Thursday 26 July 2018

Is it warm enough?

bigger tamarillo

I have two tamarillo plants started from seed way back in 2016 when I bought a lot of tender novelties in the rush of a new polytunnel. They have proved hardier than most of my experiments and survived two winters at 10C kept very dry. This year, after a shaky start when they were infested by aphids they've really been enjoying the weather and my reward is the first flowers pictured above. Finger crossed they will fruit. Unfortunately I suspect they will need cross pollination and the other plant is just as large but shows no signs of flowers so it may be a forlorn hope.

black gram

In the spring Rhizowen of Radix Root crops gave me loads of lovely new seeds to try and amongst them two sorts of pulses that have really enjoyed the heatwave. Above a black gram, Vigna mungo, with lime green yellowy flowers and a fairly short habit. I grew half a dozen plants and put some under cover and some outside. Although I've been watering the ones in the tunnel and the outside ones have been experiencing drought there is little to choose between their development, and they are clearly very adapted to dry conditions. However as an experiment on the possibility of growing such pulses outside in France it has to be said that the test will need to be made again when it isn't quite so hot. 

carol deppe cowpea

I have tried growing cowpeas (Vigna unguiculata) here before but although the plants germinated and grew well they never flowered and were (I think) eventually eaten by some rogue cows that invaded the patch. This variety is the OSSI registered Fast Lady selected by Carol Deppe for cooler climates. Ha! Anyway, these are growing well indoors and out and forming pods. I was surprised by the yellow flowers but it helps to identify them as the outdoor ones are planted next to some climbing French beans with white flowers.


These two little pots of weedy seedlings represent a new interest. They are both types of chilli pepper but ones that are said to be cold hardy, or at least capable of taking a light frost. I already grow the rocoto tree chilli Capsicum pubescens which can, with care, be maintained as a short lived perennial under much the same conditions as the tamarillos above and I'm hoping that these species will also thrive and perhaps provide the basis of a breeding line. We'll see.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

It is warm enough.