Goodbye, Summer… it was nice whilst you lasted!

I know you won’t think so, but the year is over. I’m in hibernate mode. The freezer is full and the ground is mostly empty bar a few winter crops that will stay in the ground right up until the winter.

It feels like it’s been awfully rushed. You have a year to live in eight months. Sow, pick out, plant on, nurture, water, fruit, harvest, dig up, dig over. And it’s all done.

Peas first leaves
Last week of January and we have pea shoots

In January, I was madly planting out and hoping the frosts didn’t last too long. The poly tunnel was empty except a few peas and beans. More of them next year! And although the peas did okay in the polytunnel, both of them did better outside. Poly tunnel is just for seed trays next year! Plus, it will give it a year to get itself weed free. The convolvulus weeds in there are so thick it’s almost undiggable. Steve’s going to sterilise it once everything is out of there.

Mona Lisa potatoes being chitted
Chitting potatoes ready for planting - January

I’ve dug and dug and dug. Now I’ve got 5 plots plus the tunnel. When we arrived, we had only the one. I think that’s a lot more growing room! I still don’t think it will be enough though. I’d like more peas and more cabbages, more variety and more range. I’m not sure where I’ll put the next plot though! I’ve got a fenced-off vegetable garden where the chickens can’t get in so it’s fairly limited in terms of how much space there is.

Broad bean beginnings
February and the broad beans are emerging like aliens from John Hurt's belly

March was fairly warm and April got hot. By April, stuff was outside and things were beginning to come in as a harvest. Really, April is where it all started. April to September – the whole year happens in that time. All you’re doing either side of that time is clearing up or preparing.

So what have we had?

French breakfast radishes
French radishes at the end of April
Turnips in April
Cherries and Elderflowers
Cherries and Elderflowers at the beginning of May
Cornichon flower
courgettes, beans and gherkins
Courgettes, gherkins and beans in June


charentais melon
Charentais melon
Peppers in August
Pears in August
Pears in August
Roma Tomatoes
Tomatoes in August

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