Saturday, 10 July 2010

The fruit glut continues

This is the progress so far on the messy corner shown in the previous post - we can now open the shed door fully, and a section to the right of the compost bin has been dug out. More to do, but loads better, thanks to Other Half who has worked very hard on this in addition to his training as an Undergardener. :-)
We're now under water restrictions, after a very prolonged dry spell. You can see the effect on these broad beans - they're about half the size they should be, and there is a distinct yellowing of leaves. We're still watering these as they have beans on, but stopped flowering prematurely. We have started to mulch them to assist - this bed is a more recent one and the soil is not as good yet as the beds which have been in cultivation for 10 years.
This is the first runner bean flower - a drought tolerant variety called White Emergo.
And these are the first marrows. Being a rather inept gardener, I didn't label my pots very well, but tried to put each type of similar plant in a different set of pots, labelling each type of pot once. Ridiculously stupid, and my system failed so two marrow plants are now in the cucumber bed. A cucumber planted between them is struggling to find the light. I really must do better next year...
I cut bunches of mint and sage today for drying, they're now hanging from the curtain rail in my office with the window open behind them. The sage recovered well from the winter freeze, more than can be said for my rosemary - I bought another one and put it in a pot so I can bring it inside this winter.
You can see the effect of the drought on the disappointing potatoes at the bottom of this picture - my crop is going to be smaller this year. We're still watering the potatoes, but digging up the poorliest looking first earlies now. It took well over an hour, but I finished picking the redcurrants today - probably about 25lb of fruit in total. A decent set of blackcurrants today, another few pounds of strawberries, a few raspberries and some vegetables, including the first courgettes. It will take me 3 days to get all this fruit processed and away, then I start on the whitecurrants. Thankfully the gooseberries are not nearly ready yet, so that's one less to deal with. So three days of stripping and freezing redcurrants awaits...
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