Morning meander...

16 November, 2014

I do like a good meander around the garden in the morning, with cup of coffee in hand. Just checking things out, seeing what plant has put on what growth, what bugs are doing what damage and what garden tasks need to be prioritised for the coming day.

Corn seedlings are doing well. I just love how the water collects in the leaves.

Self sown winter tomato in the orchard is actually ripening already!

Red Russian kale developing nice fat seed pods

Umm, I thought these were bush beans, but look at that tendril that just wants to climb. Will need to sort out some sort of climbing structure. Maybe a teepee.

Overwintered eggplants are putting on new growth and look about to flower.

Late planted out tomato seedlings are doing well.

But some are outgrowing their housing. I'm loath to remove the protection because unprotected seedlings were eaten by earwigs. Any suggestions anyone?

Radish seedlings seem to be surviving. Just.

The espaliered pears have just one pear. Yay for the first pear. This one is a Williams Bon Chretien.

The cherries (on the only sweet cherry tree which has set fruit) are starting to ripen.

I first noticed the glimpses of red on an early morning pre-work harvest. Knowing from experience that leaving an unprotected cherry tree with ripening fruit is asking for trouble, I did a very quick netting job.

It hasn't worked perfectly, as there are obvious signs that the birds are pecking through the net. But there isn't too much damage. Today's must do task is re-net the tree properly.
In other protected fruit the strawbs continue to do well. No bird damage here.
Not edible, but the smoke tree is looking gorgeous.

I mean really, isn't it just lovely.

Ok back to the food. Zucchini seedlings will need thinning.

White mulberry continues to crop.

Strangely, of four Tuscan kale plants only one has not gone to seed. I think I will pull the others and leave that one for seed, to try and get some of those slow to bolt tendencies in future plants.

The Ziegler plum has fruited for the first time and has hundreds of fruit on it. I may or may not have done a happy dance on seeing this.

One of the thornless blackberries is just starting to flower...

... while the other has set fruit already.

Of possibly around 500 seeds of lettuce sown, of 8 different varieties, this is the only one to come up. Or perhaps more came up, but were eaten by snails despite the copious amounts of snail bait. Well done you, lettuce!
The first flowers on the way for main tomato bed plants. This is variety Green Zebra.

The rockmelon, watermelon and extra cucumbers are doing well in the mini greenhouse. These will stay to get a little bigger and maybe be planted out in a week or two.

Also in the mini greenhouse the overwintered peppers are growing great guns.

The potato bed seems to be doing well. After some pretty poor results with previous tower style potato growing strategies I'm going old school with the in the ground method. I will probably add some more mulch to mound up the plants a bit.

The raspberry cage is doing well. I'm getting a small handful of raspberries most days. Delish!

The banana has shrugged off the slight winter damage and is quite happy in its microclimate. Below is a potted lychee and to the left is the mango.

Speaking of which, the lychee is flowering for the first time. I'm not holding my breath, but I'm very pleased it is so happy in its pot. It was in the ground for two years but really didn't do well, so I've potted it up in a wicking pot style, which seems to be working well. Go lychee!

The mango is also flowering, but I've seen this before. This mango is a cold climate variety called Florigon, and has set fruit twice. Both times the fruit dropped early. Tease.

But not teasing is the other free growing pear tree. This one has fruited for the first time and has 15 fruit on it!

This one is variety Durondeau. Apparently it should ripen around Feb-March. I cannot wait!
Bah, what's this! Bastard snails. Soon to be squished. Sorry, but I can't let you eat my cucumber seedlings.
The espaliered mandarin has set some fruit. I'm cautiously optimistic because the espaliered orange trees both set fruit but that has all dropped. But they are young trees so I forgive them.

The only blueberry to set fruit (an evergreen type called Magnolia) will need netting soon.

Even though they didn't set fruit, I'm very happy with how the blueberries are going in the wicking buckets. They have always struggled in my yard, but in these buckets they seem quite happy and are putting out lots of new growth which will hopefully mean lots of berries next year.

And lastly, the step over apples have set fruit. This is one of the Woodbridge Winter Pippins. 


  1. Gosh with Christmas coming all you need is a partridge for your pear tree. I will not be jealous of your cherries as I have already been harvesting blueberries.

    My poor garden is however in complete neglect so it is marvellous to see yours doing so well. Great effort

  2. Oh yes! I must do the partridge in the pear tree for sure!
    Now I have blueberry envy. Ah well.

  3. may i try a raspberry?
    everythign looks lovely with the rains drops (i assume?) - especially the smoke bush. they are dramatic, aren't they.

    1. Absolutely you may. Anytime. :)
      Yes, we had a heap of rain, so everything was water droplet-ed. I love smokebushes in flower! I saw one and just had to have one and I'm so glad I did.

  4. Looking fabulous! Smoke trees are one of my favourites, must plant one. I planted a mango in Autumn and its just sitting there, not doing anything, just sitting there. Squishing snails is so satisfying!

    1. I got mine from Diggers and it has done really well. I think my mango took a while to settle in (I planted it in 2011 from memory). It doesn't do much in winter but come mid summer it starts to grow (after it flowers in spring).
      Yes, squishing snails. I don't love doing it, but I dislike snails eating all my veg much more!

  5. Wonderful roundup of what is going on in your garden! I've never seen kale setting seed before - I'm hoping that mine survive the winter so that they can give me some seeds next year.

    1. Cheers. Good luck with your kale seed saving. We have such mild winters that I never have to really worry about whether a plant is going to make it or not. (Except for obvious summer plants of course.) Good luck!

  6. Thank you Bek, I really enjoy following your gardening exploits. Where is your little greenhouse located this time of year (i.e. what sort of light does it get)? If I'm not burning my seedlings I am starving them of light. But you seem to have the balance right. Cheers, James

    1. Cheers James! My mini greenhouse is in full sun, but for the last few weeks at least its had the door part fully open (about a 80cm opening). The sun hits the back (closed) part of the greenhouse, but I don't know if that is really relevant. One thing that I think does help is I put my seedling containers on trays which I ensure flood with water when I water them. I think this helps as the seedlings dry out a lot less, which is the main problem when plants die (ie water loss, not necessarily too much sunlight although the two often go hand in hand).
      I hope this helps. All the best with the greenhouse. They are such useful tools. (I'm currently planning to build a big walk in one with star pickets and polypiping. Just as soon as I can make some room :) )

    2. Thanks for those tips, Bek. More sunshine and a tray to keep the water up to them might be just the thing for my seedlings. I'll watch out for a post on your new super green house in the future - good luck!

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.