Monday 21 July 2014

Harvest Monday - 21 July 2014

After all the setbacks I have had this year - contaminated compost, Blossom End Rot, Cabbage Root Fly etc - I am beginning to wonder if I am the subject of a jinx! However, I am trying to remain positive and to focus on the good aspects of the situation, so what do you think of this?

You can see for yourself that there is nothing wrong with my potatoes! These are a mixture of three types - "Charlotte" (700g), "Balmoral" (515g) and "Harlequin" (411g), each the yield from one pot. This year I have been trialling a number of varieties new to me, and some of them have been very nice (for example "Sharpe's Express"), but I have to say that I don't think any of them can beat "Charlotte". In the photo above the "Charlotte" ones are those at the bottom right. Aren't they clean, regular and good-looking? They also have great taste and texture when cooked.

In the photo there are also three "Iznik F1" cucumbers. I have four plants of this type, although one is still very small, having been planted a long time after the others, so I'm not going to be short of cucumbers. They are very prolific fruiters.

Behind the cucumbers you can see some "Cobra" Climbing French Beans - a batch of about 180 grams. Regular readers will know that this is my favourite variety of French Bean, one which I have grown every year for many years.

In the background are some "Purple Top Milan" Turnips, weighing-in at just over 400g. I'm planning to serve these roasted in a glaze of Sweet Freedom (as a low-GI substitute for sugar).

This week I have also harvested more lettuces. In fact, I have been harvesting lettuces pretty much every few days for weeks and weeks now, but I don't always see fit to mention it. Though I say it myself, my lettuces have been first class this year, and I have grown lots of different types. This is "Fristina", and a massive specimen it is too. That basket is 42cm in diameter.

And this is "Little Gem":

On Friday I pulled the first of my maincrop Carrots:

You may recall that I had a fair bit of trouble getting my Carrots started - I had to sow three times before I got what I felt was enough. These ones I suppose are the result of the first sowing, since there are only a very small number that are ready. I am quite proud of them, because although they are not even in terms of size (no prizes on the Show-bench then!) they are really clean and unblemished. No sign whatsoever of Carrot Root Fly damage, so the Enviromesh has done its job properly. This little batch weighed 470g.

They look even better when washed and ready for cooking:-

Next week I may be able to report the harvesting of my first Runner Beans of the year. I certainly hope so...


  1. I know there are always failures in the garden (oh how I know), but you seem to have had more than usual. At least what has been growing well for you has been growing really well. Your potatoes have been so perfect.

  2. Despite your problems, you are obviously the master of the potato. That is definitely a fine looking basket, nothing wrong there. Hope the rest of the season improves for you.

  3. Nice harvest. Despite this years adversities you are still bringing in some beautiful veggies.

  4. What a lovely display your first photo shows. My runner beans are at the same stage as yours, won't be long before we're harvesting them. I've got a second wigwam planted so I'm hoping that I may have enough to freeze for use in winter.

  5. The basketful of potatoes, beans, and turnips is lovely! And I covet those Little Gem lettuces, those are perfect.

  6. Even with your challenges in the garden, you seem to be having a lot of successes! I would love to get potatoes as beautiful as yours.

  7. I would be thrilled with your harvest Mark, so keep positive and I'm sure all will come good ;D
    I'm slightly smug visiting you today because I too have picked a wee own tatties (whoohoo) I've courgettes and strawberries but they're for another day.
    Don't want to rush and over do things.
    There could be a veg plot here by next year... who knows?
    Thanks for all your inspiration

  8. Mark superb produce as usual and presented immaculately now is there anything that you are NOT good at?

  9. Very nice harvest, I'm still waiting for my cucs to develop.

  10. Impressive that you are still getting lettuce and very nice greens at that. Next year I plan on putting all the lettuce in self-watering containers and try to extend the season. As usual, fantastic potatoes.

  11. Glad to see you are having some nice harvests to counter balance the things that didn't go as planned. Those are some perfect looking potatoes and carrots too!

  12. Those harvests are pretty wonderful, especially considering all the issues you have had. I sowed my carrots later than I should have and am anxiously waiting for them to size up - yours look marvelous.


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