29 July 2010

Catch up

The last month has seen a lot of strawberries, tidying and weeding, followed by a holiday and a couple of plots looking like I hadn't done any weeding... I know it's goes with the territory but apparently the allotment officer came round to inspect plot no 2 this week again when it was look a complete mess - aaarrrrggghhhh! The stone wall falling down at the front of the plot isn't really helping matters. Guess I'll be getting another letter soon...

Anyway, back to the review. The last month has seen a couple of firsts. Despite having the most unhealthy look plants I managed to grow one Okra. I hate Okra, but Mrs D likes it and confirmed it was tasty. Not sure it was worth all the effort to be honest and so far one Okra off for four plants (not to mention those that died in the cold weather earlier this year) isn't a great return, but there are a couple more growing.

Secondly, my first tomato grown at home. I know it's pretty sad, but I always fail to grow them for various (neglectful) reasons, but the one taking over the attic room is doing very well and has begun to fruit. Weather we get enough to make sauce from them is another matter altogether... Must get the greenhouse put up!

Now, the strawberries - gratuitous gloating follows! We've had a lot, even to the point of giving some away. They were great strawberries this year and to celebrate we made a lot of stuff with them:

Strawberry cheesecake
Strawberry flan
Strawberry jelly
Jam in the making
Jam, which did set, bit runny but the way we get through it, it's not going to be a problem!

We've had quite a few peas - all of which have been eaten straight from the pod, largely by the kids - and broad beans, although I never seem to get as many as I'd like - we like broad beans a lot! We're eating Charlottes for several meals a week, and very tasty they are too. Kids haven't started complaining we're having them too often either, so I take that as a sign they like them as well! The French beans (Major) are just starting off - they've been having to compete with the weeds so haven't been doing so well and some of my dwarf beans appear to have developed a climbing habit... Must have got mixed up with the labelling somewhere!

The summer raspberries are doing OK, most of the gooseberries seem to have been eaten (by what?) as did the red currants (must put netting on better next year).

Then we went on holiday for a week and this happened:

We ended up with 16 courgettes/marrows, all the lettuce ready at the same time (of course), some of the main crop peas coming through, good sized beetroot and some reasonable (it's all relative!) sized carrots. We're currently working our way through many different courgette recipes However, I'm with Nigel Slater - we should call them Zucchini it just sounds much more exciting!


Woody Wilbury said...

I'm suffering a courgette glut too. My own fault - 10 plants was always a bit OTT!!! but they were such sturdy plants it was a shame to waste them.

Very envious of your strawberries; what variety are they? We grew Marshmello in pots at home this year and they were very good. They are sending out loads of runners now so if I get myself sorted I think I could treble the number of plants for next year. Yummy!!

RobD said...

Ah the ol' too good to throw away problem. It's always upsetting having to throw away good plants isn't it?! I have 6 this year - 3 yellow (Goldie) and 3 green (can't remember what they are!). I did see a plot last night that had at least 16 plants on it though and they were on holiday. There's a lot of big looking courgettes there!

The strawberries largely came from 12 (yes just 12!) plants, which were Chelsea Pensioner. They through out loads of runners (somewhere over 100 last year!) and this is their last year so I'll let them throw out plenty of them before digging them up. I'll do you a swap with some Marshmello if you want?