The longest day.
I don't seem to find time to take photos of the vegetable garden because I'm too busy... well gardening! I feel that a blog describing vegetable growing needs illustrations to show off nature's bounty, so I don't post without pics. I have been busy removing the Leylandii hedge at the bottom of the garden as it is on a slope and I can't trim the tops. So I have decided to remove it altogether which has let in more light anyway. Moreover, I discovered that the encroaching elderflower trees which were damaging the hedge were not originating from next door as I thought but were on my side within the hedge itself. I'm using a sharp lopping saw that cuts through the branches very easily and can even cut through the main trunk at the base without too much effort. Much safer than a chainsaw. The branches are being shredded which I can slowly add to the compost bins. That may take a few years. Here's progress so far, a very dirty but satisfying job.
The raspberries will benefit from the increased light levels.
Peas. These are so sweet and a big family favourite.
Also making its way to the plate are onions, spring onions and broad beans.
More kohlrabi. I would like to plant out the leeks but they will go near the sprouts and also where the broad beans are.
I bought some chard and more spring onion seeds but haven't sown them yet. The chard will be sown with the purple sprouting broccoli and can be planted where the onions are as these will be pulled up soon.
Care and maintenance
I watched a blackbird help itself to a nicely ripening strawberry so anticipating a bumper crop this year I quickly rigged up some protective netting. It will do for this year but I think I will need to buy some better netting.
In the greenhouse the tomatoes have been planted into their final pots and tied in with the watering system set up. Flower trusses are developing nicely.
The aubergines have also been potted into their final pots. I've put them into smaller pots than last year as I hope this will encourage more fruits to develop. I'm going to leave them on the shelf so that they get more sun rather than in the partial shade of the greenhouse floor.
After nearly giving up on my sweet potato sprouting, these shoots developed at last.
The parsnips are producing fresh green leaves. I expect the clay soil is not going to allow long tap roots to develop though.
Looks like there will be courgettes next weekend.
I have the dreaded asparagus beetle. There were plenty of eggs laid and this weekend I noticed that they had hatched and I have been removing them. The caterpillar is not as attractive as the beetle.
The kestrel potatoes look great and beginning to flower, I hope it's reflecting what is happening below ground.
The pumpkins are fruiting, so I must feed them well. This reminds me that I still have to find space for the butternut squash.
The overwintering onions are falling over and are ready to lift. They are a nice size too.
Finally, I bought a lemon tree which fills a space in the conservatory left by a ficus tree that didn't over winter well.