I also promised some photos of developments in the garden. Again, they’re all behind a cut to save clogging the front page..

red capsium

Capsium that ripened in the greenhouse – what a glorious red colour!! There’s another one slowly ripening towards the top of the picture.

aubergines

baby aubergines, slowly growing! these are about golfball sized at the moment.

butternut squash flowers

The butternut squash plant, grown from a seed from a butternut squash i’d bought to roast (and eat), continues to go from strength to strength. Its flowering now, very similar flowers to courgettes. I wonder if fruits form the same way, behind the flower, and that there are male and female flowers? if so, i only have male flowers at the moment. I doubt there will be enough time left in the autumn for a squash to grow, but i may well be surprised. It can get awfully warm in the greenhouse when the sun is shining and the door is closed.

cucumber resting in a seed tray

I think this is the last full sized cucumber we’ll get this season. The others are too small now to reach full size. Again, i may be surprised, and i am of course watering still. I think a lot depends on whether we have a mild or a harsh winter, and how early it bites. For now, though, its quite happy in a lovely warm greenhouse.

Elder?

Now outside: This, i think (or so Mum reckons), is elder – the same plant that produces elder flowers and elder berries, although i’ve not seen flowers or berries on them. they’re growing between the house and the flagstones that abut the house, and as such, are potentially dangerous. The housing sends someone out each year to cut them back, but they still grow back, quite tall too. Michiel took this photograph shortly before he took a large stick to them and beat the nine hells out of them, to get most of the stems off – i think he had fun doing that!

overgrown sweetpea/ipomea supports

This is my rather overgrown sweetpea and ipomea (morning glory) “hedge”, supported by canes and a network of string. Its definetly getting past its best now, most of the sweetpeas have gone to seed (which is good as i want seed for next year!) and i expect the ipomea to follow suit. It was glorious while the flowers lasted, now it just looks a raggedy mess. Still, once i have my seeds they can all come out until next year. I think, though, that i will continue to grow that “dividing” area next year – although i may well grow something else there instead. Crop rotation and all that. The main garden lies beyond it, and the part in which i am standing, i did nothing with this year – mostly because its in shade for much of the day. Still, i think i could do a lot worse than to dig it over this autumn/winter and try to grow crops there next year. I really have nothing to lose.

Kale getting bigger

I wonder sometimes when Kale is ready to eat! I know eating mature leaves isn’t a good idea, as they can be terribly bitter, but if you eat the young ones, then no more leaves develop – or am i wrong in this assumption? Anyway, there are two here – one is much bigger than the other. They can grow as tall as 18 feet, although i don’t think i’ll let these grow that tall. The red bits by my celeriac plants are windfalls – crab apples from the tree that stands over this bed.

tomatoes, all ripe

And finally… it took a while, but my tomatoes are finally ripening. I’ve now got lots on the kitchen windowsill – they’re truly scrummy in a cheese and tomato sandwich – and Michiel goes out there most days to steal a tomato or two. I don’t mind in the slightest. I hope next year is more successful though. I’ll probably grow more, i think. Maybe some plum varieties so i have some to freeze for sauces for the winter, along with courgettes, garlic, and aubergines.

Plans? well, i have to remove the courgettes and tomato plants, and the beans, sweetcorn and peas when they finish. This will leave some big gaps in the beds and i’ve been thinking about what i can get into them. I’ve decided to take a bit of a chance on us having a mild winter, and am going to plant some carrots, onions, chard/spinach and beetroot in the beds, which will hopefully ripen before the weather gets too bad (and i can always cover the plants for the odd frost or two). I’ve also decided to leave the greenhouse up over the winter and will be attempting to grow some other vegetables in there, in some of the pots that had the courgettes in. I’ve asked mum to keep an eye out for some brassica plug plants from garden centers, its way too late for them to grow from seed, but i might get lucky with plug plants. We’ll see. I hope with those, my leeks, celeriac and Kale, we’ll get through the winter with at least some produce from the garden. And i may try to grow some potatoes for christmas!

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