A little domestic wildness

It’s June so it’s time for #30DaysWild , the campaign run by the Wildlife Trusts to get everyone to spot a little bit of wildness every day in June. I’ve been doing this for a couple of years and most years I treasure the chance to stop for a few minutes before or after work or over lunch to notice the wildness in the city around me. This year it’s a little different, with the wildness restricted to my daily walks or my own garden. Working from home, I can nip out with a cup of coffee or over lunch … Continue reading A little domestic wildness

Strange white flowers and a rhubarb cake

Last weekend I spotted some strange white flowers among the daffodils. I looked closer and saw that they were not some exciting new spring bulbs. They were bits of plastic that had fallen off a lampshade. They had been picked up and redeployed in the garden by the transportation of a giant umbrella tree on its journey from the house out on to the patio. The reason for this mass transportation was to repot this beauty, which is nearly forty years old. I acquired it as a student and it has moved around with us ever since. Seen here from … Continue reading Strange white flowers and a rhubarb cake

Spring rocket

In another gap between weather yesterday, I did some springlike things: I harvested a huge bunch of rocket which had got out of control, started flowering and gone very woody. I reckoned the leaves were still edible though perhaps a little tough, so I whizzed them up with some garlic and olive oil and made yet more pesto. It was rather good: Then I cut back the autumn fruiting raspberries and gave them a good mulch. While doing this I observed the desire lines made by cats crossing the lawn, on a direct route from the patio to our neighbours’ … Continue reading Spring rocket

Daffodils and rhubarb update

There have been a couple of cold but beautifully sunny days here and so I have been in the garden and able to do a little spring tidying. A few years ago I told you about my unusual combination of daffodils and rhubarb in a small dark corner near the house. It’s a strange combination but one that has worked for a good few years – for more on this , see here. The daffodils used to be able to compete with the rhubarb but this year the rhubarb has taken over. I seem to have the earliest rhubarb on … Continue reading Daffodils and rhubarb update

Rainy Saturday

It’s been the most dreich day here in Edinburgh, with heavy rain and strong winds. Huge puddles appeared on the lawn, with the newly emerging snowdrops drowning in the rain So definitely not a gardening day but one to use up the very last of the apples. Last week I was weeding round the raspberry canes and found a little pile of windfall cooking apples from my neighbour’s tree. They seemed to have survived the winter and had not yet been eaten by local wildlife so today seemed like a good day to use them up along with the last … Continue reading Rainy Saturday

Twelfth night

It’s twelfth night, the festive season is officially over and for many a return to work, school etc. I don’t return to the day job till tomorrow, having taken an extra day to take my mother to a non-urgent hospital appointment. This was tedious for both of us but mum and I made the most of our journey on the bus, watching the beautiful light in the sky, then came back to my house in the subsequent rain for coffee, Christmas cake, cats, scrabble and the very last of last season’s tomatoes* This little beauty was the last of the … Continue reading Twelfth night

Borscht – or a use for beetroots

Since my garden and allotment don’t quite supply me with vegetables all year round, the weekend started with a trip to the farmers’ market to top up the veg supply. I like the market because I can by localish organic vegetables with NO packaging. I love the way the stall holders pile up all the muddy veg and then tip it into assorted cotton bags – finally a use for these, which seem to breed in our cupboard. They do get all muddy but you can wash the bags (and the veg for that matter) and no packaging is used. … Continue reading Borscht – or a use for beetroots

Hardy Watercress

I was out in the garden, doing some tidying up after this week’s sharp frosts. the temperature dropped to -3 degrees during the week, leaving beautiful patterns on the broccoli and sparkles on the wild rose hips Unfortunately it also killed off the last of the nasturtiums so today’s task was to clear them up. While I was outside I spotted broad beans coming cheerfully up despite the cold: tiny saladings under a cloche: and sweet peas thriving in the seed palace: Signs of spring indeed. The cold earlier in the week had also brought ice to the pond: and … Continue reading Hardy Watercress

Apples and ice

This weekend has seen the first hard frost, with ice on the pond: and lovely frost on the Broccoli I thought I’d better harvest the last of the apples before it gets any colder – Yes these are the phenomenal Howgate Wonders again – I picked 30 on Saturday morning and we’ve had about 6 or 7 already this year so this is a bumper year. They are the most delicious apples, eaten fresh or cooked. They’re a little too big to eat as eating apples but lovely to share between two or three over breakfast. Here they are with … Continue reading Apples and ice

Harvest

Today was a big harvest day at the allotment. There’s a real nip in the air and temperatures of two degrees forecast for next week. So we decided to harvest all the allotment tomatoes before they succumb to the cold. They are still very green but abundant and luscious nevertheless. We picked about 3 kilos, mostly San Marzano. We also harvested the squashes, a ton of runner beans, potatoes, apples and some more raspberriesThere’s still lots to come,  including more runner beans and sweet peas The Christmas sprouts are coming along nicely: Otherwise the plot is beginning to settle down … Continue reading Harvest