Gosh! It seems too early to be really beginning Autumn but the temperature has dropped and my Pumpkins are ready!. I’ve harvested two large Red Warty Thing pumpkins. Six Pumpkin Pie’s and about 15 Acorn Squashes (that taste really nutty by the way).
I’m very happy about everything. Except the Autumn bit that is!
One of our neighbours kindly gave us a table football for our boys to play with. So I gave him this little veg box from my garden. I had great fun putting it together. I lined the box with brown paper and picked all the stuff that was ready. Then I tied a bunch of Spring Onions with string, and some Basil too. And bagged up some of my saved seed, Parsnips, Bush Beans, Poppies and Sweetpeas and left it on his front porch. He said, ‘Thanks very much but what is the long curly thing?’ – Tromboncino.
I’m having some success with Sweetcorn. It’s already pretty big and showing signs of fruiting. It’s been pretty windy here over the last few days and so I was a bit worried about it. But as long as the great dane stays out of the garden (unlike last year) then I think we should be all good.
It’s amazing to me how far ahead vegetable gardens in Portland are (of the UK). I just watched Gardeners’ World and Monty was just planting his Sweetcorn last week. I was never really successful with Sweetcorn in England. A few cobs here and there but mostly it would end in failure. Fingers crossed here.
At this time of year I like to cut my Corn Salad as mini-Lettuces and eat them whole. They are an excellent size for one. I’ve been eating them leaf by leaf for the last few months but now I need the space for something else and so I’m clearing them and eating them one by one. I just slip a pair of scissors under the soil, snip off the root and wash the leaves. All the soil comes off easily since there is no root, just a little stub and you can eat the whole thing.
Just add whatever you like to eat. I’m more than a little obsessed with tuna salad right now.
I grew Edamame Beans this year. And a couple of days ago I harvested some. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting anything to come of the plants. I never saw any seed for sale while I was in the UK so I assumed that you couldn’t grow them. When I moved here the seed packets were everywhere so I thought, ‘let’s give it a go’. A bit like with the Watermelon – you know, what’s the worst that can happen?
So I sowed the seed. Pretty late in the season actually. Around early July time. They shot up. And just carried on growing. The plants are about two foot high. But one of the best things about them is that they don’t need staking. They just stand up by themselves. A little bit like a French Bean bush.
The beans started to appear, and fatten but I had no idea when to harvest them so I looked it up. Edamame beans are actually immature Soybeans so you harvest them when the pods start to swell with something the size of a large oval pea inside.
Then you harvest them, boil them in the pods for five mins or so until the pods turns a slightly olive colour. Then you can either pop them out and use in salads or sprinkle salt and eat them by squeezing the pod between your teeth until the bean pops out and discarding the pod. That’s the way I’ve eaten them in restaurants.
They’re a pretty cool crop. No bother really and the results are plentiful.
Today I cleared away the Pepper plants and rescued the last little Peppers that were still clinging on. The rain has been very heavy here and my Pepper plants were almost horizontal. Goodbye until next year. So they went in the compost bin and the teeny Peppers came inside. They may or may not be edible. We’ll see.
As you can see I have some seedlings growing in the greenhouse. They are Winter Density Lettuce and I plan to grow them in the small bed that I have inside the greenhouse. I’m planning to sow some Radish and Corn Salad too. Just to lift our salad spirits in the depths of Winter!
Next year I might have a go at Salad Burnet, now that Monty was talking about it last week on Gardeners’ World (still love that show). But then I want to do everything that Monty does. I even scratched my lawn and forked some drainage holes in it today. Teacher’s pet.
Well, my Beetroots have been amazing. I sowed three rows of them and it’s been a bumper harvest.
They really are beautiful plants. We bought one of the those little devices that slices things really thinly. And then baked them to make Beet crisps. EVEN the boys ate them. Incredible.
The photo of the day is my Onion harvest. They’ve been drying in the greenhouse and are now ready for storing. They are pungent! Super strong and very juicy. Tissues at the ready. Remember to store them in a ‘breathable’ container. Baskets with big gaps are perfect.
The Patty Pan Squashes have landed. In my garden at least. I love this photo. It’s an optical illusion because they look huge but in actual fact they are only about 4 inches across. They’re cute and oh so snowy white. I love the way that they just appear. One day they are tiny little flower-like buds then next day they are this size. Perfect size.
If you want a nice ‘talking point’ plant then this is your baby. Everyone – and I mean everyone – that comes into the garden comments on them. Most don’t know what they are, the others know what they are, have grown them, want to grow them again or remember them from when they were a kid. They are a very memorable plant. And look great in the basket on the kitchen work top. Use them like Courgettes or Zucchini if you will. The smaller the better.
One of the biggest successes I’ve had this year in the garden is my green Tomatoes, Aunt Ruby’s German Green. They are a big variety producing large, heavy, beefsteak-like Tomatoes. The difference is they never turn red – but they do ripen. Basically, they will turn slightly yellow at the bottom but essentially still be green. And boy do they taste good. They are the juiciest Tomatoes I’ve ever had and the flavour is out of this world.
The only downside of them is that they are a little hard to spot (being green and all). I have missed a few of them in the undergrowth and they went too mushy to eat. I was kicking myself because they are a precious commodity here at My Tiny Plot. I think I might have four plants and each one has produced around five or six Tomatoes. But next year, oh next year, I will be planting more. I may even dig up some evergreens to make room. Crazier things have happened.
And because of their interesting colour they are very photographable. So expect to see some more shots of them cropping up here and there.