Wednesday 26 September 2012

What's left in the garden in September?

The Summer crops are winding-down now, and my focus is on things like Winter brassicas, but before we forget Summer completely, here's a Situation Report on some of the plants in my garden that are finishing rather than starting.

The Runner Beans have done amazingly well this year, and they are just putting on another spurt of energy. There are fading crimson flowers and tiny bean pods all over the place! To look at them, anyone would think it was June, not September.

Photo taken 22 September

Some of the new crop are already quite large, so I'm hoping they will mature before the frost kills them off. We haven't had any frost yet, but it did get down to 2 degrees (Celsius) one night last week.

The Beetroot are still going strong too, although the rows are considerably depleted now. Despite having been in the ground for ages, none of the roots have grown very big. This suits me fine. And it's not as if they have gone woody either - they are still really tender when cooked.

This little Cabbage ("Golden Acre") is one that I grew in a pot. It never got very big, just enough for a two-person serving, but in terms of quality it was superb.

I have a couple more of this variety growing in the soil so it will be interesting to compare them.

"Golden Acre" in one of the raised beds

The Bronze Fennel flowers have faded and given way to seeds now. They are very picturesque, but I probably won't be harvesting them since we don't use a huge amount of Fennel in our cooking and we still have plenty in store.

The Blueberries that I pruned after harvesting have put up several new stems. In fact the pruning gave the bushes a new lease of life and they have produced loads of new leaves even on the old stems. That's a shame really, since it is now time for them to fall off!

My new Strawberry plants grown from runners are looking good, and I have now severed their "umbilical cords". I have 10 Strawberry plants now instead of the four I bought earlier in the year. I just need to plan where to grow them next year!

The "Iznik" cucumber plants look very ragged and disshevelled:

I'm not cutting them down just yet though, because they are still continuing to produce fruit:

One thing we can say for sure: this week most gardens in Britain have been VERY well watered - naturally.


  1. I wish we would get some water too. Though looking at the forecast I'll be wishing for sun by the end of the weekend and won't be getting any. My cucumbers withered away ages ago. We had a really short season. I wish they had lasted as long as yours.

  2. Your runners have certainly been amazing this year Mark - you must be doing something right. My late-planted ones are just coming on nicely, hopefully will be able to begin harvesting soon. The wind and rain has battered them a bit but at least they are beginning to crop.

    1. Elaine; I can't really claim the credit. It was the weather that made the Runners do well - lots of rain at the right time. I hope your late-planted ones produce a good crop before the frosts set in. They will certainly have had plenty of moisture!

  3. Looking good for next season! I had 2 red tomatoes thus week. They were divine. The rest of the crop are still yellowy green and I'm thinking of bringing them inside. What do you think?

    1. Bring 'em in, I say. There's not likely to be much more sunshine this year, and they will ripen better indoors.

  4. Love the transitional phases in the garden, some things are finished while others keep on going... Have some golden acre cabbages myself that I am looking forward to.

  5. Your garden is still productive at this late stage. I've only just started harvesting my runner beans so I'm hoping that the frost stays away for a while longer yet so that they carry on producing. Your new strawberry plants look very healthy, you should get a much bigger crop next year.

  6. I wonder what the rest of the year will throw at us? All in all I think we have done well to harvest what we have this year.

  7. Try some of the fennel seeds while they are still juicy and green, they are quite delicious. Your runner beans are so pretty. I grew a runner bean for its large white seeds this year, Greek Gigante, but they were never as pretty as the scarlet runners and letting them go to seed means they are now turning brown and scraggly. My blueberry plants are even more confused than yours, they are blooming again, in the autumn!

  8. Looks like you've still got some harvesting to do this year! I love to see productive fall gardens.


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