The super long day length and warm days at the moment is bringing everything on in leaps and bounds. I overwintered some Swiss Chard, and let it grow up to flower for the bees...
These plants are about 8 or 9 feet tall and about to flower! Always well worth leaving some of your veggies to go to flower for the bees. I have seen they particularly like Parsnips, Leeks and Broccoli.
Meanwhile I'm trying to grow Oca
for the first time this year. A small tuber like a Jerusalem Artichoke. I am growing some tubers in a black plastic dustbin. Nice and warm soil in there, I just keep it well fed and watered.
Meanwhile my Aeron Vale Purple Star runner beans are running! Some have been cut off by the snails and slugs, but most plants are vigorous and healthy. This is a purple Runner Bean bred specially by Gwilym at Aeron Vale Allotments
. I am looking forward to seeing these, my heavy, wet London clay should suit them well.
Despite being chewed to smithereens by the sawfly, there are still some decent Invicta Gooseberries
ripening on the bushes. I leave them to ripen properly and they are the sweetest, gourmet treat ever. Pick them early and you might as well strip walpaper with them!
I am particularly excited to see how these cucumbers develop. Two varieties from Seeds of Italy
, they are both 'melon cucumbers'
one from Arbruzzo and the other from Manduria. So far, the red spider mites appear to have been kept at bay with my natural predators.
Broad beans are just perfect and ready to eat at the moment. I never have problems with Aquadulce Claudia
, a great variety.
I planted my outdoor tomatoes today. Varieties this year include, Indigo Rose, Harlequin, Chocolate Cherry, Sungold, Golden Jubilee and Pantano. The latter, Pantano is a Roman Beefsteak variety from Seeds of Italy
. Full steam ahead!