I have been trying to wait, and now sow squashes. Mainly as the grow quickly, but also because we still get a frost until the end of May. So any seedlings would be fairly big by then, and would also have to be hardened off. In the past, some of the varieties that I have grown have been brilliant, others less so. I have also had the misfortune of some being eaten by slimers. This is why, I have sown a varied and large variety.
The Varieties as follows:
Ghost rider pumpkin
Marina Di Chioggia
Honey Bear Squash
Striato Di Napoli
Tondo di Piacenza
Tiger Cross marrow
Bush baby marrow
There are loads, and normally, one, maybe two plants would be sufficient for a family. I have been known to give away courgettes to friends, family, colleagues, anyone who I knew didn’t mind fresh veg. There is the risk, that I will be over run. I am sure that they will be used, given to a good home, or meet their ends in a chutney of some kind.
Ghost rider pumpkins make an appearance, I have sown these previously, and also saved their seeds. Patty pan and yellow scallop were a really good variety that was sown a couple of years ago.
Yes, there are lots and lots. I have sown one or two of each variety. Seeds have been put into the pellets-I know not all folks uses these, but I don’t like getting told of by the parents for having soil all over the house-on their edges. Apparently this stops them rotting, not so sure, so testing this. Covered with a propogator lid and left in a warm place. I have also sown some tongue of fire climbing beans. Think these are borlotti beans. As well as some experimental painted lady running beans. Ma has been champing at the bit to sow running beans directly, but I have been trying to dissuade not to sow directly as these get eaten by the clay so early.
All that remains to be seen now is whether any of these triffids germinate.
The sun is out, the the wendy and poly are steaming warm, and I am still sore from planting potatoes. With today being the first of April, I thought I could rest a little and sow squashes and cucumbers. We have a frost until the end of may, that leaves approximately eight weeks during which these seeds will hopefully germinate and are likely to become triffids.
For the moment I have now sown a ghostrider, I fancied something of a break. A few additional varieties of winter squash have been sown instead. No small pumpkins either, I wasn’t particularly enamoured by sweet dumpling. That’s not to say mama H won’t encourage me to sow one. Many of these are sprawling varieties. Last year, there was success with the Cobnut butternut squash being grown up bamboo canes, rather than out across the ground.
The runners and riders:
cornells bush delecta
striato di naploli
tondo di picanza
bush baby marrow
There are quite a few varieties, but I do have a tendency to sow a large number. Besides, not all of these may actually germinate. Half of these are to be observed on a warmish window sill, the others will be in a unheated prop in the four tier blowaway. The 4TB does actually get quite warm now that it is warming up a little. I take solace in the fact that the celeary and the carrots sown in there are just starting germinate. The hollow crown parsnips have yet to make an appearance.
That’s Peace and Happiness, before you have to go translate it…
To the untrained eye, this looks a mess. However, if you were to ask me nicely; I could tell you what most things are and where. The gallery above, is a walking tour if you like of the half plot. I will try and get some specific bed pictures up. I appreciate that it looks like a great big green mess in the gallery. Today is the first day of the Summer holidays for me, so an opportunity to see what I need to do. It goes without saying, that weeds are a problem. This time last year, we had a deluge; and the weeds were well up to ankle height. As well as that, I didn’t have so filled raised beds. They are there now, and they contain crops.
Two more raised beds have, thanks to Pops, been constructed. I had scavenged last week, bags of garden waste. Sat on the plot for best part of a week, these were emptied today in the beds. I know that these are upside down, before you point it out! The pots are on the spikes, so that hopefully no one gets hurt. It is safe to say, that having raised beds has been a boon. Whilst the clay is fabulous, full of nutrients; the position of the plot means that the whole thing gets flooded. This brings pools of water, slugs and other things that eat crops. With the battle against the weeds. The areas of open ground where there are no raised beds, have been choked by weeds. The plan is to now pull up the weeds, cover with newspaper, and perhaps even black plastic on top of that. I have been avoiding that, thinking that raised beds are enough. At least the black plastic can be planted through, the newspaper and pulled up weeds can help the clay composition.
This is going to be one of the big battles. To be clear of as many weeds as possible, and cover the ground. With the beautiful weather that we have had, the clay is like concrete. There is now way a magic fork or spade is going to slice through it. It is just as bad, when it is winter.
As I sit here, the weather lady has just delivered her forecast. For the moment at least, the nice weather will remain. A bit of harvesting was done to today. A small amount of Florence Fennel. A crop, that I had forgotten that I sown. So was very surprised to the see the dill hovering amongst the leaves of the Astia Courgette right next to it. The Florence Fennel was sautéed with the Kestrel potatoes. Lovely looking first second earlies, with pink smudges that look like little faces.
In the wendy house, you will see the vast array of chillies and bells. We have in there a huge number. We have just to name a few, Nigels outdoor chilli, lemon drop, frauzauber, spanish mammoth red, early jalapeño, purple beauty and long red marconi to name a few. Those are the ones that were at least labelled. I think a few of them, have thrown a bit of a tantrum in the wendy, having moved from the classroom. They were perhaps not used to the different temperatures. As mentioned previously, we are having nice weather. A few of the chillies, have been a little burned, and perhaps are sulking because of that too. They are watered and fed regularly. I am still not convinced of treating them in a mean fashion. The resplendent purple rainbow chillis remain in the kitchen at home. There were seven of these altogether, only one of these is in the wendy.
Triffids rise again, on the plot. Not only are there squashes, but also sweetcorn and sunflowers. I had though that the sunburst sunflowers, were relatively small. Yet these are nearly as big as me. No quite giant, but bigger than I had expected. Very leafy, and yet to form any flowers. I do believe that the squashes may take over the universe. I have long expected and anticipated the leaves getting as big as dinner plates. In my experience, that is a good thing. That is happening, yes. Now, we are on flower and fruit watch. Already, we have had a few striato di napoli and astia already, in addition to two beautiful tennis ball sized summer ball. I have never sown a yellow courgette, so this was a lovely crop. Mama H and I are still at odds over the bush baby marrow. Resting on a brick, it is as big as it should be. Mama H wants me to wait for various dishes to have been eated, before I harvest it. If it explodes, it’s not my fault, all right.
Tomorrow is another day, and for the moment; it is summer.