Thursday, 20 August 2015

A Small Harvest

I must admit it's been a funny year in the garden.  Vegetables that have grown well in previous years have failed to produce this year.  The tomatoes have failed to grow and have very few tomatoes clinging to them and of those that have formed, we are yet to see any turn red enough to enjoy.  Carrots, of which we had a profusion of last year, were eaten into oblivion by slugs this year with very few seedlings making it through to any real size yet.  I couldn't get any black kale to seed this year either.  The potatoes suffered a few digging ups from our local black and white bandito (aka the badger) and that was despite us building another fence to protect our harvest and leaving her nightly offerings of peanuts outside the veg plot boundary.  Even the chard has struggled.

After an initial battle with slugs eating off the first seedlings that came up, the French beans made it through the second sowing and have once more performed well, giving us enough to eat regularly and also to freeze for coming months.  The leeks and spring onions have also been reliable once more with, all be it quite slow growth, the promise of a good crop extending into the autumn and winter.  The courgettes and squashes are looking okay too but we have lost a few to end rot.  The broad beans were a nice surprise.  Phil saved some seed last year and I planted them up in a small space not really holding out much hope but up they came.  Despite the usual attack by black fly followed by the ants, we've had a few meals here and there from the big fat pods.  For some reason I have never really had amazing results with beetroot but I have to say that this year it looks like I finally managed to break that spell with the good sized burgundy balls providing us with lovely raw salads.  We've had a few good lots of lettuce and the wild rocket once more has sprung up in bunches all over the garden of its own accord which of course we have no problem with as it quietly does its own thing without any effort on our behalf.  The raspberries, blackcurrants and strawberries did pretty well too.

So this year has had its ups and downs in the garden but part of the joy of growing veg is the unpredictability of it.  For every failure there is a great surprise which perfectly demonstrates the wonderful fact that you really can't control Mother Nature.

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