Sixty at Sixty

In 2022 I will reach the fine old age of sixty, one of those milestones in life that you imagine will never happen, but there you go. I hated reaching fifty but these last ten years have taught me many things, including that life will throw things at you in ways that you don’t expect. So Sixty is to be celebrated. I plan various ways of doing that (see end of post for details) but one is to see if I can harvest sixty different edible plants from the garden and allotment this year. It sounds like a lot but … Continue reading Sixty at Sixty

First harvest of the year

This New Year has been milder than ever, according to the weather people. It’s certainly been quite balmy here so I’ve been out in the garden, surveying the raised beds and doing a bit of weeding. The worst bit of the garden was probably the patio – a functional place where we can eat outside and a place to store random pots rather than a thing of beauty in my garden. It was even more messy than usual though so I got out my ancestral kneeler and old kitchen knife and got to work. Between the cracks in the paving … Continue reading First harvest of the year

Happy Christmas

Here we are at Christmas Eve and the Advent Calendar is complete, finishing off with a festive robin and the traditional Christmas pudding, fully alight! In my search for all things wild and wonderful, I discovered that a hedgeful of sparrows has moved into my neighbours’ hedge, providing us with festive tweeting whenever we open in the kitchen door – a true joy. Finally, today I harvested the sprouts from the allotment, a little nibbled by some of our allotment guests but still quite juicy and edible. So we’re all set for Christmas, with a few more family members than … Continue reading Happy Christmas

Onions and an advent update

This week has turned out to be rather oniony, the result of two impulse onion buys which were probably a mistake. The first lot of onions were actually flowers – alliums – but onions really. They were an impulse buy from my local garden centre, which was selling off all sorts of boxes of overpriced and overpackaged bulbs at 70% off. I bought these because I felt sorry for them and was worried they would just be dumped if nobody bought them. So I’ve filled a big pot with flowering onions and another one with tulips – something to look … Continue reading Onions and an advent update

Six from a frosty allotment

I nipped along to the allotment today to see if Storm Arwen had done any damage (it hadn’t). So here are #SixOnSaturday from the allotment. This year’s very impressive runner beans were still standing, if looking a little the worse for wear, so I cut down all the bean tendrils for the compost bin: The sweet peas are still hanging on in there, so I left the wigwam up to provide them with a bit of support. Didn’t manage to get an in focus photo though (I blame my frozen fingers). I found a desiccated bean and brought it home … Continue reading Six from a frosty allotment

A very purple SixOnSaturday

Astonishingly I’ve managed a #Sixon Saturday today – here we go – First of all in the pic above is a bunch of flowers from the garden for my Mum, all blues and purples and whites: lavender (still flowering), a deep purple salvia, white cosmos, blue phacelia. (that’s all the purples though) The sun is still reaching the back of the garden and these Shropshire Lad roses are just gorgeous. They smell as good as they look. The roses in the front garden are also still doing well. The one above is a Gertrude Jekyll. Also in the sun in … Continue reading A very purple SixOnSaturday

Halloween in the garden

Halloween comes round again and the clocks go back and the dark returns, with little glimmers of light to get us through the winter. Here’s a cheery little squash, and it is very little, with a tiny birthday candle to bring us light. Just to see how tiny this is, here is it is beside some of my apples. Oh it’s not that small you say. Well how about compared to this one: A monster Howgate Wonder of course. Here are all three together, alongside a sensibly sized Sunset apple Left to Right – Monster Howgate Wonder, average sized Sunset, … Continue reading Halloween in the garden

More autumn wonders

I’ve been away on a trip to Higland Perthshire – a birthday treat for my husband to traipse around various historic sights and take in some autumn mountain air. As well as history and landscape there were plants. We visited the Fortingall yew tree: 5000 years old but with tiny signs of new growth and full of tweeting birds. We went to the Loch Tay Crannog Centre, recently damaged by fire but with a vibrant visitor centre and information about prehistoric vegetables, of which there were very few it seems. Nearly everything seems to have been introduced by the Romans … Continue reading More autumn wonders

Autumn delights

It’s been a glorious autumn day, with a slight nip in the air but lovely sunshine and leaves beginning to fall from the trees. As I cycled to the allotment this afternoon, leaves blew in my face and conkers fell from trees. It felt a little scary but also quite exciting. I dread the end of summer but when autumn really comes, it brings its own joys. One of these joys is planning next year’s crop. At the allotment, I got down on my hands and knees and hauled strings of couch grass from the soil. We’ve had a bit … Continue reading Autumn delights

Every one a winner

I’ve fallen a wee bit behind with the blog but here is an update from last week’s allotment show. It was a joy to take part after last year’s was cancelled. It threatened to rain but in the end the sun shone. I arrived in good time in the morning to rush round the plot and harvest my vegetables, piling them up outside the shed so that I could choose and polish any prospective winners. Here was my initial harvest: raspberries, apples, ruby chard, courgettes, potatoes, sweet peas and a huge bucket of runner beans. You can also see my … Continue reading Every one a winner