welcome to my little suburban oasis, filled with flowers,fruit trees and vegetables

Friday, 30 July 2010


picked first common scarlet emperor runner beans today. really early for us and lots on the plants. hoping to keep the blackfly at bay - it's more of a nuisance this year than usual.
also picked the last broad beans - cleared the plants and lifted them just before it rained - good proper rain this evening rather than the drizzle we've been having. left with comparatively large empty space ready for autumn cabbage and cauliflower.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

looked out of the window this morning to discover cabbage and broccoli seedlings up-rooted. quick dash outside in dressing-gown to re-plant them. have now found the culprit - a fat female blackbird - she returned to the scene of the crime this afternoon obviously looking for more goodies. I like birds in the garden but these are my winter dinners that she's trying to kill off!

Tuesday, 27 July 2010


have the usual crop of self-seeded flowers growing in the veg patch

love in a mist by the cabbages

welsh poppies sneaking in between the onions

but also some new-comers this year
lobelia under the patio table - has to be self-set from over wintered seed as I haven't grown any this year.

chard among the leeks - either self set from last year's chard or some of last year's seed which didn't germinate then

wild rocket - self set on the opposite side of the path

alpine strawberries - growing and fruiting all on its own

oregano - tried for years to get marjoram to grow without success. last year I was given a packet of greek oregano - this grew much better, survived the cold winter and has sent up seedlings all over the garden

we grew potatoes last year in amongst the runner beans - obviously we didn't lift all of them!

these lavender seedlings have been growing for years in a window box, just above a couple of lavender plants. at first I thought they were another herb I'd sown and forgotten but now they're larger the scent is more obvious. waiting to see their flowers as the two plants nearby are different types of lavender.

Monday, 26 July 2010

things growing like crazy

there's not a lot of space between the alderman pea row and the raspberry canes but the pumpkins are trying to leap the gap!

painted lady runner beans have overgrown their wigwam a bit

chillies setting

the other side of the pea row with one pumpkin growing along the top wire. grew pumpkins in peas and beans last year and all did really well - so doing it again and keeping fingers crossed for large Halloween pumpkins - none setting yet.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

picked this week

the last currants and raspberries

more rhubarb

the first of this year's broccoli - green magic


lettuce, rocket and red chard

alderman peas

mangetout peas


the first chilli - wasn't very hot, so will use last year's dried ones and leave this year's to ripen

first of this year's painted lady runner beans and blue lake climbing french beans

broad beans

Friday, 23 July 2010


picked the last of the red and black currants today.

and almost the last of the broad beans.

but, yesterday, picked the first of the runner beans.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

sweetpeas and scarlet emperor runner bean flowers

have the most gorgeous deep purple, heavily scented sweetpeas flowering among the runner beans. deliberately set there to attract bees.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

picked this week

this week's rain has helped everything grow quickly so another very busy week merely picking produce from the garden.

alderman peas and crystal lemon cucumber

delikett mangetout peas still cropping though not as quickly as in the hot weather

loads of broad beans - probably heading straight for the freezer

some more french beans from the dwarf plants

rhubarb for jam

sweet crunch and crystal lemon cucumbers - full size ones not ready yet

alpine strawberries
summer cabbage- probably Golden Acre

lots of lettuce though this is now starting to bolt and rocket

lots of redcurrants and raspberries still. some blackcurrants. thinned the apples - took off 3lbs of small fruit.

Monday, 12 July 2010


After so many weeks of hot dry weather, the rain has returned. It's been forecast several times but not materialised. Today it rained all day. The water butts are probably full again. Unfortunately the slugs and snails are also back with a vengeance. They've been a nuisance - eating the lettuce and cabbage seedlings - but this evening the paths were covered in them, even some very disgustingly climbing up the windows!!
Having had a ready good quantity of rain already today, it is forecast to rain all week. Great!

Sunday, 11 July 2010

picked this week

another of the tiny cucumbers - the size of a large courgette

the first french beans - hadn't noticed but they've stopped flowering. hoping that picking some beans and extra watering will start them up again

lots of fruit - red and black currants, strawberries and raspberries

the first of the broad beans

a couple of cabbages
lettuce and rocket
mangetout peas

Friday, 9 July 2010

first sweet peas, gorgeous colour and incredibly scented, with nasturtiums and fuchsia.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

hanging basket tomatoes

having too many tomatoes and never enough garden space, I'm trying to grow a small fruiting cherry-type one in a hanging basket with nasturtiums and purple stocks for company. in the dry, hot weather it's been difficult to keep pace with the amount of water needed but some fruit has set and hopefully will ripen soon.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

picked this week

salad leaves - lettuce, rocket, spinach - and mangetout peas

strange crystal lemon cucumber - looks odd but tastes like cucumber - and a small normal shaped one

alpine strawberries and lots of larger ones

pointed cabbage, probably Offenham Flower of Spring, a couple of bursting cauliflowers and several dinnersworth of Feltham First peas

Pretty pics

Had brief loan of expensive camera this week so I've been round the garden taking pics of all the flowers - starting with the painted lady beans.

lavenders, foxgloves, stocks, orange welsh poppies, heuchera, poppy from birthday present seed and a perennial fuchsia