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

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Back garden - organised chaos

 Meanwhile, the back garden is not looking so restrained.

No single colour scheme here, accidental or otherwise, but a riot of  yellow and scarlet poppies, aquilegias in every shade from palest pink to deep purple, purple alliums, peonies, lilacs

the only white flowers are the snowballs on the tree!

Saturday, 26 May 2012

The White Garden

The front garden is accidentally white at the moment - white lilacs, rowan flowers behind and snow in summer underneath, even the aquilegias are palest pink this year. It doesn't normally work out like this - there are giant red poppies and purple/blue geraniums ready to flower anytime soon and the whole feel of this small section of garden will change completely.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Extreme Weather

A fortnight ago, we were forecast night-time temperatures of 1c - I don't know if they really dropped that low but I was taking no chances with my just-planted-out-in-greenhouse cucumber so added a layer of cardboard to the fleece for insulation.
This time last week we had heavy downpours and hail, and the baby peppers were still having to be molly-coddled with overnight temperatures down to 4 degrees.

This week temperatures have soared. It is hot! 26 or so in the afternoon and too hot to think!
I'm having to leave the greenhouse door open to keep it cool and even so the plants are keeling over during the daytime.
Next week? Who knows?

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Plotting and planning

Chatsworth Gardener's Hut

 While we were out recently at Chatsworth I was wondering about ways to make my veg patch as attractive as theirs.

 Meanwhile on my smaller plot, I'm wondering which veg are pretty enough to stray into the flower beds - rocket, maybe?

or american land cress with its bright yellow flowers?

 The flowers are managing, as always, to colonise the veg patch.
 I think forget-me-nots growing through the rhubarb look very pretty so they'll be left alone.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

...and today's surplus is....

Having eaten far more purple broccoli than anyone could ever want we're now inundated with cauliflower. I've picked 4 this week, all at the point of bursting. At least, if things come to the worst, I can freeze them.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Just When I thought it was safe to go in the garden......

 .....there's more purple broccoli.

I'm hoping to be able to clear the plants out soon but not until they've finished cropping.
I have decided that they look attractive enough to grow some next year in among flowers.

 Anyway, we also have a slight variation in our diet - a lovely mix of red and green salad leaves

 and some rather small cauliflowers

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Picked this week

we've possibly picked the last of the purple sprouting broccoli - at last!. It was very nice, till we had too much! Now it's starting to flower, so there won't be a lot more. Also got a handful of radishes and a couple of leeks from the allotment
salad leaves at home are growing nicely - beetroot and spinach which have stood over winter, and rocket and lettuce grown this Spring

I pulled quite a bit of rhubarb, just in case the frost caught it - so maybe more muffins or cake this weekend.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Frost forecast

 Although Spring feels really sprung - daisies and dandelions are flowering, the wood is full of bluebells, even the mayblossom is out - frost is forecast this weekend!

cauliflowers and sweetpeas

So, earlier today, I ran round the garden covering anything vulnerable with fleece. Everything in the greenhouse is covered back up and really delicate things such as tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and courgettes are safe in the house.

blauwschokker peas tucked up

 I can't do anything other than cross my fingers and hope for the best, though, for the apple blossom and clematis.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

One day of sunshine

Yesterday we had a brief interlude of sunshine, so we hurried off to the allotment to put up the plastic tomato house and plant out some straggly tomato plants - 4 moneymakers and 2 gardener's delights. we've since checked the weather forecast for the week ahead and apparently Saturday night's temperature could drop to 1!! Those  tomatoes will need several extra layers of fleece!

 I also started clipping some of the grass on the paths, though it was still wet, and lifted a couple of leeks. It hadn't dried out enough to do any digging - everywhere is soaked from all the rain but at least we don't have standing water on the plot, as some have.
Back home, I made the most of the sunshine by sowing seed - sweetcorn, more courgettes, an extra cucumber, red onion and rhubarb. Rhubarb seems an odd thing to grow from seed but we've had a lot of bad luck with purchased roots, so I'm hoping this is a good, even if slower, way to get more plants.

Today we're back to rain.

May Flowers

Apple blossom

Self-set rocket already in flower

Clematis montana

ornamental cherry
I've cheated slightly with this month's flower round up. Yesterday was a rare  sunny day in-between
weeks of rain, so I took the photos then.

Today, things are looking damp again. 

Angelique tulip


Whitebells and honesty

Appeldoorn tulip

More appleblossom