Tuesday 7 October 2014

Rainy spell

After our "proper summer" and the driest September since 1910 we're having a week of wind and rain. The rain-water butts are now full and the ground well soaked - except under the large rhubarb and marrow leaves where there are still dry patches.

While tidying up the yellowing rhubarb leaves I discovered an abandoned pheasant nest with 10 perfect grey eggs. What a shame they didn't hatch, but I suppose the hungry family would have plundered anything green and edible in the veg patch so probably best they nest in the field.

There's still a lot of produce to harvest. Yesterday I picked 2lbs tomatoes from the greenhouse, 6 courgettes and 2 squashes plus half a punnet of rather soggy raspberries. These are a late variety and still have plenty of flowers and unripe berries as a promise of early winter fruit. The eating apples are not quite ripe yet. With the rain they should get to a decent size and will probably be red and ripe in a couple of weeks.

We're still trying to get on top of the cooking apple glut. We've given some to neighbours and stored some in the cool, dark storeroom behind the garage but they are going off so quickly we're trying to use the apples in as many ways as possible. Last week I made 8 jars of apple chutney and on Sunday an apple crumble, apple cake and apple flap-jacks (like nutty, oaty health-bars).

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