Monday, 21 August 2017

Damson Days and Straw Strimming.

We must have harvested about two thirds of our damson crop.
As it`s a miserable wet day, I will be making the next batch of jam, if I can find enough jars.
We`ve probably had about 15lbs so far.
A brilliant crop.
We have also dug some more potatoes....very odd shapes.
 After the rain the newly planted lettuce are looking good.
Lots of butterflies around still.
They are loving the marjoram and buddleia.

I love the colour combination of rudbeckia and marjoram.
The nicotiania sylvestris is towering over the surrounding plants and smells sweet.
In the herb garden, which I cleared recently, the growth is all new and the angelica needs thinning out.
The sweetpeas continue to perfume the garden.
I carry on deadheading but do not use them as cut flowers any more.
Apart from cutting the grass under the orchard trees, we used the strimmer to dessicate straw with a view to using this finer material for our next cobbing efforts.
A lot landed on the surrounding area.

Last week Anne, Steve and I dug some clay from the Woodland yurt area and we hope to make a plaster layer for the cob shed, starting this week.
Another project is to use the willow arch trimmings to continue our new bit of wattle fencing.
One idea I had yesterday was to fashion viewing windows in the construction.
Watch this space!!!
Pumpkins are ripening far sooner than is usual.
And this lovely flower is called erodium.
I must try to remember the name. 

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Reaping Rewards

Mid August and we are well into harvesting.
Busy times but still very important to sit back and enjoy it all. 
There was a lot of rain this morning but it turned into 
a hot sunny day.
After visiting the mobile library, which comes to our village every 3 weeks, we set to making plum jam and tomato sauce.

There was plenty to use up.
Later in the day, this was the result.

Yet to be labelled.
Over the weekend we ate two of our own melons....delicious.
There are still quite a few to go.

 This is a heritage tomato. It weighs 13 ounces.
The onion crop is drying in the garden room.
There are two layers here. 
And one white aubergine.
Must have come in the mixed seeds. 
I have started a big project in our own garden.....
completely digging out our rose garden to get rid of the ground elder which is rampant.
I am potting up all my plants, some of which have needed splitting.
I can hardly move in my greenhouse.
And the holding area outside is over-flowing.
 Around the rest of the garden, asters are beginning to look good.
Twynings Smartie dahlia is stunning.

Petunias continue to thrive. The ones on the right are climbers.
And cosmos continue to give pleasure.
I love August.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Buttefly Bonanza

I spent a lovely afternoon at Freshwinds Garden today.
It was warm and very peaceful, just an occasional bray from the donkeys and the buzz of bees.
Everything was basking in sunshine.
Apples ripening....

..... sunflowers sunning....

.......damsons dangling.....

......plums plummeting (or will be soon).....
..... tortoises trundling.

And as always campers camping.
How I love to hear the excited voices, as they discover things in the garden.....(albeit mainly animals and not my flowers!!)
I changed the water trough.
The dahlias were a mistake....not enough room for the roots.
They are now in the raised bed.
I replaced them with geraniums and two huge busy lizzies in a sale at Ed`s Nursery in Staplecross.
I visited yesterday and I`m sure it will be the subject of another blog entry... I had a great time there. 
In the polytunnel I felt as if I was in a tropical garden, surrounded by insects and myriads of butterflies. I was rather intent on getting good photographs and before I knew it I was dripping both from perspiration and condensation. 

The growth is phenomenal.
Just look at the morning glories, now touching the ceiling and spreading.
The tomatoes weighing down the branches.

And lots more to come.
A stray shoofly plant from somewhere...
..... and tobacco plants from somewhere.
All getting along nicely.
Seriously, some of the morning glories will have to be trimmed back soon as they are shading the ripening tomatoes.
Perhaps the butterflies are attracted by the colourful entrance.
And despite the season, things still looking good.

 I came home with runner beans, tomatoes, plums and several seedlings to pot up.
Freshwinds is a little bit of heaven.