These runner beans Aeron Purple Star
are enjoying the warm weather. I make sure they are well watered and that the flowers are sprayed regularly to help the flowers to set. In warm, dry weather runner beans need rain to help set the flowers so a regular mist or light spray can help this.
My first tiny courgette is starting to develop on the plant. I love these Black Forest Climbing courgettes
. I grow them up a trellis to save space. Always a good do-er.
In the greenhouse my Italian melon cucumbers
are beginning to climb up the trellis. They are growing several inches each day now.
These are little Sweet Potato
cuttings that I managed to take last Autumn. I kept the cuttings in a glass of water on the windowsill all Winter, then potted them up in the greenhouse. This variety Beauregard
does well in the UK climate. Now looking good and the soil has warmed up so they went out yesterday.
Now here comes the challenge! I have never been able to grow carrots successfully. I love fresh carrots, and Leo loves them too. I have very hard London Clay soil here and carrot roots need an open, light, sandy soil to put down long tap roots.
In this hard London clay the carrot roots just cannot go down. I end up with badly mis-shapen and forked carrots. I have been digging this plot for more than 30 years and despite regular additions of compost and organic matter it is still like digging through cannon balls of clay sometimes.
Digging, weeding, removing stones and the addition of some sand to loosen up the soil just means I am gardening on hard tennis ball lumps of clay covered in sand!
Even using a sieve just puts a small crust on top of the soil and these little golf balls of hard concreted clay are impossible to break. I have been watering this patch for several days to try to make it easier to work but it is just so hard still.
So I managed a small patch of reasonable seed bed. Left uncovered the neighbourhood cats would just dig it up and use it as a toilet! grrrrrr! So here is my attempt at some Autumn King carrots
. Let the battle commence!