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» What are you harvesting today?
by freebird Today at 11:06 am

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What are you harvesting today?

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default Re: What are you harvesting today?

Post by Ploshkin on 8th July 2014, 10:14 am

Ah, I realised that I was going to have the same gherkin dilemma (I might have put them in the seed swap). The only thing I could think was to have a jar of stuff they are going to be pickled in & to drop them in a few at a time as & when they are ready. My Marguerite Patten pickling bible says to either salt or brine them first.

I dug my first Arran Pilots yesterday - always reliable here &don't disintegrate when cooked. I let them grow on quite big as I only do earlies.

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Post by Dandelion on 8th July 2014, 8:27 pm

Picked 1lb of gooseberries and made an almond and gooseberry cake - and very nice it was too, if I say it myself (though it took double the time to cook that the recipe suggested)

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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 Ploshkin on 8th July 2014, 9:43 pm

Dandelion wrote:Picked 1lb of gooseberries
Don't rub it in Dandelion!
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Post by Dandelion on 9th July 2014, 7:25 pm

Sorry Ploshkin... (but nothing else much in the garden apart from the peas seem to be doing anything. Friends at school are saying the same - no beans on the runners, no ripe tomatoes, no courgettes. You would think with the mild weather this year that everything would be very advanced, but it doesn't seem to be that way. Strange...)

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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 Dandelion on 12th July 2014, 3:34 pm

The tomatoes are just ripening in the shed - am lookinh forward to trying the Bloody Butcher (it's red!!!)

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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 Chilli-head on 15th July 2014, 9:43 am

Chilli-head wrote:
I have my first gherkin from the seed swap - don't quite know how to use just the one gherkin - need a few more for a pickle.

The lone gherkin went into a salad - I had feared it might be bitter, being a pickling variety, but no, it tastes just like a regular cucumber.  Useful, because my greenhouse cucumbers seem to be having a rest now after producing a glut, and the Burpless tasty green at the allotment aren't producing yet.

It looks like I might get more gherkins soon to pickle - shame the dill got eaten really !
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Post by Ploshkin on 15th July 2014, 11:44 am

I always have that problem with my greenhouse cucs CH. The first 4 or so are fantastic then everything above that just goes yellow while it is very tiny. I don't know if it is lack of pollination as they are in the GH (but that doesn't seem to be an issue with the first few). I've taken off anything going yellow & given the plant a good spray with Epsom Salts. There seem to be one or two higher up now staying green.
I am growing another odd variety called Dragon's Egg & the first one is just swelling nicely. It's a very pale green & a bit knobbly. I'm looking forward to trying it.
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Post by Chilli-head on 15th July 2014, 12:07 pm

I read a useful article in Kitchen Garden magazine about growing cucumbers. I'm trying to recall what it said now; there were about 3 really useful tips, of which I can only really remember one. Which was to keep in mind that they are a squash, and thus need a lot of nitrogen, so won't do well on tomato fertiliser. Which, because they follow a similar watering regime, it is tempting to give them.

I think mine have suffered from erratic watering. As my main interest in the greenhouse are the tomatoes and chillies, I tend to be scant with the watering because I think overwatering spoils the flavour of the tomatoes and the heat of the chillies. Cucumbers do need to be moist though, and like a humid atmosphere. Or more to the point, the principal pest - red spider mite - likes it dry. Mrs C-H is on the other hand overly kindhearted, and this lead to them getting overwatered and sitting in a pool of water, which of course just washes the nutrients out of the compost.

Just remembered the other good tip - never let their growth be checked by becoming pot bound. IMHO this doesn't help anything much, but especially bad for cues.
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Post by Ploshkin on 16th July 2014, 10:46 am

Thank you for that CH. I didn't know that cucs needed high nitrogen. I've always gone for the tomato fertiliser once they start fruiting (as is usually recommended.) Full of hope for some more fruit I've now noticed this morning that the main stem appears to be starting to rot about 18" up from the base. Funny thing about pot bound though. I've tried them in the past in big 25kg feed buckets without particular success & this year I have gone for much smaller pots (about 10") & the plants seem to be doing better.
I'm also trying a scant watering regime on the toms as mine are always lacking in flavour (apart from sungold) & I heard something on the radio about too much water causing that.
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Post by Ploshkin on 18th July 2014, 10:06 am

6 mangetout!
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Post by Chilli-head on 18th July 2014, 12:45 pm

I cooked an Indian inspired dinner last night; quite pleased with my homegrown ingredients.

Madhur Jaffery's Khatte chholer (sour chickpeas) - don't have my own chickpeas, but onions, tomatoes, first green Jalapeno chillibouncing ), facing heaven chilli powder (last year's) and coriander seed. Served with a courgette dish - home courgettes, garlic and dried red chilli.
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Post by freebird on 26th July 2014, 8:13 pm

A good picking of runner beans tonight. I hadn't realised so many were ready. They're not great, due to the hot dry weather, but good enough for a couple of meals. Tomatoes and chilli from the greenhouse, and two courgettes that 'escaped'. Think they be ending up as courgette cake!
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Post by Chilli-head on 26th July 2014, 8:57 pm

I have plenty of courgettes too !

Today I picked some peas - including some of the Tuthnankamun peas from the seed swap. Some outdoor cucumbers. And - six gherkins from seed swap plants. Mrs C-H has pickled them with dill and garlic

Also got a bit of soft fruit.
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Post by Dandelion on 27th July 2014, 2:44 pm

Yes. I don't think any of us will be able to complain that the courgettes have done badly this year!

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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 Ploshkin on 27th July 2014, 3:45 pm

No visitors are allowed to leave my house without taking a couple of courgette with them. Had my first toms, sungold as always. Beans a long way off, first flowers just appearing.
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Post by Dandelion on 7th August 2014, 11:06 pm

Er, the courgettes and french beans are doing rather well...in fact, a little TOO well!!

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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.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Chilli-head on 8th August 2014, 10:25 am

Don't mention courgettes or cucumbers to me ! DW has a couple of vegetarian friends visiting today, and I have told her that it is her duty to make sure they don't get out the door empty handed  Laughing 
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Post by Dandelion on 8th August 2014, 10:35 am

Our freezer is full to bursting, and I feel a bit embarrassed to serve up yet another meal which has courgettes or squashes disguised somewhere in it (or completely blatant, such as stuffed marrow!)

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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.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Ploshkin on 8th August 2014, 11:41 am

Mangetout are really motoring now. Looking forward to my first bean - looks like it will be a climbing French variety. I'm a bit annoyed with the 'Dwarf Beans' that I bought when most of my last years seed failed to germinate. I don't call things that grow to about 4' & wind themselves round everything in sight, dwarf. I am definitely going to get seed for Lollo Rosso next year. My mum gave me a couple of surplus plants & they have been fabulous.
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Post by Chilli-head on 8th August 2014, 12:55 pm

Some things have grown uncontrolably this year haven't they. I had some peas which were not supposed to be tall peas, but clambered all over the place. And my grape vine is heading off up the quince tree now. The greenhouse cucumbers have usually been clobbered by red spider mite at this time in the season, but have made it up to the ridge of the greenhouse, so I've had to train them along overhead - strange to have cucumbers dangling from above !
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Post by Dandelion on 10th August 2014, 10:13 am

No harvesting here today - we're all going to be paddling by the looks of the weather...

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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.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Ploshkin on 10th August 2014, 10:19 am

We're paddling here now so it will be with you shortly.
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Post by Dandelion on 10th August 2014, 2:45 pm

Very Happy 

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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.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Ploshkin on 6th September 2014, 11:40 am

Plums, plums & more plums.  Even had a moderate crop from a 'family heirloom' tree that has never previously produced even a blossom.  Again I had just one greengage - last year it disappeared, this year I picked & ate it expecting it to be really sour.  It was the sweetest, most delicious fruit I have ever tasted.  It was my intention to grub the tree out as I realise we don't have the right conditions for greengage growing but now I think it will be staying even if I have to hand pollinate.
Courgettes are still going great guns & Mr Fearns purple podded beans are going really well at last.  I have loads of really tasty tomatoes in the gh - a couple of varieties that I will definitely be repeating.

How did you get on with your scant watering CH?  Having been  growing toms for nearly 40 years, this year I heard from 2 sources that overwatering causes tasteless toms so I tried minimal watering, even letting the tops of the plants wilt a bit, & it has possibly worked.  By the way, I'm still getting cucumbers.

Freebird - the jury is out on the self watering pots.  The 2 varieties I grew in them (one an F1 that I have done many times) both seemed to have a problem with fruit rotting & the non F1 variety had chronic blossom end rot which is the last thing I would have expected.  The plants did not grow anywhere near as tall as the others in grow bags & I found that I had very few but extremely large fruits.
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Post by Dandelion on 6th September 2014, 8:25 pm

Ploshkin - have you noticed that the purple podded beans actually have green pods? I was only copying what was on the packet, but maybe it should be 'purple flowered' (although even then I would split hairs and say that the flowers are a pale lilac colour!)

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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.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Dandelion on 6th September 2014, 8:31 pm

One thing I'm NOT harvesting is pears. I planted a little pear tree a few years ago, and this is the first year it's had a crop - well, five pears actually. I was planning to pick them today, as they had been very underripe last time I checked, but yesterday I noticed that the whole crop of pears had fallen on the ground, and most had been scoffed by the blackbirds! No wonder they sounded so cheerful in the morning.
The fence which runs just behind the pear tree is in urgent need of renewing, but I had stuck to my guns and said that I would like the work to be done after the pears had ripened. Now I have no pears and no fence!!
To add insult to injury, we went to Tewkesbury market this afternoon at closing time, and bought a large punnet of pears for 50p, so maybe I was making a big fuss about nothing! Ah well, hopefully next year I'll pick them earlier...

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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.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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