Monday 1 June 2009

A dreaded sunny day


It's being summer here. It most probably is too where ever you are, unless it's not, in which case I pity you. Who wants autumn when there's sunshine to bask in?

I'm kicking myself for not getting more planted out by the middle of last week before the weather changed, the ground is baking hard already and I'm already considering taking water to the vegetable plot to help newly transplanted sweetcorn and the few beans that have germinated.

Cross about the beans too, only half a dozen of over 100 beans actually came up although the conditions seemed to be fine when I planted them. I've had to replant in pots and hope that the delay won't be too serious. Biggest loss, the Bridgwater beans; my lucky dip from the Heritage seed library. I expected them to be fine and popped all ten seeds into the ground, not one survived. The Mayflower beans nearly suffered the same fate but I held back half a dozen of those and they are now in a pot where I hope they'll give me a second chance.

Anyway, in the cool of the morning tomorrow I'm planning to set out the pickling cucumbers, the quinoa and most of the pumpkins. The surprise late germination there were the butternuts so I've decided to create them a safe haven in the back garden patch on the grass clippings pile. This has the advantage of giving them warm feet which might lead to an earlier crop (or any crop at all) and separates them from the Moschata Muscade from which I was hoping to save seed this year without having to resort to special measures.

Also started today, the elderflower champagne. I'm hoping after last year's poor show it will work as beautifully this year as it did the first year I made it, and I'm fermenting two gallons in anticipation of it.

Pictured above: the scuplit, Silene inflata, which I'm still not convinced is a valuable alternative crop, but it is pretty and it took me seven years to learn to love Good King Henry so perhaps if I wait a bit longer I'll get the taste.


fuzzlewoof said...

I've just bottled up 13 ltrs of Elderflower champers, managed to use old flip top grolsh bottles I've been saving. Can't remember how long to leave it now, think its ready in a couple of weeks.

Strange bean year this year, i've sown twice but only a few have come up so far of my climbers. But every dwarf french bean is up.

amaca said...

Nice lighting

Catofstripes said...

Blimey, that's a lot of Champagne. Planning a party?

I really don't know what went wrong with my first sowing of beans, the weather seemed warm enough. Anyway, trying again with fingers crossed.

Thanks Amaca.

fuzzlewoof said...

The Champers went so quickly last year I've doubled production. Though the friends who did not give the flip top grolsh bottles back won't be getting any this year!. Will be sampling my brew next week. I've read reports it can be kept for upto a year, though I seriously doubt any will be left after a month or 2.

Catofstripes said...


I think we have a success with champers! hooray. Fizzing up nicely, which bodes well for a celebratory weekend with my dear man in 10 days time, 12 years together!