Monday, 1 August 2011

Well, I'm getting geared up for our holiday away - it turns out that it was a good idea not to grow tomatoes again this year - it has been so wet and cool that they would never have ripened on our terrace, as I had suspected, just like last year. I was wearing winter socks and a fleece jacket yesterday! It's a lot warmer today though, and I went out and pulled up the fence around the potato patch and weeded what was beginning to look very untidy. So that's done. The potatoes have died back, so I could start harvesting any time. I'm glad I didn't put them in pots on the terrace. No-one will have to water them for us while we're away. My lovely son Ben helped me put up the poles - I strung yellow washing line up and along them,; I'll make another video shortly, so you can see how it looks; photos don't really show it clearly enough. The Butternut Squash is coming along nicely, but I actually think that I left it too late - we'll see how much it's grown when we get back, but I don't really think it'll have any fruit. I'll just have to try again next year, much earlier this time.
Next year, I'm also seriously considering growing asparagus in the bed where the potatoes have been. It'll take a couple of years before I can harvest it, but that's no problem. Maybe I will be allowed to dig another potato bed - we'll see.
The sweet peas are at last coming into flower - they smell heavenly - a bit like Eau de Cologne, I think!
I picked a big bowl of mangetout this morning, and blackberries too. The plum tree is bearing wonderfully this year - the first time since it was planted -  this is its fifth year, I think, which remindes me of this scripture: “‘When you enter the land and plant any kind of fruit tree, regard its fruit as forbidden. For three years you are to consider it forbidden; it must not be eaten. In the fourth year all its fruit will be holy, an offering of praise to the Lord. But in the fifth year you may eat its fruit. In this way your harvest will be increased. I am the Lord your God. (Leviticus 19:23-25). Fascinating. It's absolutely true. It was true for the new cherry tree as well. This year was the first time it bore any quantity of fruit, after it was left for four years.

I couldn't resist taking a picture of this beautiful hibiscus flower, below, which isn't growing in the Square Foot Garden, but on our terrace. The label says that it should bloom from May through to October, but its first flower opened this week, and I was so happy, as I've been really looking forward to it. Maybe it just doesn't get enough sun there; still, it's a lovely patch of blue, and I planted a blue hydrangea which I was given last week, underneath it. Thank you Lord, for making so many wonderful flowers!
Made some bread this morning, and a big bowl of muesli - with dates and cranberries and pecan nuts. Should keep us all going for four weeks.