How’s your garden growing?

This is just a quick update on the produce in my garden. Following on from last year’s disaster, I have already had some minor success.


After living in a pot for a couple of years whilst we relandscaped the back garden, the blackcurrant bush has grown well, survived aphid attacks and has yielded about 1 lb of blackcurrants. We are going to freeze some of them and others will no doubt end up in blackcurrant muffins (I will post a recipe at a later date if any of you are interested). The variety that we grow, for no reason other than it looked healthy when we bought it over 5 years ago from the garden centre, is Ben Sarek. I have included a picture to prove they exist (and in case we don’t get any next year).
The gooseberry has been attacked by sawfly for two years, so we are giving it one final chance this year and have relocated it to the front of the house. It has one solitary gooseberry, but, so far no sawfly devastation. Hopefully it will continue that way.

The garlic that I planted in December is having mixed fortunes. Those planted in the front garden are doing wonderfully well and have some of the thickest stems I have seen, the 3 cloves that I put in the back are looking a bit sad and weedy. I think it will be time to harvest them before long.

Courgette Flower

My courgettes are also doing OK (although the ones I gave to my mother-in-law appear to be twice the size) and the first flowers appeared on Thursday on both the one in the ground and the one in a pot. This is a big relief as they failed completely last year, being annihilated by slugs soon after planting. This variety is Partenon which I have grown before, fruits early and is self fertile so should be fine whatever the weather.

I have also planted out some pak choi and my beans as well as some either cauliflowers or cabbage that I was given (Colin couldn’t remember which was which). Radish (which are supposed to be easy to grow) have benefited from me making the effort to thin them out and I finally have some carrots coming up in containers. However, I am particularly pleased with some rainbow chard in the front garden and my chillis in the back garden which are already fruiting. (I will share the secret of my success once they have ripened.)

Garden Duties

Today I decided that I had better get on with sowing some of the seeds that I had planned to do last weekend. So in went the courgettes, two types of beans (blauhilde and hildora), some sweetcorn and cavolo nero (I have never grown this last one before so it will definitely be a case of trial and error).
Following on from my four carrot success of last year, we have put some seeds in a smaller pot this year and are trying our hands at growing them as baby veg. I have also started some salad leaves and radish off. All of these are things I want to try succession planting to try and prolong the season.
I also took the plunge and decided to pot on some tomatoes that I started off last month. I am trying coir pots this time so that I am less likely to kill them off when they get into their final pots.
Other things that seem to be growing OK at the moment are the gooseberry (lots of flower buds already, but I am checking for sawfly infestations daily after the wipeout that was last year) and the blackcurrant (it has finally been put back in the ground after being held in a pot for a couple of years whilst we relandscaped the back garden). Of more concern is the blackberry (oregon thornless) which we kept in a pot for too long due to delays in the aforementioned landscaping and which does not show many signs of life yet (but I live in hope).
I need to plant the seed potatoes soon as they are well chitted, but every time I look at the weather forecast there is some frost expected. They are going in tubs, so should be better protected, so they will be going in next weekend, whatever the weather.