Wednesday August 18th
Had to go to the allotment today as I'd realised I'd not been up to pick the runners and I expected them to be huge and inedible. Wasn't too far wrong, so now have a pile of shelled beans to pop in a stir fry. They do taste like broad beans to me - slightly bitter, but at least not wasted. Intended to start with the blackberries, and I'd taken up two one-litre lock and locks so the juice didn't escape. Just as well - they were so very squashy! Not surprising given the amount of rain we've had recently. Could have done with that a month ago - but at least I don't have to go up to water every other night. Noticed purple tufts out of the minipops - eek! They had no visible tufts a week ago. Picked the whole crop, two per plant so not too many, assuming they were all edible and not too big. The ovations don't seem to be suffering from the cross pollination (I hope!). They are growing very nicely indeed but don't think they're ready. If last year is anything to go by, they won't be ready until... checks… tomorrow! Ok plus two weeks to allow for how much we're behind this year. Dug a load of spuds. The mimi are all tiddly and nearly all hollow. Pity. The few I'd eaten before were very nice, but they do seem very slug prone. One accent was still buried. This has a very rough surface, not the circular scabs seen on the jerseys. Dug a couple of those up - now very decent sized tubers. Dug a ratte (I'd forgotten about those!) and a Pink fir apple. Both are probably not quite ready but look nice. Ratte is the same knobbly shape as pink fir but white. The largest tuber had been excavated but largely seem to be slug-free, as are the pink firs. Then found the Red Duke of York. Wow - what a colour! Beautiful deep rose pink as against the muddy reds you get in the supermarkets. Will leave the Sárpo maincrops for a while. Not even sure when one is supposed to dig them up! Washed them all roughly in the water butt lid, so the soil stays where it ought to be, then pulled a load of massive beetroot. They have definitely done well in the rain! Carrots doing nicely but are still finger sized. Thinned them out a bit, likewise the clump of romaine lettuces which are now going vertical. Cabbages still scrappy so I think they're a write-off, sadly. But the marrows are finally getting going! Have one of decent size on on the largest bush, and smaller ones on two of the others. Tempted to pick, but decided to leave as in a few days I may have some edible runners to go with them properly :) The butternut squash has also shot up in size, so I hope it will start producing squashes soon, as it wanders through the sweetcorn. Staggered back to the car with pounds of produce - better late than never!