Autumn is the new summer, to borrow and misquote a piece of fashion nonsense. Days like today and yesterday are my kind of weather: the sun is shining but it's warm, not hot, I've got washing drying in a warm breeze outside and there's a gentle buzzing of bees in the shrubbery and gardens. It's left me hopeful for an extension to summer, a boon after the chilly and wet end to August.
Having recently said that the veg patch was all leaf but little produce, I may have to eat my words - as well as lots of fresh garden veg. It seems that the watering issue was at fault. A few days of torrential rain, some cooler weather and suddenly we have the right conditions for growing happy veg. I brought home an armful of beans, courgettes, tomatoes and raspberries last night (just before it got dark at 7.30, a sure sign of the changing seasons). A stroll round the garden at lunchtime today showed what I missed.
3 huge courgettes, 3 small finger courgettes, more beans, sungold and yellow pear tomatoes, a few more raspberries and lovely fresh leaves (spinach, rocket, chard and beetroot) and radishes for salad. Which reminds me, I'd better sow some more lettuce as only two of the Marvel of 4 Seasons has grown. I'm leaving those two to get a bit bigger before I start picking.
The seedpods of orach aka mountain spinach (Atriplex rubra) have turned golden with only one plant left with the lovely bright pink discs lighting up the veg patch. Spiders and their webs are everywhere, caution is needed when picking salad leaves so as not to disturb them.
|The green apples were growing on the other side of the Heath path and are sweet apples of some sort.|
That delight will have to wait until the end of next week as I'm driving up to Leeds this coming weekend, popping my son up to university where he'll be studying music production. Before I hear the cry of #emptynester, although it will initially feel strange (on my own after nearly two decades) and I'll miss him (obviously), I'll be making the most of any free time to visit more gardens, knowing that he'll be having a great time. I've heard that Leeds is Party Central for students so I'm sure my boy won't be missing home too much! (Although, possibly the washing, ironing and cooking services provided at home … )