Tag Archives: william shakespeare 2000

Mint Marauding and Mooli Pods #gdnbloggers

There used to be a herb bed on the plot, only it is now full of mint. Mint truly is a thug, the cliché is true. Unchecked, it runs riot and takes over. With the unbalanced combination of rain and sun, the plot mint has grown quite a bit. This has meant mint marauding, chopping it back to harvest leaves. As you can see, the bouquets were nearly as big as me, and three large bundles of the stuff were harvested. I guess that you can never have too much mint! Having harvested it all and carried it home, Mama F and I spent a few hours at the dining table stripping the leaves so that it could all be frozen. There are several different varieties, with some smelling like spearmint and chocolate mint in there somewhere too. It would take a proper connoisseur to smell out the different mint varieties.

At the moment, I have vague plans to make mint jelly. Usually, the plot mint ends up in chutney; Mum can rest assured, there is tonnes still left for her to use.

The second half of the day focussed on Mum’s mooli pods. She had found that the radishes that she sown had bolted; as such, there were lots of seed pods.

pods1

These are actually edible, and different varieties of radish will produce seed pods of different potencies. For example, seed pods from Japanese radish have a peppery fiery-ness. In the image above, these are pods from an unknown red variety, and these were quite sweet to the taste.  As you can imagine, I was going a little dotty anyway, having plucked away all that mint. However, as Mum had helped me, I was going to help her. All We had harvested less than half of her entire bolted radish crop, yet we managed to fill three troughs of seed pods. How I did not see seedpods in my sleep, I do not know.

Mum plans to cook up the seed pods; the recipe is in sow grow eat!

Other than mint marauding, I was loitering with therapeutic intent as well. I’ve not een to the plot in a while, so have missed the blooms blossom. Shakespeare is well and truly kicking off, and the glads have finally kicked.  I have the standard, as expected six pears on the tree-it’s always six, no idea why-with tomatoes making slow but certain progress. I’m not holding my breath with the tomatoes; there will be a significantly smaller crop than expected, and no puddles of tomatoes like last year. There are fewer plants, and I don’t think the Roma variety will keep their place on the plot. Marmande appears to be the winner as per usual.  All three of the grapevines are burgeoning; lusciously leafy, there are clusters of grapes starting to swell. With raspberries creaking to an end, I was able to harvest a handful of plump ‘darrow’ blueberries. The other two varieties haven’t so much as sneezed this year, the one plant is turning copper and going to sleep.

 

P.S. yes, I know,  need allotment proof nail varnish.

 

 

Pickles, peppers and petals

Had to do an experiment today. THE experiment, the one that was the only reason for growing gooseberries on the plot. The experiment, that is gooseberry pickle. Amlar Achar, as it is know. Now, whilst I have a bollywood ma and pops, that doesn’t mean I know anything about Indian food and preserving. Ordinarily, I grow the produce, Ma then makes it all Indian. Today, I made the produce Indian. Searched a relatively easy to follow recipe, raided her pantry. Mustard oil, onion seeds, even the asafoteda, and that stuff honks half way to hell; it is that potent.

I have never made an indian pickle. I once asked my granny-Mum’s mum- and she gave me a recipe, taught me how to do it, but this was the first time flying solo.

The whole thing was concocted. I have learned to do chutney, and practice for that is straight forward.

I walked away from the saucepan, in something of a strop. I didn’t recognise the substance, it didn’t look like a pickle to me. But I wasn’t looking at it from the Indian perspective.

Still made Dad taste a teaspoon. And Mum tasted it with her dinner.

They are both okay. The Jar is still there.

Having left the jar, and trying to get rid of the sulk; I went to water the plot. It’s a bit hot outside, so  bit necessary. Then there is the poly tunnel; the contents need regular watering. Spotted, was a bright red cayenne. I have struggled to get chillies red in the poly. This is only the second time that this has happened. There are also the tiniest of yellow courgettes, which is nice to see.

The next nice part, was the roses.

Slap bang in the middle, is a rose called Blue moon.

Yes, it’s pink.

Roses on the plot

The roses have somewhat caught me off guard, in being early. Perhaps I had forgotten that we were in June already. In 21 days, I have harvested about three bouquets of blooms, and there may still be more all being well. There a few roses bushes that don’t seem to be doing anything, but the large proportion of them are burgeoning with blooms.

I have deliberately put up a picture of the arch. I was at Gardener’s world live last week, and over heard Joe Swift talking about garden planning. He was saying that people put these features in their gardens, but then don’t even walk through them. I definitely walk through mine! The arch is the gateway from one part of the plot to the other.

In the middle is william shakespeare 2000, leading away from the falstaff apple tree, something of a theme! The second half of the plot is called project othello. Either side of the arch are two climbing roses. These are golden showers and danse de feu. One yellow and one red.

The avenue of roses-and fruit trees-was a deliberate design. This year it has paid dividends. Walking passed the blooms, I am convinced that I was smelling lovely zingy lemons. Shakespeare definitely smells of lemons!

#NaBloPoMo: Still there, still going strong

chilliesshakespeare

Ventured down to the plot today. It’s been damp and miserable all week, and with work I haven’t been able to get down to the plot. I wanted to double check the chillies, and was heartened to find that they are still there. All very bushy and green, I don’t have the heart to euthanise them. So much for entering the dorset naga challenge, I have not harvested one chilli from any of them. Seems cruel to let them continue, when there doesn’t seem to be any fruit forthcoming. They all look healthy, burgeoning with blooms. But still nothing. All very disappointing. Even now, we are half way through November. How long further will these things go? I doubt very much that I will get a chilli this Christmas! Not sure now, as to what chillies i will sow next year. Might go back to basic cayenne and see what happens.

At the centre of the plot is William Shakespeare 2000. A beautiful red rose, that when in full bloom, smells of lemons. That too is still going. In fact, I counted eleven blooming roses across the plot. Even the week before last,I had eleven roses that I harvested to fashion a bouquet from. I don’t recall roses being in bloom at this point in the year before. And there are quite a few bushes on the plot. I tinkered with the climbing roses, golden showers and i think the other one is called danse de Feu. These just needed tying in to the metal arch. Which reminded me to prune there roses on the plot. A task made somewhat easier, in having been deadheading blooms over the summer as I went along. The more established posh roses, such as christian dior, Lover’s meeting, silver jubilee, pascali, peace rose, harry wheatcroft, have grown upwards quite a bit. Less so with the width of these. The less established lost label roses are a mixed bag. Still quite small, a handful are quite tall, and still very leaf. No idea what they are, hence the name A lot pink ones, an odd orange one.Was looking at where I might squeeze in another couple of roses bushes. Given how we have Shakespeare all ready, Anne Boleyn might be one to window shop.

The autumn bliss raspberry will also need to be pruned. I’m not entirely sure what to do with those.