one of them was a pumpkin, the other two were actually courgettes, they grew beautifully but I left them on the ground because I didnt want them to get damaged by falling pumpkins. Now the beasts were down, I decided to let one of the courgettes, that is still producing, to have a go at climbing up the frame. 

And then as the main squash bed was looking awful, I decided that it was time to clear that as well. 

I had planted vegetable spaghetti, more pumpkins and butternut squash plants in here at the beginning of summer, the plants had been beautiful, but now were just a dusty looking mess with the odd fruit laying on the soil, or path.

Gibson watched on as the pile started to grow. 

and this was the final harvest. 1 Pumpkin, 3 butternut squash and 6 vegetable spaghetti

I gave them a good clean off, and moved them to the greenhouse. It was at this point that I realised that maybe I hadn't been such an idiot as I thought, and that I appear to have inadvertently carried out a pumpkin growing experiment. 

This picture is my proof. 

On the left the smallest of the trellis grown pumpkins, beautifully ripe and golden from hanging in full sun, with no blemishes or damage to the skin. On the right, the traditionally grown pumpkin, with uneven colour and loads of blemishes and marks where it has spent the summer coming under attack from all sorts of creatures. The two traditional plants produced only 1 pumpkin between them, but the 1 trellis grown plant produced 3.. So bizarrely, it would appear that growing pumpkins on a trellis produces the best results. In fact I am so please I am considering doing it again next year on  a more substantial, but not as high frame. Watch this space. 

Elsewhere in the garden, the greenhouse was becoming an overgrown mess with lots of green tomatoes hidden amongst the foliage , so I gave the plants a good cut back. I did the same a few days ago to my rude chilli plants and the fruits on them are now going red. 

And I have so many Dorset Naga Chillies, I have no idea what I am going to do with them. 

Outside, I am already getting next years plants off to a flying start. I planted several rows of flowers, but sadly they came under serious slug attack. The only ones left now are the Calendula. 

They have been lightly nibbled, but obviously dont taste very nice as they were left. 

I have replanted the eaten seeds, but it may be a bit late now for them to grow,. They have also been protected with a very light sprinkling of organic slug pellets. I try not to use them as I dont want Gibson to eat them, but these are at least not going to do him any harm if he does. I also added a row of Larkspur and Godetia, to those already there. 

I saw an article a couple of weeks ago about a specialist sweet pea producer, My addiction kicked in, and I found myself ordering seeds. They have arrived and look wonderful . The producer is called Roger Parsons and this is his website  He produces old fashioned sweet peas, so I am looking forward to mixing these with the beauties I got from Ben at Higgledygarden 

In the same article it mentioned that rootrainers were a good way to sow sweet peas so ever keen to try new thing, I got two types to try. 

Well thats all from the garden this week. Out and about we went on a run last sunday with our car club. It was Freda's first long run (130 miles) and she performed brilliantly . We were both a little nervous that we would be coming home on a car transporter, but she didnt let us down. Anyway, we went to a brilliant motor museum, The Haynes International Motor Museum which is in Sparkford, Somerset. It is owned by the company that print the car fixing manuals. 

The cars were beautiful and we spent quite a few hours wandering round. What really caught my eye though, were the bonnet ornaments on some of the cars. There were quite a few American cars in the collection and they were amazing. I dont think you would get away with driving now with some of these on  the front of the car!! 

Of all the cars in the collection, this is the one I would have if I could. Its a Fiat 500 Topolino, a really sweet little car. 

Well thats all for this week, looks like a decent day, so its a run in Freda and a bit of gardening for us 


  1. Lovely post Lorraine many thanks for sharing with us have a good Sunday

  2. Very pumpkin results! I too have hacked our tomatoes back in the greenhouse. Now how many will manage to go red?

  3. Very nice squashes and pumpkins and I'm very jealous of that wonderful green house and loaded tomato plants. :)

  4. Awesome pumpkin harvest. I'm thinking to build a pumpkin teepee next year myself. Looks like it would save space and keep them in good shape. Nice and sturdy too. Your tomatoes and chilis are amazing!

  5. YOur greenhouse is envied:) What a surprise that you have pumpkins now! Go to to make yourself a pumpkin pie! your veggies all look so healthy. The peacock decoration on the car is beautiful!

  6. I'm really enjoying the pictures of all your growing plants! And just add me to the list of those with greenhouse envy! My husband says he will build us one in the future, but only time will tell. Love the pumpkins!

  7. Wow, you really do a lot to trellis your veggies, great job! Thanks for linking up today for Travel Photo Mondays, appreciate it!

  8. heh, love your pumkin story. so much suspense.

    good sized harvest.

  9. I'm amazed by your garden and you really win the blue ribbon for those pumpkins. That peacock car ornament is the biggest & fanciest I've ever seen.

  10. Wonderfull garden and pumkins, have a nice month oktober.

  11. Just found your blog via twitter, lovely pics! Pumpkin thing makes sense, beats having to prop them off the ground, stop them from getting wet and having to turn them all the time.