Thursday, 30 August 2018

Dazzling Dahlias and Glorious Gladdies

The garden was lovely today.
There were plums and damsons to harvest
and a few dropped fruits ....
..... more jam making tomorrow I think.
Dahlias and late gladioli to admire.

 Insects to watch ....

 Unusual colour combinations ....
 ..... and strange happenings with the carnations ....
partially reverting to their parents.


The pumpkins are filling out and the courgette flowers have their own beauty. 
My big job was the orchard hedge.
 I had to get rid of the nettles and docks before I could 
even reach it. 
 Now there is more light to ripen the last of the fruit.
I am totally amazed at the resilience of the grass.
Here is a picture from the beginning of August ..
And here it is today.
Steve is working on a fourth compost heap using pallets but I forgot to take photos.
But I did remember that he put a wire brace on the tree trunk planter that split.
 People are still thoroughly enjoying their camping experiences.
We had a weekend in the Woodland yurt recently.
(I will blog it at a later date.)

When the sun eventually came out it was a baking hot day.
I don`t think I would have managed the hedge in that heat.



Tuesday, 21 August 2018

Ladybug Hunt

It was a hot day but the watering is getting much easier, 
not so critical.
The polytunnel was still a very humid 40 degrees.
I managed to pull out the melon plants, now finished, before I had to get some air.
It is great to see the grass growing again.

The sunflowers are beautiful.
Unfortunately in the recent wind, one of the biggest, multi-headed, snapped off at the bottom.
Here is a survivor.
Even some late gladioli are making an appearance.
The dusky damsons and blooming plums are being checked each time we go to the garden.
There are enough here to get the jam on the go .... 
my first job tomorrow.
Also a few Katy apples and one or two dropped pears.
Lots of happy campers around.
One little girl and her mum had had a great time following the fairy trail and enjoying all things fairy.
The sharp-eyed little girl helped me find the stone ladybirds.
Their spots are disappearing and need to be painted again.
The mother, with stunning copper penny hair, 
tidied up the fairy yurt.
Thank you so much for that. 
The other day I watched intrigued, as the smallest tortoise tried to escape. He didn`t seem to realise that even if your claws go through the gap, your shell will not.


My sister has completed an incredible embroidery which we`ve made into a cushion.
I have been trying out pompom turtles.
The crochet alpacas are popular.

Here are the latest wands. They are made from willow trimmed from our very own willow arch.
Each one is individual and has a name.
You will have to hurry as there are only a few left now.
I have some wizard wands on the go.
Here are some flower petal fairies.
I seem to have been doing a lot of crochet lately, most of it experimental.

Having cut all the grass edges and cut back anything dead or tatty in the flower beds, the garden is looking a lot tidier.
Many perenniels are shooting up again. 
The next job to tackle is, the tremendous nettle growth all round the garden. Some paths are almost blocked.
Long sleeves for that though.

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Tasty Tomatoes

This year, the tomatoes are not quite as prolific as usual.
There could be several reasons.
Tomatoes like heat, but perhaps not to the temperatures reached in the greenhouses.
Normally they would be touching the ceiling by now. 
Not so this time round.
Even tagetes failed.

We grew six types of tomatoes this season.
Garden Pearl .....  almost pink in colour ..... I like to pop these in my mouth as I water.
San Marzano .... a very odd shape .... somewhat hollow .... good for stuffing if you can stand them up.
 Tigerella ..... supposedly striped but not as prominent as I`d hoped.
Pomodoro Fiorentino .... lovely in salads ....very juicy favourite.
Rouge Marmande
Pomodoro di Parma
This is today`s harvest at home.
Here is the tomato sauce we have made recently.
It takes 4 pounds of tomatoes.
These are the chillies I`ve harvested so far.
I`ve not been brave enough to try them as yet.
 My favourite corner at the moment.
The cosmos in the rose garden, regularly dead-headed and they haven`t minded the heat.
And I am loving the bed of annual and perenniel rudbeckia.
Most years I find it hard to get these seeds to germinate or survive to flowering. This year has been exceptional.
I think they are fussy about water in the early stages.


Even the dahlias are picking up after their dry start.
I have high hopes for the autumn.