Sowing for winter

I’ve just sown Florence fennel, half a dozen varieties of lettuce and two plants new to me – Kailan, a kind of Chinese sprouting broccoli and Celtuse, an heirloom lettuce whose stems, when it bolts, are edible.

Lettuce seeds before pricking out
Lettuce seedlings sown tightly together before being pricked out

I’ve also sown some Palla Rossa chicory and some frizzy endive, called Wallone.

They pair up well with the lettuce to provide colourful leaves for winter salads.

The mizuna I was given has flowered as has the rocket – it’s too hot for them and they should be sown earlier or later in the cooler months so they don’t bolt, flower and run to seed – so I’m growing some more in modules to plant out at the end of August.

Some more dwarf green beans are on the go, again in modules, for a late crop which will probably need fleecing in October.

The carrots I sowed in spring have done well – no sign of carrot fly.

Carrot thinings with some of my glorious sweet peas from saved seed – best year ever for them

They’re cheek by jowl with my Chicken Thigh Shallots (cuisse de poulet is the variety I grew from seed) which so far show no signs of white onion rot!! Fingers crossed that continues.

I also interplanted my red cabbage with carrots and the white kale has a line of beetroot between the rows.

Alex and I weeded them today.

We also built a structure for the Crown Prince squash on the compost heap!

That was fun.

We filled up a “new” compost bin I scrounged for free off a village Facebook page.

There were two but I gave the other to Alex as she said she needed one.

Tomorrow Mum’s gardener, Sarah is coming.

I was going to ask her to help me plant my new Myoga plant but I think I will pot it on first and wait until it gets a bit bigger and tougher before finding it’s forever home!

By the way I picked some kale for supper as we had the covers back while we were weeding.

I’m not sure what I’ll make with it yet.

But a white cannelini bean and white kale stew/soup is crying out to be made.

And finally today I saw a tiny iridescent turquoise beetle while I was pruning back the silver birch.

We also see greater spotted and green woodpeckers, the swallows have fledged and are fattening themselves up for their epic journey back to South Africa and Jonathan who mows the lawns and cuts the hedges took this photograph of a White Admiral in our garden!




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