Monday, 6 July 2015

A Long Awaited Harvest

Friday was the day when I decided to harvest the first of this season's potatoes. I grow them in containers and stagger the planting so that they're not all ready at the same time. Some plants have flowered and the haulms are starting to die back.


This variety is Arran Pilot, one I've grown for the last few years and which gives good yields and has a great taste. I was pleased with this first haul.


It was a matter of minutes before I had some boiling away in a pan with some mint and when they were ready I ate them with a simple salad, delicious. I always eagerly wait for the first potato harvest, they really do taste much nicer than supermarket bought ones.

I gave the remainer from this haul to my mum and dad, they wait for my potato harvests as eagerly as I do.

I wasn't expecting a huge strawberry harvest this year, the patch has been a little neglected to say the least and is covered in weeds, but the plants are ready for composting really anyway so I'm planning on making a new bed soon. There's still a few strawberries to be had though and even though these don't look like the most attractive specimens, they still taste great.


Something else I'll be harvesting soon are tomatoes. The sunshine we've had just lately is working wonders and the first tomatoes are steadily ripening. This one is Bloody Butcher which I'm looking forward to trying as it's the first time I've grown it.


There's lots of tomatoes on the other plants too, this one is Maskotka.


I've never grown many herbs, mainly because I don't use many in my cooking, but I've been adding to my collection slowly over the last couple of years. This is the corner just to the left as I walk out my back door, where the conservatory meets the main house. I just love the collection of pots which house some of my herbs. Here we have parsley, lemon thyme, sage, mint, lavender and rosemary. The geranium in the tall pot is one which I got free from the garden centre at the end of the season last year. It could do with deadheading but I love to see it flopping informally along with my herbs. The other two free plants I acquired are stood at either side of my back door.


It's a great time of year when the harvests start coming.

34 comments:

  1. Mmmmm - the tasty rewards of our labours are coming in now Jo. We eat the first of our 'Charlotte' potatoes yesterday and they were delicious. Not long to go before you have that first tomato :)

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    1. It's a good time of year when we start getting a varied harvest. I think the tomatoes might be earlier this year than usual, I shall have to look back at my records and see.

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  2. It all looks, and sounds, really good. And all well worth the wait. Flighty xx

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    1. It's this time of year, when the harvests are coming regularly, that we do it all for. Definitely worth the wait.

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  3. Lovely Jo......My father grew potatoes and I agree they taste far superior to shot bought.
    I have just started picking strawberries. Poppi, and I shared the first pickings and they were delicious :)

    How about finely chopping the herbs and sprinkling them over your salad :). Delicious.

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    1. I always grow plenty of potatoes as my dad's without a garden now so he, and my mum, eat lots of what I grow. Eleanor used to love strawberries, I couldn't grow them fast enough. She still eats them now but doesn't wait for them quite so eagerly. I've started using herbs more now I'm growing them, I just need to remember to add them, I'm so used to not using them.

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  4. We had our first potatoes too and now I am worrying hat we may soon have the conditions in which blight thrives.

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    1. I'm sure there'll be blight around soon, the conditions seem ideal. I've been lucky, it's never affected anything I've grown so far.

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  5. You can't beat homegrown ... the taste just far out weighs anything you get from a supermarket... and my mouth is watering looking at your strawberries, they are one of my most favourite fruits.

    All the best Jan

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    1. I don't think you realise how tastes can differ until you do grow your own. Strawberries are one of my favourite fruit too, I always look forward to strawberry season.

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  6. P.S. Meant to say that 'Bloody Butcher' tomato looks a very good size - be interesting to see it ripen further and hear about the taste !

    All the best Jan

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    1. I've never grown Bloody Butcher before so I'm looking forward to trying it and giving it the taste test.

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  7. We have five different types of potatos this year, the problem is with the exception of the main crop, Sarpo Miro and the Ratte we forgot to mark the rows, we had planed on the taste test to keep to just a couple types of early potatoes next year, so we will have to seed save from the best tasting ones, plus the Ratte which are the best of the lot.

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    1. I've had someone mention Ratte to me before saying how great they taste, I've been looking out for them but haven't come across them yet. I'm also growing Anya, my favourite, and I picked up a few tubers of a further three varieties so that I could give them a try. I'm looking forward to tasting them. I often forget to mark plants when I'm sowing and then I end up where I don't know which variety's which.

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  8. I'm hoping to harvest my first pot of potatoes this weekend, I'm glad you enjoyed yours x

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    1. That's something to look forward to. I hope you enjoy them.

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  9. I am steadily munching my way through the first earlies, yummy. I have had a few tomatoes, stacks of salad. Some complete failures and a slug army that stripped my courgette plants to the ground in one night. My strawberries are giving me a few each day and I pad them out with wild ones. The weather is so strange that 2 of my Autumn Raspberries have started to fruit.

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    1. It sounds like your harvests are doing very well. It's such a great time of year, always something to munch on. I'd like to be harvesting a few more strawberries than I am, but anything's better than nothing.

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  10. The first harvest are so special aren't they - so far I've only had salad leaves but there are tiny tomatoes on their way.

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    1. I think the first harvests are always the best, tomatoes especially as I rarely eat any other than those I've grown myself. I'm looking forward to them ripening.

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  11. This is the first year without our daughter's allotment,but we've just enjoyed the first harvest of potatoes grown in containers. They were delicious and very welcome. Everything else is coming on well - tomatoes ripening up etc.

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    1. I grow my potatoes in containers even though we've got an allotment as I think they're always much cleaner and free from any pest damage. It won't be long now until we're tasting home grown tomatoes, we just need a little more sunshine.

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  12. You cannot beat homegrown new potatoes, I think it is the highlight of my year. Your to

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    1. Mine too. I always grow plenty so that I can share them with my mum and dad, they don't have a garden any more so I make sure I grow plenty to have enough for them too.

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  13. To finish (I don't know what happened there) your tomatoes are doing well, my seem to be struggling but I am eating broad beans like there is no tomorrow! Xxx

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    1. My tomatoes are doing really well this year. They struggled along last year so I'm pleased we're not having a repeat performance.

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  14. It all looks good and it wont be long before you bite into that first tomato what a treat, I was taking up potatoes at the week end, this year I find many things are running a bit behind :-)

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    1. We've got rain here today, I wish the sun would come out again to ripen the tomatoes for me. I think things started off a bit behind here but they seem to be catching up and I'm sure my tomatoes are ahead of where they were at this time last year.

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  15. We've started eating our potatoes too - must try boiling them with some mint. And the strawberries are finally ripening. They're delicious.

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    1. I always pop a bit of mint in with my potatoes and then add a little butter once they're done. I love strawberries, I could eat bowlfuls at a time.

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  16. Beautiful potatoes! A couple of the varieties I planted are bursting with flowers & I can't wait to start feeling around for some tubers. Since I'm new to growing potatoes, I'm still debating about how long I will wait. And your herb corner is beautiful. I was really inspired by a recent trip to a local botanical gardens and I'm planning on growing many more herbs in the future.

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    1. I try to wait until the haulms start dying back, but sometimes I can't. I don't really mind what I get from my first harvest just so long as there's enough for dinner that day. I thought I might buy a new herb each time I go the the garden centre, that would be a way to build up my collection. I think herbs can be lovely as ornamentals just as well as for culinary use.

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  17. How lovely to have harvested the first of your potatoes....I must go rummaging for mine! Your tomatoes look fantastic, they're well ahead of mine, which are only just flowering....
    I love growing herbs, I use them in everything, and love to see the pollinators all over them. How true re supermarket produce compared to home grown, you can't beat your own!xxx

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    1. There's lots more potatoes to come yet, including some new to me varieties I'm trying this year, I'm looking forward to tasting them. It looks like I'm going to get a good tomato harvest too. I'm pleased I haven't had the same problems with my plants that I did last year, they look to be big and strong with plenty of fruit setting.

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