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Thursday, 4 September 2014

Beetroot Heaven

Like a lot of my vegetables this year my beetroot is a lot to be desired .
I have never grown them so big.
Soooo big i decided to make some Sticky  Beetroot Marmalade from a recipe i found in a country magazine a friend gave me and here it is .

I usually grow beetroot because i like it pickled in vinegar,but i must say the marmalade tasted really good with cheese and biscuits. Somebody mentioned making beetroot muffins so i think i will give them a try next......xx

Friday, 29 August 2014

Know your Onoins

I was lucky enough to lift my onions last week just before the rain set in, Thank goodness! They are now safely drying off in the summerhouse ready to be tied up and hung in the cart lodge for the winter.
I grew 3 different varieties this year to see how each variety will keep as other years i stuck to one  sort and i lost half of them to rot. 
The crop has been a good size even the garlic and shallots have been good.

Red Onions
 Golden Onions
 White Onions
 French Garlic


My Potato crop

Well! my potato crop is finally in and safely stored in the garage where i will be supplied with organic potato's until the early spring. 

I always grow Desire' in my clay soil because over the years of growing potato's they always crop the best and keep well in storage. 

I rotate the crop every three years so as not to infect the soil, but i have dug some up with potato blight which i think is due to the heavy rain we have had recently. 

Although they do need water to grow and swell out it can be devastating if the ground is too wet for too long. 
Its me doing the digging, so good for keeping fit.

Hubby showing off  some of the crop, quite a good size don't you think!
No i don't mean his belly

I am very pleased with the yield this year

     This is potato blight which can be very serious if left to spread. 

Thursday, 14 August 2014

My fig tree

I love fresh figs especially the ones that grow in my garden, but this year they don't seem to be fruiting as well as other years.

The small amount that have ripened though have been plump and sweet, but i had to be quick to pick them as the wasps also like them too.

However there are signs more fruit coming so i am keeping my fingers crossed that it will ripen to a good size later on in the season. 
This year the weather seems to be topsy turvy as my rhubarb didn't come to much in the spring and now late in the season its growing like mad again.

The tree is around ten years old and situated on a south facing hedge which has suited so far. That's the trouble with growing fruit and veg it all depends on the seasonal weather conditions.

One fig that the wasps didn't get

Some of the young fruits that will hopefully mature later

The site of the fig tree.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Potato Picking

It was a great day today for digging up some of my Desire late crop potatoes. The storms had passed leaving sunshine and showers to soften the soil making it easy to put the fork in.
I grow Desire every year because they are the only variety that seem to do well in my clay soil. I rotate the crop every three years so as not to infect the soil with blight.
I planted about 3 kilo in the spring and hope to harvest around 4 hundred weight which will last me until next April. I wont be lifting all of them up just now, but will wait for the binds to dry out which will be early September. 
I will then store them in the garage and cover with sacking to give some protection from the frost. Every now and then I'll check the sacks for any disease as one bad potato could infect the whole sack.

Me with muddy boots and hands after digging potato's

My crop of Desire potato's drying off in the sunshine.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Bringing in the harvest

I have always been keen on growing fruit and veg, i suppose i got it from my dad who up until his death at the age of 91 spent many a day cultivating his allotment to supply the family with fresh organic produce. 
The thing i remember most was when mum dished up new early potatoes, carrots, peas and beetroot that dad had painstakingly grown. There is no other taste like it.
Now that mum and dad are no longer here i feel i must carry on where they left off. So with all the skills and knowledge i have learnt from them i am able to supply my family with home grown produce too.
The one thing i am proud of so far in the garden is my sweetcorn, due to the ideal growing conditions this year here in Essex the cobs have filled out well and today i harvested the crop.
I like to pick the corn when it is just ripe as if its too over ripe it tends to loose its sweetness and doesn't keep as well in the freezer, I then blanch them in my Burco boiler for a few minutes,(this is only used for blanching veg) cool it down quickly by putting it in a bowl of cold water, drain it well then bag it up and put freeze straight away. 
If some of the cobs are too long i cut them in half as it makes it easier to put in the freezer bags.