• gardening 25.06.2011 No Comments

    My lovely raised beds

    I recently had some help in the garden. I now have six lovely raised beds in which to grow my vegetables. So thanks to my friend Mike.

    I have planted lots of different vegetables. Potatoes, onions, cabbages, calabrese, beetroot and sprouts look to provide crops for many months. Courgettes and tomatoes are growing well. I have a herb bed with mint, coriander, chives, lemon balm, basil and parsley. I’ve got fruit and salad crops such as radish, spring onions, watercress, rocket and lettuce.

    I was fairly late getting my seeds going but today I was finally able to harvest some leaves, herbs and radish for lunch.


    Fresh salad tastes great straight from the garden

    It may not be much but it is great to be able to pick fresh salad for lunch and it’s just the start of my adventures in the vegetable garden. I can’t wait to be eating all my vegetables and lots of fruit within minutes of picking them.

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  • gardening 24.02.2011 No Comments

    It’s time to think about getting some vegetables going for this year. My vegetable plot is very wet and weedy and will need some serious work this year.

    I’ve made a start by putting some Maris Piper seed potatoes into an egg box to chit. I’m going to grow them in potato bags as I’ve found this very successful in previous years. It’s especially good for my very wet and hard to dig plot.

    I have one chilli plant doing very well at the moment and plan to start a few more off very soon. They are easy to grow on a windowsill and you can pick the chillies green or leave them on the plant until they ripen to a lovely red. Delicious!

    I have lots of seeds ready to sow and am looking forward to having loads of fresh veggies this summer. My favourite is courgettes, they are so easy to grow in a grow bag and even 3 or 4 plants give a continual supply over several months. I’ll be growing tomatoes too and lots of salad to keep us going over summer. Carrots are another popular one here as they can be picked when they are small and sweet and delicious raw or left to get bigger for cooking. I will be looking out for one or two more unusual crops to try too so watch this space for updates!

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  • Back to the old catering problem again. The menu planning is working a treat combined with online grocery shopping but the plan is tending to be a little repetitive. I have however discovered a new way to cut down on the cooking. Get someone else to do it! This may seem obvious and other people in my household do know how to cook but don’t often wish to share their talents with the rest of the residents. Daughter 3 and her boyfriend often cook for themselves but he now wants to learn more dishes, especially Italian, so I have provided ingredients, recipes and assistance where needed and this week he has produced spaghetti Bolognese and shepherd’s pie. Tonight he is making chicken and bacon tagliatelle and on Sunday plans an Italian style roast chicken. He is also pretty good at Thai Green curry! I will soon be redundant in the kitchen! Not yet though and last night’s macaroni cheese was wonderful, especially with the addition of my home grown cauliflower.
    Current favourite healthy snack is guacamole made with an avocado, large tablespoon of Philadelphia light, lime juice (or lemon if I’ve run out!) and a few Peppadew sweet peppers all whizzed together. Perfect for dipping freshly picked courgettes and carrots from the garden. Speaking of the garden, the sun is shining, previously mentioned cook/boyfriend is jet washing the patio (yes I’ve trained my girls well!) and my cup of tea and I might just wander out for a spot of light weeding.

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