Thursday, 30 September 2010

Pumpkins Galore!

At the weekend I put all the marrows and pumpkins in the shed to start to dry off, and today we brought them home. Here they are - marrows in the foreground, pumpkins in the background. The marrows are Tiger Cross and have been magnificent - for a first attempt, I'm very pleased. The pumpkins are supposed to be Small Sugar, a small pumpkin, but you will notice there are three smaller and oranger (just invented that word, I think!) fruit in there. It's either a genetic throw back or a seed from a different variety in the packet, as the small pumpkins were all on the same plant. These will keep for months in the house, so plenty of good winter eating there.

It's been a good year for these plants; although I did lose a few seedlings in the late frost, the replantings grew well. The only thing I did different this year was to put a dollop of horse manure and good compost in the planting hole rather than fertilising the whole bed, so I think that's something I'll do again next year.

A note on the colour - I rarely get my pumpkins completely orange while they're still outside, but they ripen well indoors.
The last couple of months have also been good for the weeds due to the rain, so we've started clearing them systematically. Here are the leeks, which are growing on well and are now being freed from the weeds. A late winter variety, for eating after Christmas so they're not very big yet.
And somewhere in here there are strawberries!
The cabbages have also done well, we have enough to carry us into November.
And we have these sprouts to look forward to in November/December. I've never had success with sprouts before, only sowed these as I had a few seeds left from my last attempt. Not sure if it's the weather or the bed I put them in or a little of both. Anyway, this is a rather nice surprise.
And these are the purple sprouting broccoli, which will be ready next March/April. Something to look forward to, a treat you really struggle to buy in the shops.

I'll be doing a review of the year; good, bad and ugly later when I sit down to do next year's seed order and I'll compare varieties then.
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