- How the Arctic is ‘bustling’ in winter (bbc.co.uk)
Ah, I love it when the garden begins producing. We enjoy regular and generous harvests of Swiss Chard already. The Mange-tout peas will be ready in two weeks, radishes in a few days, and herbs are available in abundance.
All just 3 steps out of my garden door, how cool is that?
Yesterday’s supper is today’s lunch: fresh garden vegetables soup with slow cooked crisp pork belly and spicy chorizo.
1.20 m above ground, 3 m long, and practically the size of one small bed in the best sun-kissed corner of the garden, not taking any of our limited space away. Container gardening with a twist.
This should be perfect for herbs and some salads, and hopefully be a little less slug- and snail-ridden than ground-level beds.
While a certain local community orchard is in full bloom, we joined 100000 others (possibly more) and made our way to RHS Wisley Gardens this May Bank Holiday, where the fruit trees, rhododendron and much more are in full bloom and stunningly glorious.
While we parked in overflow car park 5 on the other side of Wisley village, most people gathered in the central areas and around picnic areas and the restaurants, while we enjoyed a perfectly peaceful afternoon in the remaining parts of those magnificent gardens.
Here are some pictures.
Can you spot the difference?
Their speed of growth is simply amazing. One plant in the middle stands out, but the others show similar growth (not as evident from the photo).
All fruit trees in bloom while the tulips are still going strong. I can almost see the newly sown peas emerging from my window. I can definitely see the radishes emerging, and those Swiss Chard plants which overwintered in the bed are already in full production by mid April.
Makes me think that summer can’t be too far away, no? Certainly feels like it.
The banana plants were covered with a sheet of reeds and bamboo to stop harsh winds or heavy snow from reaching them, covered on top with an old linen sack.
When we returned from our short break mid afternoon this Easter Monday, the thermometer reported a glorious 17 Celsius in the shade, and the bananas had lifted their protective covers up by more than a foot. A clear sign that they thought enough is enough.
Monty’s back, so it must be time to get a spring clean started in Ye Olde Orangerie. Now it’s all nice and tidy and awaiting seedlings, while this black and ageing fellow awaits nothing but the passing of time, at least until feeding time at 6 o’clock.
The garden has been very productive this year. We have many, many more raspberries, tomatoes, peas and beans than every before, plus all the herbs, several batches of leaf lettuce three mini-pomegranates and five olives. Only the courgettes were better in previous years.
We enjoyed some of the runner beans when they were green, young and tender. A good amount of those is still in the freezer. I harvested approximately 1/4 of the remaining beans today, after deciding to let them grow into real beans. The girlish colour-scheme aside they look marvellous, don’t they?
We also made Blackberry jam, Mango jam (with late Indian mangoes) and two batches of yummy Tomato Jam.
Not bad for a tiny suburban garden, methinks.
Over 1400g of broad beans, after shelling. Pretty good for a tiny area, less than one meter square.
I’m mighty pleased with this harvest, especially after finishing removing each bean’s outer skin.
We enjoyed a summer vegetable garden soup with crispy grilled belly of pork yesterday.
Not that I ever had any doubt, but we are now growing our own, which I would have never thought possible.
We are proud owners of a Banana in bloom.
The big tree on the right was 17 years old. Basically, when we bought the house, we could have cut it with ease. We made the mistake of ignoring the wild growing trees until we had to make it a fairly expensive professional job.
Ah well, it’s done, and sunshine once again hits the garden not only between 13:00 and 16:00, but pretty much all day.