What's Growing On?

You may have read from my yesterday post that I have been on a little bit of a gardening mission recently. I find this is a really inefficient way to go about things. Seriously, if you can get a small amount done each day, even if it's just five minutes of weeding or putting empty pots away, it will be so much easier than leaving it all until one spare Saturday where you spend your entire day getting hot and sweaty in the garden. Not that I don't love gardening of course...I really enjoy it. I guess I'm just a little bit mad at myself because I haven't put as much effort into the garden this year as I did last year. This year we have a dog to think about. He needs a long walk every day etc which takes up time. I have more responsibilities at work this year and also...you know...I'm planning a wedding and stuff which takes up A LOT of time considering its almost a year away. Well actually it is a little bit closer than that... 272 days to be exact. Oh dear...that's a bit closer than I realised.

However there are definitely some things that have been a success in the garden this year and here's a round-up of What's Growing On...

 My onions are probably like the only thing that I'm really proud of this year. I love onions and put them with every thing. I like to make chutney too! So this year I planted two types of onions, red and ...white? brown? I don't know what you call them. Onions that aren't red. The brown/white ones definitely did much better than the red ones. Not sure why. but they definitely swelled up a lot more. I have now lifted them out of the soil to dry on top for a few days before I bring them inside for storage.

I gave the raspberry canes a heavy prune last winter (with the help of FMIL) and it has made such a difference! I am very close to being rolling in raspberries! There are many ready for picking but loads more to come! I'm hoping to make some yummy raspberry jam...although I know this is notoriously hard to make because raspberries are low in pectin. Lemons needed.

 I have three varieties of apple in the garden at the moment. I have some large cooking ones, some russets and a third variety that I'm not really sure what they are...but maybe FMIL can tell me if she remembers. The russets are absolutely gorgeous for eating. Last year I had so many cookers I just didn't know what to do with them. I made such many apple based things including apple butter, apple chutney, apple sauce, apple cake. I'll have to do even more this year! I'm dreading when the time of year comes for the apples to start dropping off the trees because last year Bosun kept stealing them and eating them. One apple is fine, but after 7...his digestive system just can't handle it!
I also have a few juicy pears coming through. Not as many as last year mind you...and I don't know what variety these are either.

 This display of geraniums I have in the hedge row just get bigger and better. I really love them and they just add such a punch of colour to the garden. I might look into getting some more for next year because they're relatively easy to look after and come in lots of different colours.

 I really love my little herb corner. I have them in lots of pots around a sunny corner of my cottage and I find it really soothing just to potter about in this little corner. This year I added oregano, that's what these pretty little flowers are. It grows like a good'un though so I do have to constantly trim it back. But that's no bother, it just means that lots of people are getting dried herbs for christmas! I love bringing rosemary indoors to dry out as it leaves the most beautiful aroma as it's drying. I also have parsley, thyme and sage...but they're not looking too photogenic at the moment due to a recent prune!

Ahhhh lavender...lavender lavender lavender. I am quite literally addicted to this stuff. I find it really difficult not to buy more when I go into the garden centre. I usually come out with at least three plants. Then I have to buy nice pots to put them in...I have a problem. There were a few plants recently that weren't doing so well in their little pots so I transferred them into one of my vegetable beds that I wasn't using. Don't tell FMIL though because she will probably tell me off for using up valuable vegetable growing space...but I don't care! I love lavender and I want more I tell you more!! I love those images of lavender farms where you see rows and rows neatly trimmed lavender all in gorgeous blooms swarming in insect life. Maybe that's what I'll do...become a lavender farmer. I like making stuff with the dried lavender such as this project you can read about here.

So over all I was not happy with how my garlic went this year! I planted about 30 cloves and they all died!! Last year I planted them in pots and they did fantastically well, lasting me well into winter. This year I planted them in the ground and not a single one survived. Back in the pots next year I think!

I have this MAHOOSIVE patch of mint round the side of the cottage. It is truly magnificent. I know mint spreads so doesn't really take much to create a big patch. But I'm proud of it anyway! Mint is good in jellies, sauces, smoothies, face masks and lots of things!

The blackcurrants haven't provided so much of a yield as they did last year either. It's possible that the first heavy prune they'd had in years last winter may have shocked them a little bit. Maybe next year!

What's growing on in your part of the world?

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