Monday, July 17

Guess who likes jostaberries?

Last week there was another first in our harvest box.
Our first cauliflower from the collection of early brassicas bought from D T Brown. It's the first time we have bought plants from this company and the first time that we have grown this variety of cauliflower - Helsinki. The only downside is that it looks as though the cauliflower heads will all come at once so some will have to end up in the freezer. Lack of moisture means that the large brassica plants are flagging.
12 July
We are still harvesting cabbage although they are starting to split. The splitting so far is only affecting the top layers of leaves so there's plenty of usable cabbage.
14 July
The first row of Casablanca potatoes have now been lifted. Incredibly we haven't come across even one spoiled potato, no form of damage whatsoever.
We have sown another row of peas into the space that the potatoes have vacated.  
We have a row that we are picking at the moment, a row that is just starting to flower, one row that isn't yet at flowering stage and now this one. The aim is for a long lasting succession but this may be wishful thinking. The pods of the peas that we are harvesting at the moment are rather tatty looking but the peas inside are fine which is all that really matters.

The mangetout didn't germinate well but last week we managed a small picking.
The sweet peas are now starting to produce more flowers. I'm hoping that the pollen beetles that seem to be everywhere this year don't home in on them as they will cluster inside the keel petals and spoil their use as cut flowers. When that happens the beetles have to be in some way evicted before the flowers can be brought indoors.
The sweet pea stems are incredibly long this year. Maybe my watering regime has suited them more than in previous year when I have watered less relying more on natural irrigation.
15 July
The first of the three dahlias that we bought for the perennial border at the allotment is flowering.
It's lovely but ... which of these do you think it is?
It will be interesting to see what colours the other two plants will turn out to be.

We are managing to harvest some bits and pieces of salad ingredients including some watercress which so far hasn't made it in front of the camera but I will be giving it a post of its own shortly.
16 July
Hidden in the plastic bag on the left of the photo above is a selection of radishes as shown below. after pulling these were quickly popped into the bag to keep them fresh and crisp.
We're still picking berries. Every couple of days there is at least one large punnet of Tulameen raspberries. I'm still picking blueberries from our earliest fruiting bush and the second bush now has berries ripening. The bushes are performing well this year and producing some strong new shoots.

The Malwina strawberries are providing more delicious berries.

The berries are still a good size.
We are being kept busy picking blackcurrants ...
... and continuing the black theme, the blackberries are starting to ripen. The canes are loaded with fruit. Fortunately, as the canes are thornless picking is painless. 

We now have more them enough jostaberries in the freezer and so now the wildlife is enjoying the leftovers. The blackbird hardly bothers to fly out of the bush when we pass by.
It isn't surprising that the birds are attracted to the berries but someone surprising seems to enjoy browsing on the jostaberries that have fallen from the bush.
Just to prove this, I filmed a short video of the little one above in the act.


I am linking to harvest Monday hosted on Dave's blog Our Happy Acres

28 comments:

  1. Wonderful fruit and vegetables, beautiful flowers, and a few wildlife photos, too! Very enjoyable reading your blog
    Have a great week!

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    1. Thank you Lea - glad that you enjoyed it.

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  2. As soon as I saw the title of your post I knew that Blackbirds would be implicated, but I hadn't expected the Hedgehogs to be involved!

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    1. We were quite surprised to see the hedgehog too, Mark. Not usually about during the day and I didn't expect it to browse on berries.

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  3. Like Mark, I was expecting the culprits to be blackbirds or thrushes, but not a happy little hungry hedgehog! Delightful!

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    1. I think that the birds did the hedgehog a favour by knocking the berries off, Deborah. The hedgehog was only a young one so I was a bit concerned to see it out in the middle of the afternoon.

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  4. Those are some lovely potatoes! I have quit growing them because they don't ever seem to do that well for me. It was fun watching the hedgehog eat the berries. The groundhogs eat our mulberries when they fall from the tree, along with the deer.

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    1. It's the first time I have seen a hedgehog eating fallen berries, Dave but as they are usually about at night this is hardly surprising. Maybe they regularly enjoy a midnight feast under the fruit bushes.

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  5. super harvests and photos :)

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  6. Your strawberry is so yummy, Sue especially the dark red ones. Mine are bad, some of them in bloom others are empty. I think to throw out them and to buy another variety. My potatoes start flower and hopefully I can lift them soon.
    Happy new week!

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    1. WE had another large picking of strawberries this afternoon, Nadezda, Driving home the car was filled with aromas from ripe strawberries and sweet peas.

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  7. Wow !! Your fruit and vegetable collections look great !! Nice to eat vegetables from own garden!!
    It is really unusual to meet hedgehogs!
    Greetings

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    1. It's that bountiful time of year, Ela.

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  8. Oh how cute! I quite like four legged visitors that pick up the dropped fruit on the ground - as far as I'm concerned, they are doing us a service :)

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    1. I am happy to share the fruits of out labour, Margaret. There's been plenty for everyone this year.

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  9. That is a perfect cauliflower! Beautiful.

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    1. Was perfect and is now no more, Michelle but more where that came from.

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  10. Lovely harvest! I can't wait to see your dahlia blooming

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  11. Such a cute video clip! Are they consider pest over there?
    Perfect harvest! Enjoy cooking them Sue!

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    1. Hedgehogs are very much a gardeners friend, Malar.

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  12. What a wonderful harvest! Thank you for sharing the Hedgehog video. I missed seeing one in Denmark by a day. My only regret of the trip.

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    1. Don't you have them on your part of the world, Bonnie?

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  13. Your harvest, as always, is fantastic. What a handsome cauli! Good looking potatoes too. Our hogs enjoy berries too, and sunflower seeds and peanuts, they seem to have a pretty varied diet. I hope hoglet is well, they shouldn't be out in daylight, maybe it needs a check up as they usually have issues when out in the day. xxx

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    1. I was concerned that it was out during the day, Dina but it seemed lively. I have only seen it once but will look out for it. I understand that peanuts need crushing if they are put out for hedgehogs as they can cause jaw problems if they try eating them whole. Is that correct? We used to get quite a few in the garden browsing under bird feeders. My sister pops the dry food her dog eats out for them too.

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  14. Your cauliflower and potatoes look splendid. And it's amazing the variety of berries you manage to grow. I'm planning to start clearing out a few beds this week to get them ready for some fall planting.

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    1. We are at the stage where some beds are at the end of their productive phase, Phuong but they need digging over and the ground is still dry and hard to work with.

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