Spring in the Garden: October

This spring has been totally delightful so far. Cool, mild and raining non-stop. Nothing like last spring. The garden is so happy and I’ve just been sitting back and watching it grow.

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Ready To Harvest

Asparagus is the hero of the garden at the moment. I have also quite a bit of silverbeet. But what on earth to use it for, aside from spanikopita? I really need to be more prepared and maybe think a bit more about what I actually use before I plant things…

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And there are quite a few artichokes ready to pick. I think my very next task is to lookup how to prepare and cook them. I have a recipe in mind which involves roasting them in coals with a mint sauce.

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I’ve got a few other things to eat, but not much! Sigh. I’ve just been sitting back and enjoying watching the rain out the window, but it’s sort of de-motivating factor for getting out into the garden to do work.

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Soon to Harvest

I thought we would have broad beans already, but they’re just at baby size still. The foliage has those black spots, a disease or fungus of some kind I think?  This seems to happen every year after rain, and it’s been raining all the time. Which is great, particularly with so many young fruit trees in the garden, so I’m not complaining. It doesn’t seem to affect production too much.

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Spring planted peas. I’ve always planted them in autumn but I did a bit of a half-baked job last autumn, and I had this long stretch of new garden bed free so I thought I’d try spring plantings. I’m really missing going outside and munching on sweet peas with my little one, so fingers crossed these produce.

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I was worried about my garlic initially, but it’s looking really good. I think this has been a slower season but a kinder one for garlic. No unseasonably hot spring weather (fingers crossed) yet.

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New Growth

There is a lot of new growth or about to spring forth on all my fruit trees. Below is a pic of a dwarf angelina plum just planted in August:

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And the jostaberries are very happy. They looked very sad in this position by the end of last summer, where they get the full force of the afternoon sun. I think I might move them next winter.

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My citrus trees are lagging behind the deciduous trees in leaf growth but they are all looking promising, in their second spring. Below is a Tahitian lime, which has not looked bothered by the winter at all (although its soil has been protected by underplantings).

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Flowering Things…

A lot of my espaliered apples are flowering. The apple below is a Huonville Crab. An Australian (Tasmanian) variety thought to be a cross between an apple and a crab apple. This is an edible crab apple. I don’t know if I’ll get fruit in only its second year despite the flowers, but I love the deep pink blossom and the purpley-red foliage.

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My smaller apples, stepovers (on M27 or M109 rootstock) are flowering and I am hoping I will get some fruit this year from these:

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One of my two newly planted quinces. The flowers are gorgeous and the leaves are lovely. I think I’m going to love these trees. This is Powell’s Prize – hopefully early maturing fruit. The other is an Angers – with later maturing fruit.

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I have two jostaberries that are are flowering in their second year. I’m hoping for a few fruit to taste test. I suppose I better get the bird net ready.

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And an alpine strawberry.  I don’t want to talk about my old strawberry patch. Eeek. But I’ve been buying a couple of these and planting them around my stepover apples. I’m about to tear my hair out because the blackbirds keep digging the baby plants up. But this one has survived and I’m a little excited. The fruit are supposed to taste delicious, albeit quite teeny tiny.

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This is an echium that I plant last spring, about to flower. It’s called Heronswood Blue from the Diggers Club. I love blue in the garden. These are looking mauve so far, so interested to see how they turn out.

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So I think if I’m to have any more posts I better do more than sit back and watch. But it is lovely.

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