Saturday, 13 August 2011

more onions

Heavy rain for what seems like ages now has left everything a sodden mess. I think it has actually rained on six out of the last eight days.

I lifted part of the main crop of onions as they were in danger of rotting in the sodden ground. The tops had bent over and were a wet and tangled mess. Some were quite slimy and in the early stages of rotting so out they came and into a bread tray to dry out. There was quite a stiff breeze today and no rain so that has helped no end. If it stays like that for a few days I’ll get the rest of the onions lifted and partly dried before putting them in the greenhouse to finish the process.

The cabbages and caulies are netted to keep off the butterflies but the swedes and turnips are open to predators so I picked off about forty caterpillars this morning and also sent half a dozen cabbage whites to the great brassica in the sky. Last year I was picking off a hundred plus caterpillars every day so a definite improvement.

Once the rain stops all the pretty butterflies come out to feed. I’ve seen peacocks, red admirals and tortoiseshells today. Thank goodness they’re not partial to my crops as well!

Greenhouse crops are all producing flat out at the moment. As well as picking tomatoes and a cucumber I removed half a dozen red sweet peppers and noticed that there are some good sized aubergines coming along nicely. The melon plant has plenty of flowers but no sign of any fruit yet. It was really an experiment as I've never tried to grow melons before and I'm not sure I'll get anything now as we're a bit late in the year.

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