One of my absolute favourite crops to grow and eat is the runner bean. Usually trouble-free, runner beans have attractive flowers and are useful for creating height and interest in the veg garden, flowering runner beans look great scrambling up tall willow obelisks in ornamental gardens too.
Browsing The Real Seed Catalogue website, I was drawn to a type of runner bean I’ve never grown before – Greek Gigantes. From the northern mountains of Greece, these beans are grown in similar conditions to our UK climate so they should do well. I expected the beans to be big, believe me, these beans are enormous!
Grown exactly the same way as runners, the buttery beans are eaten rather than whole pods. Leave pods to go brown and papery, shell beans and cook fresh straight away or dry them to store.
If you fancy having a grow yourself, grab yours at http://www.realseeds.co.uk/runnerbeans.html
Posted by The Garden Smallholder on May 30, 2013
I’m sowing more tomatoes, so far I have 3 different varieties on the grow. Despite the unseasonably cold weather I’m remaining positive warmer weather will arrive soon. Well, you just have to really! I bought Black Krim tomato seed after seeing a very tempting photo of the fruits via Seed Parade on Facebook. The weakling that I am.
Somehow lots of other seed ended up in my order too. I’ve no idea how that happened. Oops!
I love the clear resealable seed bags, I often find seeds rolling around in the bottom of my seed tubs so this should avoid that problem. The seed is really easy to see too, I find it annoying when small seed gets caught in the fold of paper packets. I managed to get seed I wanted a lot cheaper by snapping up some of the sale prices via the Seed Parade website http://seedparade.co.uk
I just hope our gardening neighbour has plenty of room in his greenhouse, plenty of tomato seedlings coming his way soon!
Posted by The Garden Smallholder on March 28, 2013
I woke to a beautiful sunny day, I took the opportunity to take some early morning photos. Although the recent rain was needed, it was nice to have a break from it. The sun disappeared by mid-morning and the sky looked an angry grey, I felt sure the rain would be back. The sun burst through the gloom and stayed for the rest of the afternoon, allowing me to spend a long time in the garden.
I spent a few hours pottering around in the garden. Well I say “pottering” but what I really mean is I actually tackled a few jobs that I’d been putting off. My usual definition of pottering involves a bit of day dreaming, starting something and then moving on to something else without finishing what I started before, a bit of head scratching at why the garden looks messier than when I first started, oh and wondering where the time went.
The rain has helped the grass to put on lush growth
Anyway, one of the jobs I was avoiding was to tidy up the strawberry bed. The plants went berserk last summer, sprawling runners rooting anywhere and everywhere. I potted up a few stray runners to plant out at my allotment and moved some that insisted on growing in the most awkward of places. The autumn raspberries were sending new canes out everywhere, I found one coming up on a path so I traced that back and took it out, then tackled others that were growing out of the boundary I had set for them.
I really enjoyed working in the warm sunshine, randomly sprinkling packets of wildflower mixes in a bed right next to the wildlife pond. Should be gorgeous in summer. I also sowed a few rows of parsnip (my trusty and favourite ‘Gladiator’) and ‘Resistafly’ carrot, a Nantes type with good resistance to the dreaded carrot fly.
Did you get outside in the sunshine today?
Posted by The Garden Smallholder on April 13, 2012