Sixtyish on Saturday

In a small departure from the Six on Saturday rules, today’s post celebrates my challenge to harvest sixty different edible plants from my garden and allotment this year. Last week I hit my target, with the wondrous Howgate Wonder apples coming in at number sixty. I’ve now gone over the target and you can read all about what I’ve harvested since January here This year the Howgate Wonders are bigger than ever. I weighed one and it was 1lb! Not all are quite that big but there have been about thirty of these lovelies on the tree. So far they’ve … Continue reading Sixtyish on Saturday

Not counting my chickens..

.. but my plan to harvest sixty different fruit, vegetables and edible plants this year is nicely on track. As I explained back in January the plan is to see if the garden and allotment can produce sixty different vegetables, fruits, herbs, or edible flowers and weeds over the course of the year. I’ve now recorded forty-five – see the running total here – with my climbing French beans the latest in the harvest record. So, I’m fairly optimistic that I’ll reach sixty by the end of the autumn harvest. However, I’m not counting my chickens too soon as all … Continue reading Not counting my chickens..

The joys of home – six on Saturday

Earlier in the week I blogged about the joys of tomatoes and my envy at my friends’ ability to grow them so easily in the south of France. Today’s #SixOnSaturday celebrates what’s growing in my Scottish garden today. Peas – these are Prussian Blue – or at least I think they are. They are from saved seed and I seem to have got the varieties mixed up a bit. Anyway, they taste great. 2. Overwintered broad beans – Aquadulce Claudia I think . They’ve been superb this year. These are the last of a massive crop. I’ve also had a … Continue reading The joys of home – six on Saturday

Start of the preserving season

The jam making season has started here at Reclaiming Paradise. I’ve got a glut of green tomatoes, plums, runner beans, courgettes, a couple of marrows, apples on their way and one giant cucumber Where to to start? Some of the tomatoes are ripening but a few of the others have blight so I reckoned I need to pick some and start the preserving season. Whether to make plum jam and green tomato chutney, or green tomato marmalade and plum chutney? I decided on the marmalade first – it’s simmering away as I write: See here for the recipe – green … Continue reading Start of the preserving season

In praise of peas

It’s time for the annual pea admiration festival. For this week’s #SixonSaturday I’ll tell you about my six (so far) favourite peas. This undervalued vegetable is nice enough though a little boring when it comes out of packet in the freezer. When you grow your own in the garden though, it grows fast, climbs quickly, produces magnificent flowers and tastes devine – almost a different vegetable. I discovered growing peas almost by accident. I had always grown mange tout and thought they were pretty ok – usually I grow ‘Norli’ which provides a sturdy if unexciting little pea Until I … Continue reading In praise of peas

Welcome harvest

I’ve been away for a little while, catching up with family, swimming in lakes and stretching my legs rather more than I intended. It was nice to get away from some of the everyday stresses but it was also nice to get home to see what was happening in the garden. Here are some of the joys I came back to: peas – green and purple, broad beans, raspberries and a few strawberries, lettuce and the last of the redcurrants. Quite a feast. The red currants have been a bit of a disappointment this year as the best of them … Continue reading Welcome harvest

July garden: foxes and thunderstorms

Falling behind with blogging again but here’s some of what’s been going on in the garden: Lots of flowers all coming out just now. Strawberries and raspberries at their best – and good enough to make some rather yummy strawberry scones to share with my sons who managed to be here at the same time for the first time in many months. Vegetables coming along slowly. Here are some of the peas and the first cucumber: We had an impressive thunderstorm and extensive flooding at the weekend. All fine in my garden but the roads round about turned into rivers. … Continue reading July garden: foxes and thunderstorms

Six foxgloves, six peas and a lettuce glut

Once again I failed to do a #SixonSaturday post but I did submit these rather lovely foxgloves via twitter. These are all growing along the back hedge and the new fence at the side of the garden, some transplanted from the raspberry bed during a weeding session back in January – for more see here – they have come out rather well, I think. I had wondered about doing a six for my six varieties of peas, but didn’t quite get round to it. So here they are for you, rather late on Sunday instead: I’ve already forgotten which one … Continue reading Six foxgloves, six peas and a lettuce glut

Yet more peas

I’ve been sorting out my saved pea seeds, hoping this year to not get them mixed up. I’m storing them in separate containers. In the picture above, bottom left, Duke of Albany, bottom right, Blue Prussian, top, Salmon Pink. Duke of Albany in full growth here: Blue Prussian here (with some photobombing soft fruit): And the slightly crazy Salmon Pink: These were all heritage peas which I acquired at seed swaps over the last few years so I’ll be delighted if they all grow again next year. The saved peas have been sitting on a sunny windowsill for a few … Continue reading Yet more peas

Seed saving

It’s been a great pea season again this year. Despite a slight mix up with varieties – see here – the Prussian Blues, the Salmon Pinks, the Norli and the Dukes of Albany have been very productive, providing us mainly with pea salad but also a couple of soups and some pea and broad bean guacamole. I used to grow just mange tout peas because I couldn’t see the point of growing whole peas. Now I know that the peas straight from the pod are so delicious they are almost like a different vegetable to the ones that come in … Continue reading Seed saving