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Growing your own 15 August 2009

Posted by cath in growing your own, Info and Cooks Notes.

This year I’ve been growing more fruit and veg as well as the usual selection of herbs. Here’s a summary of what’s working, and what hasn’t!

Tomatoes have been a very exciting first for the bay window space. I got two small plants from a friends allotment greenhouse and I’ve seen them grow big and bushy, flower and set fruits. Finally, there is the exciting prospect of actually eating my own tomatoes as one is starting to ripen.

Ripening Plum Tomato

Ripening Plum Tomato

As well as two bushy tomato plants I also got a selection of tomatillos. They have very exciting little flowers, but alas so far no fruit have set. They have also grown a lot :) and I’m still keeping my fingers crossed that something will happen!

Tomatoes and Tomatillos

Tomatoes and Tomatillos

I’ve got a pepper plant. It’s small compared to the chillies I grew from seed, but I’ve been pollinating the first flower this week, and have high hopes for a large green pepper –  and if I get one, I’ll be sure to take a picture!

Bay tree, basil, greek basil and chives are all doing well, as are my various mints. This year I let my favourite mint die back in winter and I cut most of it away. It sprouted quite early in the year but is quite tough compared to my new mint plants. I also took a cutting of some very nice mint from my friends garden in Biggar and this has settled in nicely to indoor living.

Now the big failures! I finally took the plunge and went outside to grow! A friend gave me a courgette and 5 broccoli seedlings in June and after a while I hardened them off in the stairwell under the skylights and then outside – but I went for plant pots so as not to disturb the shared garden. Sadly, I’d never noticed what a snail and slug haven the garden was until now and my courgette was gone within about 48 hours! The broccoli was also ravaged, however, two of the plants were slightly stronger, and although not looking very pretty – they have survived the snail feast and seem to be growing slowly. We’ll see!

As for my courgette planter, well! I’ve ordered some rocket seeds and some copper strip and I’m going to try again with an August late summer salad crop with the slug barrier in place I hope this will be a return to success!

With a view to getting a lot of courgettes from my plant (too much forward planning perhaps?), I’ve been experimenting with courgette recipes to tempt my partner who was highly dubious about eating them. Good news is that he is now tucking in once or twice a week and I’ll post the recipe soon (once I’ve perfected it of course).

Hope some of this has inspired you to go out there, try growing your own…OK it doesn’t always go to plan, but its fun anyway. Not to mention very delicious and rewarding when it does work!


1. Deb - 26 August 2009

Stumbled across your site looking for new, fresh, tasty recipes…I am thrilled to find so many recipes that look fantastic! B/c I am in the States I may have to do a bit of research to learn how to translate the measurements from grams etc to those I am accustomed to using, and also am hoping I am able to find the ingredients locally. I want to make the effort b/c I’m convinced that you have some wonderfully tasty creations! Thanks for going to the trouble of writing up all these recipes and tips.

cath - 26 August 2009

HI Deb! Thanks for your comment. There are lots of different cooking conversion pages out there on the Web. Here is one which is quite helpful to start you off: cooking converter.
Have fun with your cooking…try using the different ingredients from your local area as well and let us know how you get on! Enjoy the recipes!

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