Wednesday 28 September 2022

I'm on Mother's Worrying Duty right now !

After a chilly night , we are having quite a nice day , sunshine and showers .
 I am busy worrying as mothers do , about my daughter , son-in-law and his ma and pa who are right now out in Florida waiting for Hurricane Ian to pass through . 🙏🏻
We have been watching the live news channel . It is fast becoming a category 5  !
My daughter is saying they will be fine and not to worry ..... I wish I could flick off the worry switch !

So I tried to take my mind off it and went up to the greenhouse ....there are more and more lovely bean flowers .

You may remember I dug up a couple of the now fading Courgette plants from the garden , potted them up in the spent compost from the tomato plants and brought them under cover on the bench in the shed . Well I didn't expect much from them . The leaves are getting the mosaic mould thing that they always get, which doesn't affect the fruit .

Things are looking quite good . 

Lettuces ,Pak-choi, Spinach , Coriander and Dill for salads coming along nicely .

I did some more clearing of the African Key-Hole Bed .

I had a bumper harvest of Butternuts from here this year . 
I noticed Bindweed and spent a good while pulling out it's never ending long white root strings .
 They had particularly  taken hold under the steps .

One by one , I lifted the paving slabs and pulled out as much as I could .

If only they were edible !
 I could make Spaghetti Bolognese . ( please don't do that ! )

I found a couple of these amazing caterpillars . It is the Convolvulus Hawk Moth Caterpillar  .
Yep , It eats Bindweed ! 

I moved them to another part of the garden . I think this is the time they will be turning into their chrysalis over the Winter . 

                         Small Red Damselfly 

Another little beauty flew down beside me to bask in the sun on the stone steps .

So that's all I can manage for today . Exhausted !

So I'm going in now for a nice cuppatea . 

....and get back to worrying again !   

 Please stay safe everyone .There will be lots of help on the way after it clears . I'm thinking of you .

Tuesday 27 September 2022

Growing Dwarf French Beans over Autumn under cover - update

 Walking past the greenhouse this morning I spied a tiny purple bean flower through the window !

I went in to investigate and yes , there are lots of buds . I hope they can make it before the serious  Winter weather arrives . 

It is definitely turning cooler here now and the day light hours are getting shorter .

This is only a little experiment . I wouldn't want to buy in more compost or put them into larger pots in my little greenhouse and , by the way , I used the spent compost from my tomato plants . I am thinking that this would really work best if I had a polytunnel and planted lots of them into the ground . Then I could get a more respectable and worthwhile harvest . 

Anyway you never know , we might get a few .

Started bringing in hanging baskets and pelargoniums . This one from my kitchen window . I planted it up with succulents and a couple of pelargoniums . So they can just continue to grow through the Winter and I'll put it out again next Spring . 

Sunday 25 September 2022

Over-wintering Musa Ensete maurelii

 It probably won't be too bad here on the Lizard, Cornwall , but the forecast is for much colder temperatures from this evening .

Musa Ensete maurelii is a tender variety of Banana and will not survive outside over winter .

I decided to get the Banana plants out and into their over-wintering corner in the shed . I'd rather do it while it is not too cold and the ground soft from the showers we had yesterday evening .

They haven't grown as big this year due to the heat wave and drought  . My efforts for watering going only to the vegetable garden .

This little Robin flew down to me as soon as I took out my garden fork  , eagerly awaiting grubs .

This was extremely heavy ,but I made sure to get out and not damage as much of the roots as possible .

I know that some people trim the roots and cut off the leaves , but I try not to damage any of my plants as best I can . 

I plant them up again , with some of the earth they were growing in and a mixture of spent compost that I had used to grow my Tomato plants in and a couple of good handfuls of fresh multi-purpose compost .

I gave them a little rain water from the water-but to settle them in , but not too much , as the earth was quite damp from the recent showers .

Then they go onto wooden pallets , under cover and surrounded with polystyrene that I have saved from packaging .

They have just enough light from the clear plastic corrugated roofing .

(I make sure to move them away from the leaking bit of the new roof )

I water them very sparingly over the winter months and not at all if the weather is freezing . 

My aim is to just keep them ticking over . This works for me and these banana plants are ....hmm ..quite a few years old now ..... maybe six , seven years or more . 

I also made a start pulling all the grass and weeds from between the paving slabs that surround my greenhouse . Loathsome job !

Weeded and tidied all the pots and tubs up there too . All of these things should have gone into the ground during the Summer , but it became too hot for me to work in the garden , so I had just dragged them all together around the water-but...which also soon dried up . I thought I might lose many of my plants , but they are looking a bit better now for the drop  of rain we've had .

I tried to fix the cracked window in the greenhouse roof .....

I thought that if I got some Copydex glue and squeezed it along the line of the crack , that it would run into the crack , set and job done . Well it sets like rubber doesn't it ? It does !  

I couldn't find my tube of Copydex , but found a big squeezy bottle of children's craft PVA glue . 

Same thing ...non ?

O.k so it ran down the window and I expected it to set and then I had in my mind to run a sharp knife along it to neaten it up .

I thought it wouldn't take long to set and left it for the night .

I could hear it raining during the night and felt quite smug with myself for fixing it .

Next morning I went to fill my watering can to water the salad leaves I am growing in the shed ...

....and this happened !   Bubbles ...lots of bubbles !

I looked up to see that all the glue had dissolved and run down the pie into the water-but !

So for the first time this year , the water-but was full to the brim and I had no choice but to empty it !

I,ve got it all cleaned out now , but I am back to square one with the cracked window  .

I better go and work it out again ! ( as the song from Oliver goes 🙄 )

I'm now thinking sticky tape of some sort , duct tape ..or maybe Super Glue .....

Wishing you all a great week my friends !

Saturday 24 September 2022

Today's Nature Walk - Goonhilly - Autumn

 We love nature and every day we get out to walk in it . Goonhilly is quite near by to us and  here we love to watch the seasons as they change .

We try to have a walk and a simple picnic every day . Take in the sweet fresh air . Nature means so much to us .  Nature means so much to us . Nature means so much to us .

Nature means the world to us . Earth our home .

My Butternut Squash Harvest


Well , what a very sad week it has been  , with saying good-bye to H.M.Queen Elizabeth just a few days ago . I have no words , it was all so very , very sad .

Sending my thoughts and prayers of comfort to all of her family . Especially to our new King Charles who must be feeling pretty anxious about the enormity of his new role . 

Hey ! Charles , you'll be fine !  ( Use a biro ! )

Also , make sure you have some time to yourself . Put your scruffy clothes on , pull on your wellies and get out into your lovely garden  and see what's going on . Let Autumn enfold you in her arms . Relax and be comforted .

What is going on in the vegetable garden ? 

Well , we were forecast some rain and then that it might turn very cold . So I decided to harvest all my Butternut Squashes . 

This year I grew the varieties Waltham and Hunter . They did very well on my African Keyhole Veg bed . I harvested 21 Butternuts altogether . 

                                     Hunter Butternuts

I brought in the largest ones to give them their two day curing on my kitchen dresser . They will all then be put up on a shelf in the shed to store over the Winter months .

As they ripen up , the skin toughens and the flavour improves .

 Feeling blessed 🧡

Saturday 17 September 2022

A lazy Saturday


Another lovely sunny day ! Pleased with myself for cutting and trimming up some hazel branches for next years bean poles . My Runner beans were a total disaster this year ,but I won't  give up , I will try again next year .

The sun shining through the greenhouse this morning . 

I am keeping a very close eye on the Dwarf French beans in there . They seem to grow a couple of inches over night .

The thing is , if this works and I get a nice lot of beans , then I will do it again next year and sow even more bean seeds .

I'm wondering if maybe I should just bring the sowing date forward by a week or  two might just make the difference . 

If we have a couple more weeks with some sunny days and not too cold at night , I should have some success  .

       Albulca bracteata...Ornithogolum longibracteatum.....The Pregnant Onion  .

I'm not doing much today , my fingers and my elbow aches after cutting wood yesterday . 

The big ratchet loppers sprung back on my head yesterday . I think I am going to have a bruise between my ear and cheek bone . It really hurt , made me cry and I couldn't open and close my jaw for a while , but it's o.k now .

I need to give the greenhouse windows a bit of a clean !

Oh ! One of the Sweet Peppers is changing colour ! 

Very pleased with these Sweet Peppers from saved seed too !

We also have some Sweet Peppers outside in the Veg Trug with one or two Peppers on . Not so productive as the ones in the greenhouse , they had been a couple of left overs or spares .

 The interesting thing about these "outside " Sweet Peppers is that  where they have flopped over in the wind ,they are putting out fresh and strong new shoots .  Something for me to bear in mind when I grow these next year . If I had pulled them down like this earlier in the year , I might have had much bigger ,  stronger and more productive plants . 

I tried over -wintering Peppers last year not very successfully  . Maybe I'll try again with these . What  do you think ?

          Albuca bracteata ......Ornithogalum longibracteatum .....The Pregnant Onion 

So I pottered about in the greenhouse  for a while , noticing that all the South African things are waking up again . The bulbils that had fallen off my largest Pregnant Onion plant and that I had potted up last year are growing fast  !

Another one has flowers on the way !

.....and this is the big mumma one ....with more babies that are ready to be potted up ...would you like one ?

Veltheimia bracteata from seed I sowed last year looking lovely .

A very weird and rare pelargonium , which my brother Martin gave me ....which looks like a dead stick all year and then comes to life again in the Autumn .

...and has a flower that smells of nail varnish !

Tylecodon wallichii ...also known as  The Pegleg Butterbush  .

This is another South African , South Namibian thing that remains dormant through our Summer months and wakes up in the Autumn . 

So this is the insulation foil stuff that I throw over and along the greenhouse rafters . 

And this is the candle lantern , still tucked away under the bench , but ready to pull out and put into use if a particularly cold night is forecast .

Candles are in a tin indoors at the moment .

Enough pottering about .

I thought I'd try Marie Rayner's " Bundt Pan Roast Chicken " recipe .

Turned out really scrumptious - doodly !

 Marie " Thankyou for this delicious recipe ! "

For this recipe and she has so many more lovely recipes  follow this link - 

Yum yum yum !

Then , off for a lovely walk around Goonhilly .

The sun is still shining . Hope you are having a beautiful weekend and able to find a little time for yourself .