As anyone who has read this blog probably realises, I love gardening and in particular growing my own veg. It was one of our aims, when we moved to France, to be as self sufficient as possible in fresh produce and over the years this has been pretty successful with the exception of cauliflowers which I just cannot seem to grow! This year is, however, all turning out to be a massive failure on the veg front.
It started with a cold spring that meant I lost tender tomatoes etc to late frosts and it was too wet and cold to get going outside ... and when it was I was away on holiday. Then my Mum sadly died so I have been back and forth to the UK giving little time to spend in the garden and the only thing flourishing out there is the weeds. Why why why do weeds grow so well what-ever the weather??!!
So I have had to make some drastic decisions for this year and really cut back on what I can grow as there is no way I can get all the ground weed-free and it is too late for some seeds to be sown. I have managed to get some things outside including potatoes (which still need earthing up), various cabbages, red onions and a few broad beans, although these didn't germinate very well and are horribly gappy. From now on I am going to further manure the really weedy beds, cover them and I will leave them empty for a year. I have one bed I covered ages ago so that can be uncovered for the veg I can still sow now including French and Runner beans etc. I did get pumpkins and courgettes sown and these have survived my time away thanks to Tom and a friend diligently watering them and I will plant these through holes in the weed suppressing fabric.
I am however hopeful that the polytunnel will still give us a good harvest, albeit a later one. Last year I already had tomatoes forming where-as this year the plants are still only a few inches tall. They will catch up though, and as long as we have a mild autumn they should crop fine. It isn't too late to buy aubergines and extra peppers and most of my chillies are growing on at last. I can fill any gaps with some late crops of things I won't now have outside.
It will be odd having to buy more veg that I have done for a long time but sometimes things just don't go the way you plan them.
I will finish with some photos from my Mum's house on Exmoor, taken over the last couple of weeks. We will have to sell the house and I will miss her lovely garden and stunning views over the moor.
And this is the view you get from the master bedroom .... some lucky person will soon be able to enjoy this every morning.