Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Ghostrider - at long last! 22.10.08

Welcome back to Reads Retreat, our guide to growing your own veg in Raised Beds.

We still have no home internet, and this update comes to you from the local library access!

Regular readers will know that secret squirrel bought me some mail order plug plants way back in the spring. One of these was a Pumpkin (v. Ghostrider) which was duly planted up with the other plugs. It was given a favourable position in one of the raised beds, one that contained plenty of well rotted household waste, and a good proportion of compost. It should have done remarkably well. Initial growth was beyond expectations, as it easily sent out its stems all over the bed. Throughout the summer there has been a profusion of yellow flowerheads to greet me on the plot, but sadly that was it. Having resigned my self to failure with this vegetable, I had stopped looking. It's a shame then that this week we have discovered the making of a pumpkin. It's only small at the moment ( slightly larger than a golf ball ) and still green. I'm tempted now to wait a while before uprooting the plant. For the life of me I'm not expecting much here, but it would be nice to get a small reward for all the care and attention that has been lavished. Fellow bloggers have put me to shame here with pics of their glorious bounties! Must try harder next year !

Elsewhere on the plot, the growth is slowing up as weeds take over, light availabilty declines, and the nights get darker earlier. A brisk walk around the plot this morning revealed :
  • The runner beans have finally finished their growth for cropping. The pods left will now be saved for seed collection ( when the pods have dried out ), before the plants are cut at soil level and cleared away for the winter.
  • The Climbing French beans have mostly finished now, maybe a final harvest awaits for the table ? Any further bean pods will be left on the plant to dry out, and the seeds contained will be stored for use in winter soups and casseroles.
  • The Turnips (v. Golden Ball) had the greens removed a couple of days ago, and are already sprouting fresh leaves. They will be left in the ground a while longer, or until we get a prolonged cold snap.
  • The late sowed Kohl Rabi, well - not doing too much. I may get a few "golf ball" sized crops but that will probably be it ?
  • The late sowed Beetroot (v. Boltardy) are still doing well, and if we're lucky will provide a dozen or so more fruits for the table .
  • The chili's ( v. Cayenne ) in the hanging basket continue to thrive. Just wish I could upload a pic to show you. There must be about 30 or so in this one basket, and I must add - they taste delish.
  • Our dying courgette plant has all but given up the ghost, albeit having just produced a rather late yellow flower - might get one more here?
  • What we do have an abundance of though ( thanks to my over planting ) is loads and loads of swiss chard all around the plot. This tasty spinach like plant, should be gracing our plates right through the winter. Yum!

Thats about it for now. Please bookmark us and come back soon. We hope to be online in the very near future.


Friday, 10 October 2008

Still no computer!

Welcome back to Reads Retreat.

Apologies to Matron and all, still no pictures I'm afraid!

If anyone has a spare 120Gb Hard drive they don't need anymore - please let me know !

Will be back soon !


Monday, 6 October 2008

Chilli's Galore 06.10.08

Welcome back to Reads Retreat, our guide to growing your own veg in Raised Beds.

We still have no Internet access at home, so am continuing to use the facilities at the library! With that in mind, all updates will be in text format for a few weeks, but we hope to get things sorted soon.

I took a stroll around the plot yesterday - amid the howling wind and rain! Normally at this time of year you don't expect to see a lot of colour from the crops, but I was delighted to see plenty of bright red Chilli's in the hanging basket. I can thoroughly recommend that you grow some of these in this manner. I've lost count of how many we've harvested from this single plant, and there is still loads more to come. The variety we chose are Cayenne. They were very easy to propogate, grow very quickly and very spicy without being too hot - if you know what i mean!

Elsewhere the crops are starting to finish. The runner beans have not really produced much this year, but plenty of pods will once again be saved for next years plantings. The Climbing French Beans (v. Blue Lake) have exceeded expectations, and surprisingly are still cropping!

Thats about it for now. Watch this space for more update. Till then,


Thursday, 2 October 2008

What no internet ! 2.10.08

Welcome back to Reads Retreat.

Please bear with us as we currently do not have Home Internet access.

Many thanks to Kent County Council for providing access in the interim.

More updates to follow very soon - hopefully!