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» A good year for the forager ?
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What are you harvesting today?

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default Re: What are you harvesting today?

Post by Ploshkin on 15th July 2018, 7:53 pm

Today I have picked a big load of French beans, yet more courgettes, carrots, tomatoes, strawberries and the last peas from the polytunnel. I have a Kari Sayur on the go - now a firm favourite recipe.

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Post by Chilli-head on 15th July 2018, 8:39 pm

I dug some new potatoes, and cut some courgettes and the first patty pan squash - what am I supposed to do with the latter ? Aside from the obvious that is - chuck them in a Kari Sayur !

Tomatoes are doing ok now, steady supply of Sungold and Cerise cherry tomatoes.
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Post by freebird on 16th July 2018, 11:21 am

Oh, I forgot to mention my first ever, and only, loganberry. The plant has put up five good stems this year, so hoping for a more fulsome crop next season.
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Post by Dandelion on 16th July 2018, 9:05 pm

freebird wrote:Oh, I forgot to mention my first ever, and only, loganberry. The plant has put up five good stems this year, so hoping for a more fulsome crop next season.
Once it takes off, you won't be able to move for berries!!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by FloBear on 16th July 2018, 9:24 pm

My second mini-cucumber and more peas today.
Another decent lot of gooseberries and blackcurrants yesterday, which have gone in the freezer. Saving some in the fridge for summer pudding along with the blueberries that are in there.
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Post by freebird on 21st July 2018, 7:10 pm

Runner beans starting now. Small handful over the last few days.
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Post by Chilli-head on 21st July 2018, 8:35 pm

I picked a couple of just about edible cucumbers (earlier ones were bitter), some courgettes, more patty pan squash that I still don't really know what to do with, and the first few beetroot to make pantzarosalata - Greek beetroot and walnet dip.

I may use the patty pan to make a version of kolokithakia tiganita - courgettes in a beer batter - with them. It works well with a slightly firmer squash - tromboncino courgettes were very good.
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Post by Dandelion on 21st July 2018, 9:32 pm

Runner beans here too - enough for tea tomorrow (unless we have unexpected visitors!)

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by frankbeswick on 21st July 2018, 11:57 pm

Who has eaten my gooseberries,birds or a thief? Only two people pass them,Sue or I; and she is not a thief. Conclusion: birds.
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Post by Ploshkin on 22nd July 2018, 12:08 am

I think the birds have been particularly hungry this year with the dry weather. I guess there's a lack of worms and slugs and squishy things for them. The blackbird raids on my fruit were excessive this year and I even had jays on the blackcurrants. I have only ever seen jays in the garden in the most severe winter weather.
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Post by frankbeswick on 22nd July 2018, 8:35 am

Thanks for the information, Ploshkin. I am planning to develop a fruit section on my second plot, so you have reminded me of the urgency of a fruit cage.

Jays in the garden, wow! They are woodland birds. I have never seen one on my allotment.
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Post by freebird on 22nd July 2018, 9:57 am

Birds methinks, Frankbeswick. I moved my gooseberry bushes into a fruit cage in autumn last year. This summer I picked more gooseberries in total (and only about 15!) than in any of the preceding 10 years.
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Post by Chilli-head on 22nd July 2018, 10:55 am

I am not a huge gooseberry fan - memories of acidic green slime crumble at school - but planted a red variety this year. I didn't net it as it had only 3 berries - but the birds have had them. Netting next year !
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Post by frankbeswick on 22nd July 2018, 11:10 am

Mine were a red variety.
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Post by FloBear on 22nd July 2018, 12:43 pm

My old gooseberry bush has produced about 2.5kg of fruit this year - more than I've harvested from it in the 30 years it's been there. My much newer red gooseberry bush in the fruit cage has produced a small bwolful so far. Lulu the parrot likes the red ones. Luckily I like the taste of gooseberries, even though they look fairly unattractive when cooked.
And guess what I spotted lurking under the huge foliage canopy. The last time I saw them they were about an inch long!


Please ignore the thistles. I did not have sturdy gloves to hand.
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Post by Ploshkin on 22nd July 2018, 12:58 pm

Ooh, Flobear, they look impressive. What variety are they?
Reading about others' soft fruit yields I think that, despite the challenging growing conditions here, it seems to suit soft fruit.
Apart from last year when I had virtually nothing of anything my single 20 year old blackcurrant bush has always produced between 12 and 20 lbs. One nearly as old gooseberry bush averages 7 lbs and I usually pick a couple of big ice cream tubs of redcurrants and leave the rest for the birds. The bushes have never been fed or had any attention apart from cutting out a bit of wood each year (when I remember).
I'm hoping to put up a fruit cage for next year but I will put in some cuttings somewhere for the birds.
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Post by FloBear on 22nd July 2018, 2:44 pm

The squashes came from the seed swap and on the pack it said something like 'unknown provenance' . Seems to be a good year for the curcurbit family as my mini cucumbers are romping away too.
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Post by frankbeswick on 22nd July 2018, 3:17 pm

Yes, I have had some good marrows and the butternut squash is coming on nicely.
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Post by Dandelion on 22nd July 2018, 9:12 pm

Talking of gooseberries, I don't seem to have had that many this year. Either it's been the result of the dryness of the season, or the birds have had them. (To be honest, I've only just become manoeuvreable enough to look under the gooseberry bush to see)

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by freebird on 23rd July 2018, 11:06 am

Ah, FloBear. I thought I was looking at marrows. The squash seeds were from me, originally from my mum's gardener. Knowing him a little better now, I suspect the seeds came from a shop-bought squash and possibly not really suitable for growing in this country. I had fair success last year, though getting the skins cured late on in the season was the hard part. If yours are under foliage, I suggest you clear it so the fruits get direct sunlight.
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Post by FloBear on 23rd July 2018, 6:34 pm

Thanks for that information, freebird.
There are two plants and I can see other squashes forming - is it better to limit the production so they can get on and ripen?
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Post by Chilli-head on 23rd July 2018, 7:14 pm

Those look like fairly promising butternuts you have there Flobear. I have never thinned out butternuts, they have ripened OK - maybe like pumpkins they would be bigger if fewer, but I don't need them to be huge.
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Post by freebird on 23rd July 2018, 9:45 pm

I didn't thin mine last year, but did cut off side shoots just past a fruit, to stop the plants taking over the garden. I had 12 fruits of varying sizes from three plants.
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Post by Ploshkin on 28th July 2018, 7:32 pm

I've had my one and only and first ever fig.
There were 5 on my little 2 year old tree in the polytunnel. As I've never seen a ripe fig on a tree I had no idea when I should be picking them. They are green so don't really change colour. They have been really soft for ages and I tried one about 3 weeks ago and it was clearly not ready. The flesh was dry and tasteless. I've tried one at a time but still the same. The final one, which was the biggest, started developing Brown specks on the skin and it came away easily. There was no smell from it and no sticky bits oozing but we've just eaten it and it was incredibly sweet. If anything I would say it was overripe as it was quite squishy but as I said they have been really soft for ages.
Does anyone know about figs? I've watered the pot every day and wonder if this was too much as they grow in hot climates.
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Post by FloBear on 28th July 2018, 9:13 pm

Afraid I can't help with fig advice as I've never grown them. Perhaps they are like pears and have a period of approx. 10 minutes when they are perfect !!
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Post by freebird on 30th July 2018, 7:47 am

Picked and ate my first Rose de Berne tomato yesterday. Disappointingly watery.
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