Saturday 23 May 2015

Photo update

Right now the garden is progressing rapidly, and I have taken lots of photos, so I thought it would be a good idea to publish some of them, providing effectively an update of progress...

The Broad Beans are looking fine. Lots of flowers, which are just beginning to fade, so hopefully there will be lots of lovely pods to follow.

The Broad Bean bed

The Broad Beans have masses of flowers on them!

The bees have been enjoying those flowers

I have planted out two cucumber plants in a big container, protected by a big cloche.

"Mini Munch" is so far a lot stronger than "Diva", but it's early days still.

Some French Beans have joined the Runners in my new raised bed. These ones are "Kew Blue". I have protected them with some pieces of stiff wire, to try to deter the Blackbirds from digging them up.

The Blackbirds seem to have a particular fondness for the corners of the beds. They dig out the compost in their efforts to find edible bugs.

It won't be long before we are eating Lettuce!

Next to the Lettuce is my patch of Cutting Salad, comprising mainly Pak Choi, Mizuna, Rocket and Cress.

The Radishes have been OK, though maybe so far not as good as last year, which was an exceptionally good year for them.

Perhaps they have put a bit too much energy into their leaves? The large amount of home-made compost I dug into that bed a few months back may possibly have provided too much nitrogen (which promotes leaf-formation).

This is the bed containing brassicas and Parsley. I had been going to remove the Parsley prior to planting the brassicas, but I'm glad I didn't. It is currently very luxuriant and producing masses of leaves.

This is a closer view of some of the brassicas. The bigger ones are Brussels Sprouts and the smaller ones are "De Ciccio" broccoli.

You will notice that almost everything in my vegetable garden is netted. Without nets the crops would suffer a lot, possibly to the extent of being non-viable. I'm talking about damage from root flies, butterflies, birds, foxes, cats - the lot!

This is my Woodblocx raised bed, with two rows of Parsnips at the left, 6 Kohlrabi and 4 Celeriac at the left, and space in the middle destined to host some Leeks. One of the rows of Parsnips looks a bit sparsely-populated, but in between the visible plants are more little seedlings coming on, from a second sowing. By a happy accident therefore I should get Parsnips to eat over a longer period of time.

These are my containers of Strawberries. Not yet netted, but they soon will be!

I'll never get a big crop from that small number of plants, but there are few things nicer than home-grown Strawberries eaten straight off the plant, so even a few will be very welcome.

Next year's PSB plants are already on the go. Still very small of course, but going according to plan.

So, you can see that it I have been busy in the garden. That's about it for now - more "status reports" will follow soon, I'm sure.

Here in the UK it's a Bank Holiday on Monday, which means most people get a 3-day weekend. It will probably be the busiest weekend of the year for gardeners and Garden Centres alike. Have a nice time, Folks, and make the most of it!


  1. It is all looking good and lush, my young plants are doing well and I have just sown a second batch of Autumn Calabrese. I will keep my fingers crossed that it does not catch up the first lot. My PSB is getting on well, I love it.

  2. Monday is a holiday for us too. My parsnips haven't germinated yet. I'll have to start checking under their cover soon as the turnips I planted at the same time have come up. I never check before the turnips germinate as the parsnips always take longer. I'm hoping they do better this year. Last year was my first year for parsnips and they grew but not all that well. Hopefully I've corrected my mistakes this year.

  3. There is really no better strawberry than the one eaten in the garden plucked straight from the plant. That's an interesting bee, is a type of bumble bee? Your garden looks wonderful now, so green and lush.

    1. I not good and bee-identification! I call all the fluffy ones "Bumble Bees", but I know they are not.

  4. Everything looks to be coming along well. Your broad beans are looking really good, I think you're going to get a great crop this year. I really must remember to sow some PSB this weekend. We visited a couple of garden centres today and they were doing a roaring trade.

  5. You'd laugh at our broad beans but at least now they are starting to grow and have flowers,

  6. I've been checking my broad beans daily looking for a pod forming, it's all very exciting. I'd love to be able to squeeze in some parsnips but I just haven't the space. Your garden is looking good, I'm envious of your neat netting cages, mine really is higgledy piggledy but it does the job.

  7. Your garden is certainly coming along beautifully. My broad beans are nowhere near as far along as yours - you made a comment before about how they often grow at different rates - I see what you mean now. Some of mine are a few inches tall, while others are just barely out of the soil.

  8. Hi
    I really like the covers you use on your veg, they look very neat but practical too.
    Did you make them? Or can they be bought at garden centres?

    1. Which covers do you mean, Nat? I use bits and pieces of many different types. Generally though, I buy them via the internet, where you can get them a lot cheaper and more reliably than in Garden Centres, which often have limited stocks.

  9. All of them really, but I was particularly admiring the ones over the sprouts and the one over the strawberries that has fittings that remind me of a Wendy house :)

    1. Hi again, Nat; The netting over the Sprouts is made from Build-a-Ball and aluminium rods (from Gardening Naturally), and the frame over the Strawberries (soon to be covered in netting too) is made from pieces of old plastic greenhouses. I seldom discard anything that might prove useful!

  10. Thanks Mark, I'll take a look at Gardening Naturally, it's certainly worth doing, as in the past I've planted enthusiastically at the start of the season then neglected the plants for a couple of weeks only to find they've all been chewed to pieces! I'd also like the idea of covering and not using pesticides.
    Thanks for your help :)

  11. Looking good Mark, I wish this weekend was a bank holiday too :D


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