On the windowsill, September 2021

These are the last of the pot marigold Oopsy Daisy flowers as there are no more buds showing and the leaves are now steadily dying back further down.

As I mentioned last month I’ve been looking for a different variety to try next next year and have now found a proper dwarf variety which only grows to 6 in/15 cm.  Details about these next month.

I haven’t sown any Winter Sun, which I also mentioned last month, as I haven’t been able to find where I put the seeds despite looking a few times.

The cosmos Sonata White continue to flower, and there’s still a few more buds showing.

I only realised recently that these are fragrant, which given my poor sense of smell I was surprised to scent.

 

 

Further to my post This year the sunflowers…  the sunflower Musicbox lasted over two weeks, and I’m going to see if I can save any of the seeds.

I was pleased to see a further three flower buds appear, two of which I’ve since pinched out in the hope that the remaining one will flower.

Take care, and have a good weekend!

Sunny Sunday smiles

I didn’t go to the plot on Friday or yesterday as both days started off very dull and overcast but I did this morning as it was sunny.

Given the problems, non-germination or being eaten by slugs and snails, I’d had with the climbing French beans this year I’m really pleased that I finally picked these first few today with more to come. They’re the variety Algarve, a flat-podded type.

The cosmos are still flowering profusely, like these rosy pink and red ones.

I haven’t seen many butterflies on the plot this year so I was especially pleased to see, and photograph, this Red Admiral on one of the two self-sown tall sunflowers.

Whilst chatting to the robin I picked some blackberries along with a few raspberries as well as a sweet corn cob, and lifted a few carrots.  I’ll certainly enjoy eating these later along with some Charlotte potatoes and an onion.

Take care, and have  a good week!

Tree following, September 2021

Brief reports on both trees this month.

Liz – In my garden here in Lexington, Kentucky the Seven Son tree is finally beginning to bloom with clusters of flowers at the ends of the branches, which are attracting lots of bees.

Mike – It’s apparent even from a distance that the leaves on the Hornbeam in the local park are starting to go yellow.  Close up that’s confirmed, and I’d guess that’s more due to a lack of water rather than the time of year.

Our thanks to Pat, The Squirrelbasket, for   hosting tree following, and if you want to see what it’s all about, and perhaps join in, please have a look at this tree following post.

Take care, and have a good weekend!

Last year I had…

picked and eaten all the sweet corn cobs I’d grown by the end of August.  This year I picked and ate the first one on Friday.  It was okay but could probably have done with being a touch yellower.

The forecast is for sunny and warm weather next week, reaching the high 20’s C/low 80’s F for a couple of days,  which should help ripen the rest.

These are the variety Incredible which I’ve not grown before, and this year sowed the seeds direct rather starting them off in pots then planting out.

The crocosmia has been providing plenty of bright colour down at the south-west corner of the plot with the green sword-like leaves contrasting with the bright  orange-red flowers.

Up at the opposite, north-east, corner the sedums are now flowering with the heads starting to go pink as we head into early autumn.

 

Take care, and have a good week!

During this week…

I was wondering if the carrots in the ground were anywhere near as impressive as the foliage looks.  This morning I dug up a couple to see if they were and was delighted to find that these certainly are.

 

The finger-thick one is the variety Bambino and the other a Chantenay Red Cored. Both are about 5 in/ 12.5 cm long.  If a few more look and taste as good as these I’ll be well pleased.

A nasturtium has self-seeded and grown in front of the compost heap and has the largest leaves I’ve ever seen on any of these plants.  The biggest leaf is around 8 in/20 cm across.  It didn’t show any sign of flowering until this week when a couple of yellow flowers appeared.

Out on the plot this mound of nasturtiums Tip Top Mahogany  showed no sign of any flowers until this week when one appeared with more on the way.

I really this dark velvet red colour with a glowing yellow centre.

 

 

Take care, and have a good weekend!

I was plotting…

every morning last week for the first time in ages as it stayed dry, although mostly dull.  I lifted some main crop potatoes Desiree each day.  Any damaged and smaller ones will get eaten as and when but the larger ones, like these, will be stored for use over the winter.

 

 

I was delighted to have the robin keep me company throughout the week, and  who was finding plenty to eat in the  ground I’d just forked over.

At last I managed to get a few photos, and  it now has it’s red breast fully showing.

 

When I was taking a good look at the flowers yesterday morning  this pair of pot marigolds caught my eye.

The horticultural society annual show is being held next Saturday but I won’t be attending.  The main reason is that I still wear a mask and social distance where necessary but there will be some members present who won’t be doing either, as according to them it’s no longer necessary.  Needless to say I don’t agree and I’m not prepared to take any risks.  That’s also why I haven’t been going to the trading shed on Sunday mornings.

Take care, and have a good week!

This year the sunflowers…

haven’t been as good as I had hoped due mostly to numerous slugs and snails taking their toll.

Thankfully the ones that did survive and flower have been buzzing with bees most days.

 

 

Still to come are two self-sown ones which are by far the tallest ones this year.  One is over 7 ft/2 mt  and is multi-headed with around twenty flower stems and buds for much of the way down the main stem.

The other one is over 8 ft/2.5 mt with just one bud at the top of the stem, and I

 

wonder how big this flower will be.  This sunflower has grown nestling against the side of the dogwood.

Following on from last Thursday’s On the windowsill post the 12 in/30 cm tall sunflower in a 5 in pot flowered at the weekend.

I have been really delighted with this plant and especially the flower.

Take care, and have a good weekend!

Flowers feed the soul

A few days ago online friend Deborah, who has an allotment in Devon,  made this comment…

I decided earlier this summer to grow more flowers and fewer vegetables. One can always buy a carrot to feed the body but these homegrown flowers feed the soul.

 

Not only did I agree with that sentiment but it made me smile as it reminded me of George, an elderly Italian who was a plot neighbour some years ago, who once told me that flowers are good for the soul and he’d much rather grow them than anything else.

The flowers shown here are some of the ones on the plot which fed my soul during last week.

The sunflower is the aptly named variety Ring of Fire and the cosmos with white streaks on the petals caught my eye.  As I’ve mentioned before light centred pot marigolds are uncommon so I was pleased to see this zingy orange one. The rose Pretty Lady has been blooming profusely again for the past few weeks.

Take care and have a good week!

On the windowsill, August 2021

The three cosmos Sonata White have now been flowering continuously for over three months and there has been as many as ten flowers at one time.

The larger flowers are over 2″/ 5 cm across and on long stems whilst the small ones, less than 1″/2.5 cm, have  mostly nestled on the top of the foliage.

 

The pot marigold Oopsy Daisy has grown much too tall and is now approaching 24″/60 cm. Since the initial three flowers there have only been two more despite dead-heading and pinching out.

Next year I think that I’ll try a different variety,  perhaps Candyman Orange, to see if I get a shorter, compact plant with more flowers.

Yesterday I received some pot marigold Winter Sun seeds some of which I’ll be sowing this month in a container on the plot to flower from late autumn onwards. I’ll also be sowing one or two in small pots to keep at home on the windowsill to hopefully give some colour when we head into winter.

The sunflower Music Box is now almost 12″/ 30 cm tall and the single flower bud is getting bigger.

Even if the flower doesn’t come to much this has been a compact, pleasing plant .

 

Unfortunately a couple of weeks ago I dropped the tomato plant and broke the stem in a couple of places. It had grown much too tall and there wasn’t any fruit forming so I wasn’t too dismayed.  I won’t bother trying again next year and will grow more flowers instead.

Take care, and have a good weekend!

I’ve started picking,…

eating and giving away the first cucumbers Crystal Lemon.  

The smaller one here was about golf ball size and ideal to peel then slice for a few sandwiches.

 

I took this cosmos photo last Wednesday then put it on Twitter, where much to my surprise it has since been liked over 600 times which is far and away the largest number I’ve ever had.   Among the flowers was this red one which I rather like.

One morning during the week a couple of young robins briefly appeared on the plot, and I’ve seen the one which has it’s red breast just starting to show several times since then.

I also stood for a while and watched this big bumble bee buzzing round the flowers.

Last week was National Allotment Week and Alice at Walton’s emailed to ask if it was okay to include me in their blog post Amazing allotmenteers you have to follow !  Needless to say I was delighted to have been asked.

Take care, and have a good week!