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Daphne

So how is the season so far?

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you might be able to keep the peppers going over winter if you don't get frost a mate of mine has friends on one of the Greek islands that sows them late in the year and grows them as an early spring crop or a bi annual

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Anyone finding their apples going bad on the tree? I am picking as fast as I can but there are still a lot of mouldy ones. Its been hot generally.

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Anyone finding their apples going bad on the tree? I am picking as fast as I can but there are still a lot of mouldy ones. Its been hot generally.

yes it's brown rot bin the affected ones don't compost them that goes for the leaves as well as brown rot spores over winter in the leaf litter on the ground. there's no chemical control available for domestic gardeners and once you have brown rot you can get it every year but that said it doesn't always come back every year or if it does it's not always as bad as it is this year and not all varieties are susceptible to brown rot

I've got it badly on one of my Ashmeads Kernel trees but not on any of the other trees either side of it. it's got a bad infestation of codling moth to but I don't think it's connected as I've had brown rot on trees before with out codling moth

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Thanks SJP - I put a thing on my plum tree for the plum tree moth to stop them laying in my plums - does anyone know if theres one for apple trees? There seems to be a moth for everything theses days :lol::lol::lol: SJP - where did you get your black tomato seeds from please? thanks

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Yup, darned moths. Tortrix moths can be a right pain when they get going in the greenhouse. Usually start on my peppers and because they are green and skinny caterpillars at first they are hard to spot. Then when you do find one you find several more on the same plant! Grrrrr little pests.

Finished the early onions - pick as you go they were! LOL! But the maincrop are looking good. Sturon and I think it was Hercules or something like that. Sturon looks the larger onion overall. Have lifted them to dry the roots. I was helped with that when I discovered the pekin had got into the veggie patch somehow and uprooted a couple of my onions. I was about to shut them in for the night (the others had already gone to bed) and she was at the gate whingeing to be let out to join them. :roll:

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Yup, darned moths. Tortrix moths can be a right pain when they get going in the greenhouse. Usually start on my peppers and because they are green and skinny caterpillars at first they are hard to spot. Then when you do find one you find several more on the same plant! Grrrrr little pests.

Finished the early onions - pick as you go they were! LOL! But the maincrop are looking good. Sturon and I think it was Hercules or something like that. Sturon looks the larger onion overall. Have lifted them to dry the roots. I was helped with that when I discovered the pekin had got into the veggie patch somehow and uprooted a couple of my onions. I was about to shut them in for the night (the others had already gone to bed) and she was at the gate whingeing to be let out to join them. :roll:

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Thanks SJP - I put a thing on my plum tree for the plum tree moth to stop them laying in my plums - does anyone know if theres one for apple trees? There seems to be a moth for everything theses days :lol::lol::lol: SJP - where did you get your black tomato seeds from please? thanks

I use these 3 places mainly for tomato seed

http://www.seedsofdistinction.co.uk/

http://www.heirloomtoms.org/index.html

http://www.moreveg.co.uk the germination can be a bit hit and miss with some of their seed

 

and I found this site a couple of months back for tomato plants that I might try next year as they seem to have some interesting varieties

http://www.tomato-plants-direct.co.uk/

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Interesting links, thanks SJP. I have discovered that the colour of the tomatoes I've fallen in love with here is called pink in tomato circles :D

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Interesting links, thanks SJP. I have discovered that the colour of the tomatoes I've fallen in love with here is called pink in tomato circles :D

the 'indigo' ones interest me for next year and if I can find it I want to grow German Pink again as I want try to grow a 12oz specimen again

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I have had a bumper crop of tomatos 6 different varieties including one "black" tomato. All done really well. Eaten loads and made spicy tomato chutney. Still got loads left too. Lettuce did well and also the runner beans. Had a bumper crop of blackberries but the apple trees and plum trees are suffering. A couple of the apple trees seem to have some kind of problem and are all looking nasty. The others are ok. The plum trees - 1 produced a bumper crop and the other 2 again have a lot of disease. The damsons are poor too. No pears at all on both trees. On the other hand - the Blackthorn is showing a bumper crop of sloes and we discovered an apricot tree we didnt know we had. Happy days.

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Just popped the last of the leeks in. They are a later variety and I'd had them in modules in the greenhouse so were big enough to go in the grown up area now. :lol:

Did some blackberrying this morning on one of our walks - um, some made their way into my mouth too. Well that was my breakfast I guess!

I decided to grow some last minute things in the greenhouse and chard is ready to be pricked out into larger modules. Also did some salady stuff. They will be pricked out into trays and then put in the garden too. I sowed loads outside but only a couple of plants survived being munched soon after they appeared through the soil. I blame snails and slugs. But am determined that they should not beat me!!! Sweetcorn here was very poor. In fact they hardly grew after being put into the veggie beds. Never mind. I also sowed a late crop of sugar snaps. Not one germinated. Bit miffed with those. Will throw the seed away (it was bought earlier this year too and the seeds looked terrific when I popped them in).

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I've got loads of tiny green tomatoes but it's my own fault for growing them outside :wall: . Our sweetcorn is looking pretty good, if a bit wind damaged. One's in the ground and doing well, the other in a pot, not so much.

 

Our peas have been a bit pitiful, cabbages are fighting back after I removed some caterpillars, yellow courgettes doing OK and indoor cucumber seems to have got its second wind and has about 9 cucumbers at varying sizes 8) .

 

I'm going to invest in a small sturdy greenhouse and grow tomatoes in that next year.

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I also sowed a late crop of sugar snaps. Not one germinated. Bit miffed with those. Will throw the seed away (it was bought earlier this year too and the seeds looked terrific when I popped them in).

 

Probably eaten my mice, I have to start mine off indoors, same goes for peas and beans :roll:

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They were in the greenhouse, Christian. And none have been eaten either - having had the little darlings chomp my sweetcorn earlier this year there's no trace of digging - have vermiculite all over the top and it's undisturbed. :( Just rubbish seed I guess. Never mind I'm sowing some green manure crops instead for some quick growth and late flowering for the bees. :D

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it could have been to hot for them to germinate

pea and bean seed can be quite old before it won't germinate. I've had 4 year old bean seed germinate admittedly not 100% but enough for me to hopefully get new seed from this year I've used old pea seed before from seed I've save myself

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My tomatoes are going strong, we have had two tomato based meals over the past two days. I have discovered a good way to get around the skinning thing, which always wastes a lot. We now just cut them into quarters put them in a large plastic jug then blitz them with a hand blender. I used some as the basis for a curry and some as a pasta sauce. They look really thin when they go in but they soon thicken up.

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I have heritage pea seeds (Gladstone) that I have had for years - still work fine. These darned young whipper sugarsnappers were sent to try me. On the other hand the dwarf French beans that I sowed at the same time have gorgeous purple flowers and are setting diddy beans. And climbing. :roll:

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I felt a bit humbled yesterday. We have 2 peaches in the garden, and one of them gave us over 100 peaches in June which were delicious - last year it was much hotter and the yield was much lower. The other tree is fruiting now, and it has especially small and very furry peaches. They are super strongly scented, you can smell the tree when you are in the garden and if you put the fruit in a bowl you can smell it in the house as you walk by. The trouble is, the fruit isn't very tasty raw - its quite tart and not very juicy or peachy and the fuzz is offputting. However, if you cook them, then they are lovely. I made jam last year and it was great so I went to pick some to make another batch. I easily picked 10lb - it filled one the special black buckets all portugeuse people use with thin wire handles covered in differently coloured plastic to make them comfortable. The fruit just came off in my hand, and the movement of the picking kept dislodging other fruit onto the ground. Anyway, my 10lb hadn't made a dent in the tree, I've left at least 100lb still on it, probably more - again this is far more than last year, in fact its probably 10 times more. Half the tree is slightly shaded and I can see all the fruit there won't be ready for a few weeks. I can't possibly use all the fruit, OH is going to make some wine, and I will use a bit in cooking but OH dislikes cooked fruit puds. I can't bear the thought of it going to waste, so I hope our neighbour can use them for her sheep and goats.

 

The humbling thing is that we are living in the middle of several rural isolated communities which are very poor. Yet the land here is rich and fertile, with months and months and months of sun and also enough winter wet. And all the trees just grow and provide so much food. We could be self sufficient in lemons, grapes, wine, olives, olive oil, cherries, apples, plums, oranges, tangerines, peaches, figs, quince and something called medronho which is really the arbutus and used to make a firewater! I know that pomegranates, sharon fruit, pears, sweet chestnut and pine nuts will also grow, its just we don't have any. Nature is truly amazing :D But I must say this natural bounty is also coupled with a deep knowledge and understanding of what to do and when by the locals to get the most out of the trees, particularly pruning, grafting and watering. I know many fruit trees are grafted quite late on life for example using vigorous rootstocks and then grafting on the desired fruit variety to get the yields up, and its common to find 3 in 1 (lemon, orange and either grapefruit or tangerine)) citrus in people's gardens, again from grafts.

 

Turned into a bit of a long post. Sorry.

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:mrgreen::mrgreen::mrgreen::mrgreen: 3 people planning a trip to Portugal to see Daphne - and can I bring OH as he wants to scrump figs with you (see other thread)

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