May 2010

Lots of comments on how lovely the garden is looking, thank you!

Asparagus doing great, spinach delicious, a profusion of mint, chives and marjoram. the crown prince squash and leeks have done their longest season yet here, using in the kitchen and in the shop from last autumn till may - amazing.

Just waiting for the sugar snaps to fruit, the carrots and beetroot in the tunnels to grow a tiny bit more and the summer harvests will begin..........

Kate and I are concentrating on more cut flowers this summer, they are being planted as I write, do look out for them in a month or two.

September 2010

Tunnel oriental brassicas, mixed leaves and coriander growing beautifully. Polytunnels are ugly but so useful in our climate...... Lovely swedes, parsnips, sprout tops and cabbages coming into the shop now in earnest. Uchiki kuri, the little orange squash is favoured by lots of us as you dont have to peel it, just chop it up and cook it. Kales are looking great, Nero de Toscana so dark green it must be healthy and it tastes good too, unlike other kales needs quite a bit of boiling. Laura, Mike, Lizzie and our new Wwoofer Jessie from Australia are digging and lifting carrots, celeriac, parsnips, swedes, leeks in all weathers. Mud everywhere this week.

The summer vegetables were good, lots of sweet tomatoes although the black russians didnt grow as large as normal. Ample lettuces as the dry season kept the slugs away at the right time, shiny aubergines, sweet peppers, the hottest chillis we have had so far. The summer soft fruit harvest was good. The later strawberries seemed the sweetest. Rich in the production kitchen is getting ready to make more jams and jellies from the excess fruits this winter.
The flowers looked so colourful alongside the drive. Kates time was well rewarded in customers delight at the bunches on sale, although the financial viability of such a labour intensive job is in the balance. An extra 50p a bunch might help, comments welcomed.
It was not a good year for the outside beans, but the tunnel crops of sugar snaps and climbing runners was fantastic.
Now there is sweetcorn by the armful, good size swedes, carrots sweet altho the carrot fly found a good few, lots of kales, the brussel sprouts are looking promising, cabbages hearting up.
The onions have been taken up and dried. Lots of red and white.
The leeks planted earlier in the summer have been found by the leek moth, which is unsightly but not to offer them for sale (at a reduced price) would be to waste too much food. Later leeks will probably be fine.

November 2010

The Cosmos potatoes are a good size this year, the earlies grew well too, and sold out quickly. Parsnips are just ready to harvest, and the squashes are safely inside, to the delight of the cooks and the customers, squash soup, squash risotto, squash and coconut curry bake, squash and goats cheese lasagne, stuffed squash, and so much more to do with a squash......

Keith, Kate, Laura and Mike have been joined again this season by Alex who has been in the shop this winter, Keiths son Sam, and Jamie who woofed here in 1999. A great team. Lots of wwoofers coming and going, so far from as far afield as Sweden, Germany and next week New Zealand.


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