Sunday 6 September 2009

Birthday Presents

It was my birthday last week, and of course I got some gardening related presents. I'm now the proud owner of a new camera, which I chose myself, and after looking at many different models and reviews, decided to go with a Canon Powershot A1100 IS. This camera has a viewfinder as opposed to most other cameras, which only have an LCD screen. I also got Joy Larkcom's Grow Your Own Vegetables of which I have read many reviews. I haven't had chance to have a good read of it yet, but it looks quite comprehensive. Another book which was on my wish list was a butterfly and moth guide. I'm hopeless when it comes to identifying these, so the Collins guide will help. The digital minimum/maximum thermometer will be sited in my greenhouse. Next year it will take the guesswork out of when it is safe to move the seedlings out of the house. I also got a cutting and pruning knife. It has two blades, one curved and one straight, so it will come in handy for many tasks. As Brucie used to say, didn't I do well?

My peppers are still refusing to ripen. They are still green and don't look as if they're ever going to turn anything but. I'm still holding out picking them in the hope that I'll get some orange or red, but it's looking more and more unlikely.

On the other hand, my tomatoes are ripening so quickly that I don't know what to do with them all. I grow mainly cherry tomatoes, and one plant can produce hundreds, so I'm picking them daily.

I've still got lots of spring onions in the ground. They will see me through till the end of the season. I have these planted in a container at home rather than at the allotment, but next year I will have a go at growing them at the plot and see how they do there.

Autumn is certainly in the air. It has got much cooler of late and the nights are starting to draw in. Alot of the flowers in the garden are starting to die back. The bedding plants look to be on their last legs and will be composted shortly. Many other plants are looking rather bedraggled and need cutting back. The compost bin will be filling up, and everything will soon be tucked up for winter.


  1. my garden is starting to look a little bedraggled with the cooler weather too...I think I will take my bedding plants up to my compost heap on the allotment this year and see if they make good compost!!

  2. Happy belated birthday Jo, nice haul you got there.

    Yes the autumn seems to be rolling in fast and furious down this way too.

  3. What a lovely selection of presents you had, you lucky girl: I'm sure they'll bring you much joy. Like you I have more Tomatoes than I know what to do with but fortunately they are popular amongst my friends. Sorry to hear your Peppers aren't ripening, perhaps we'll have some late summer sunshine to help them along.

    G x

  4. JO, Happy belated birthday to you. With the new camera, soon there will be lovely photos of garden greens, flowers and harvests. I love to see sherry tomatoes "by the hundreds'. Autumn will set a definite change in your place... leaves going brown and compost machine will chew them up! Ours is a year long hot, humid and wet....

  5. Happy Birthday Jo,
    Yes, you did well. Hope you had fun too. It is turning a little cooler here also. Feels great.

  6. Great gifts - I love practical presents I'm going to curl up with Joy later to get inspiration for what to do next...

  7. Happy belated birthday Jo. Great gifts, especially the camera and the Butterfly & Moths guide. My garden is looking very sad and bedraggled also - time for a good cut back and tidy up, which I actually love doing at the end of the season, ready for the cooler months ahead. Having said that it was a belter here today - 27 degrees!

    Jeanne x

    Oh by the way I forgot to answer your question on my Happisburgh post - the lighthouse is privately owned and yes they do open their doors to the public, but currently only at Easter and August Bank Holiday!

  8. Belated BIrthday greetongs to you.

  9. I have a compost bin in the garden as well as at the allotment, Tanya. When I got my allotment I considered moving the garden one up there, but decided against it, as it's still handy to have one in the garden too.

    Thanks, Kella. The weather has brightened up again here. Perhaps autumn isn't as close as we thought.

    I did get some lovely presents, Georgie. All things I wanted too. I'm going to have a go at making a sauce with my tomatoes. There's far too many for me to eat.

    Thank you, Bangchik. I can't promise fantastic photo's. A camera is only as good as the person who operates it, and I'm rubbish at taking pictures!

    Thanks, Kat. I spent most of my birthday choosing my camera, but that was fun.

    There seems to be many people who have this book, Allot Of Veg. This is one of the reasons why I wanted it. I've had so many recommendations.

    Thank you Jeanne. Yes, it's alot warmer here today too. I'm making the most of it and getting some work done on the allotment.

    Thank you for the birthday greetings, Re.

  10. Hi Jo, a belated HAPPY BIRTHDAY. It looks like you got spoilt and quite right too ! I have a Canon SLR it's a great make so you wont be dissapointed. So can we look forward to lot's of photo's now ?? I have just posted a great chutney recipe that takes lot's of tomatoes if you are stuck with a glut. It's a spicy one though, but you could always cut back on the chillies if you don't want it too hot. x

  11. Thanks, Maureen. I'm not great at taking photo's, but wanted a pocket camera which I could carry around in my bag. My old camera is a Fuji and I love it, but it's just too bulky to carry around. I'll have a look at the chutney recipe. I certainly need something to do with all the tomatoes.

  12. This book by Joy Larkom is the best veg growing book ever! It's like the bible in my house and is now totally battered from so many trips to the plot. Hope you enjoy it as much as we have!

  13. A happy belated birthday to you Jo - hope that your special day was filled with fun and flowers. What lovely presents. The Joy Larcom book is great - mine is muddy from its trips to the allotment :)

  14. I've had a quick look through the book, Liz, and it looks very informative. I know lots of people swear by this book.

    Thank you, Anna. I thought my presents were lovely too. I'm sure it won't be long until my copy is muddy from trips to the allotment.


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