The Garden pauses on the threshold of winter. Cold mornings are damp underfoot with heavy dew. Clear days are intense in their brightness and offer a welcome window to work comfortably in warm sun on vegetable beds in transition. Days that are over-cast provide balance and the promise of sustained renewing rain….. And so, another cusp in the gardening calendar is entered. Life moves on. The garden reminds and instructs……
The vegetables that will take us through the winter are slowly getting into place. Spinach continues to be wonderfully persistent and is being replaced where necessary by our own seedlings. Last season’s somnolent leeks now appear resurgent, in time for Matilda’s soup-making. Fresh seedlings are being introduced, bedded into our own compost and in patient expectation that their frail form will survive winter conditions and grow to leek maturity along with their spring onion cousins. Cabbages can now be safely planted from our seedling nursery. Every few weeks, carrots are sown directly into beds to maintain a constant supply to the kitchen. They have been our best crop for the past year. We are not sure what we are getting right, but we think it might be our compost seed-bed preparation, and skilled skoffeling. Broad beans have already made an impressive appearance above ground, and more are yet to plant. Beetroot has failed, or we it, for the past season. We will try again, this time within the nursery, where it will join our mixed lettuce beds, which sustain the kitchen’s salad menu throughout the year. What remains to harvest within the next few weeks are sweet potatoes, and their runners which we will maintain for future use. There remain a couple of beds of ordinary potatoes to harvest which may yet surprise with their bounty. And a few bringals still hang in their dark luscious form. The final mark of autumn is olive harvesting. This is now complete and the black olives occupy salted onion-bags under the kitchen-sink.
In the wider garden there remain signs of late autum. The tecomaria is shedding, confetti-like, its last blossoms. It has been most prolific on the lane behind the Guest House with yellow profusion. Elsewhere, the deep red variety continues its last exclamations wherever it has established. Ground-cover is re-invigorated everywhere, with plectranthus and vygies most impressive. The front SI garden is slowly reviving after the necessary removal of trees that had outgrown their space. Some fresh planting of shrubs is planned for this area. Also the large (and unpruned to date) olives in this garden-space will receive proper attention and be better fitted next year to fruit and be harvested. The catch-up on pruning throughout the gardens surrounding the buildings will progress, as will the clean-up on the acacias infested with mealy-bug. We have placed our faith, so far, on industrial washing-up liquid spray. For effectiveness, see the next Notes….


2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Myke Scott said,

    I’m a first time viewer of your blog. What a great idea! I look forward to swopping gardening ideas, recipes and pictures. Am looking forward to your next entry.

  2. 2

    grace said,

    this is very lovely & inspiring ….you do good work …

Comment RSS · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: