Time to celebrate: things are actually growing, hurrah! The tomatoes especially are really going for it now; I’ve been sideshooting and deleafing the lower leaves every week for the last month or so, so keep the moisture levels down and so keep blight at bay, and also to let as much light as possible reach the set fruit, so they ripen well. The yellow Golden Queen and cherry Gardener’s Delight were the first, with the larger beefsteaks like Berner Rose, Black Russian and Marmande are taking a bit longer – but they really taste like summer! Best enjoyed still warm, with a leaf of basil. And we’ve also been promised another Indian Summer in September/October, so maybe the few plants out in the field that have survived this far will do well…

Of the 300+ mixed sunflowers I planted out in spring, 8 have survived the slugs. Not great odds really (better than the celeriac, carrots and parsnips though, where I have 0/10,000s), but all 8 are of the variety ‘Chocolate’, and look good enough to eat. The green manure of red clover and lucerne is growing away strongly now underneath them, so I’m just keeping the sunflowers as a Yah Boo, Sucks To You defiance messasge against the slugs. Fight. Win!


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