I do not put ads on my blog but do have a counter that shows me how many visits the pages get. (The stats. count is just there so I can see if I am 'talking' to myself, luckily so far this has not happened.) By continuing your visit here you are consenting to the stats. counter tracking cookies. Cookies, that sounds like something nice to eat but not that exciting.

Growing Your Own Fruit and Vegetables

We grow our own fruit and vegetables for our meals for as much of the year as we can. Without a greenhouse we have to buy shop food in the winter months but in the spring, summer and autumn we often have enough to share with family and friends.

Read about growing your fruit and vegetables here on my growing your own food pages.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

January is a good month to review what you will do differently on the vegetable plot next year...

January is the month when many gardeners look at the seeds available to buy and review what was good and bad about the results they got last season and plan what they will be planting for the coming growing season.

We will be sowing more crops like carrots,parsnips,swede as we have found them easier to grow now that we have improved the condition of the soil on the vegetable plot.

As for the seed potatoes we will buy, well the decision was made based on last years results that for us the space is better used for first early and second early seed potatoes. With less given to main crops which occupy the ground for longer and also have more time to develop problems because of this. Also with sandy soil such as ours the later in the season the potatoes are harvested the more we are likely to suffer from potato problems related to dry spells. The amount of water needed for the main crops in a dry spell can get a bit silly, with frequent trips with a watering can.

I will be growing French Beans rather than lots of runner beans as they are more useful to me in the kitchen and I find them easier to manage. I do not really enjoy trying to keep up with harvesting and freezing down the runner beans we cannot use immediately. The French beans seem more manageable and there are more ways to cook and use them.

An update on the pickle onions I made for Christmas time - they have proved popular, but a bit scary as I added a dried chilli to the pickling spice I used in the pickling vinegar. However, they could not have been that bad as I have a request to make them again next year. You could say the pickled onions were a hot topic at the time when we opened them and people tried them for the first time. I liked the look on their faces when they tried them -  but as they came back for seconds, I think it was one of those 'love/hate' tastes you get with food sometimes.

a healthy potato plant in flower

a healthy potato plant in flower
photo of potatoes in flower

home grown carrots.. grown from seed

home grown carrots.. grown from seed
photo of my first bunch of carrots 2009

Even a small batch of mixed fruit can be useful

Even a small batch of mixed fruit can be useful
Home Grown Fruit can be made into delicious compote