Friday, 22 August 2014

Veg Gluts, Green Tomatoes and Dreams of Old Style Pantries!!

We've been away for a couple of days, and had horrible weather when we got back, so hadn't been to the plot for a few days - we were expecting weeds galore, pumpkin madness, runner bean fest, courgettes a-go-go, beetroots a-plenty. And tons of raspberries. :-) And that is exactly what there was - we came home with a couple of marrow sized courgettes and some smaller ones, a massive bag full of runners, several beets, two punnets of raspberries (leaving lots on the plants that we couldn't carry) and the last few broad beans we could find - those plants are coming out at the weekend, they are really sickly looking this year, poor things.

But everything is looking ok, the cabbages are fine, the toms are very leafy with lots of fruit on there, the cauli has bolted :-( and the italian yardlongs are getting plenty of flowers on there but no beans as yet. The cannelini beans are dripping with pods, so they should be great later in the season.

We had our first couple of ripe toms from the garden over the weekend, with plenty more to come, still green as yet. But they are outside and not in a greenhouse so progress may be a little slower. I still need to strip the leaves and the excess flowers off so the fruits can concentrate on ripening. If indeed they will in this cold weather... The weather seems to have cooled down a huge amount, it feels almost autumnal, I do hope we still have a few warm days to come before autumn/winter kick in, it doesn't feel like we've had a proper summer yet. My feet are usually cold at present, so I know it is generally a lot cooler than it was a week or so ago.

I don't know if it's just me but I do feel a bit despondent about gardening at the moment, just waiting for things to grow and ripen, not much to do apart from weed and water. I know we have some crackin veg to come but I feel a bit lost... We ate our petit pois from the garden at the weekend, and I think that's it, all gone now - is there much point in growing peas if you get such a small crop? I'm also concerned as to how we will store the veg and fruit we are growing - the raspberries are easy, raspberry jam, and the redcurrants made lovely jelly, but we still have some apple mush from last year in the freezer, and most of the fresh fruit have dropped off the tree already before they were properly ripe... and we will have a load of pears too. We may have to think about taking one of the trees out, we have too many pears. We are eating as much of the fresh veg as we can, it's the storing of it for over the winter that is the problem I have at the moment. We don't have a cool garage or pantry, only a small (warm) kitchen and a couple of packed freezers. I would love a house with a proper old-fashioned cool pantry :-) Well, I can dream can't I?

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