Tuesday 5 July 2011

Delicious Strawberries

I love this time of year when the strawberries are producing well. We've got another great harvest this year, in fact, I'm going to have my first go at making jam. I never got round to planting out all the plants we took from runners last year, nor the everbearers which we bought at the back end of last year and potted up. They're all producing, though they're still stuck in their pots. I'll make sure they get planted out at the end of summer or beginning of autumn so that they can get established before winter sets in. I'll also pull out all the old plants from the strawberry bed at the allotment, they won't do much in the way of fruiting next year.

I didn't get any jobs done at the allotment at the weekend, though I did go down there to harvest some strawberries and mange tout. We spent some time sowing seeds for winter crops, spring greens, purple sprouting broccoli, kale and chard, as well as sowing some more stumpy round carrots in a container and some more spring onions. I'm hoping there'll be enough time left for them to grow.

I emptied out another of my potato containers yesterday. There aren't as many potatoes in the containers as I've had in the past from other varieties, though the potatoes are bigger on the whole. I will definitely grow this variety, Arran Pilot, again though, they're absolutely delicious, nicer than any I've grown before. They stay firm when boiled and have a wonderful tasting pure white flesh. I've been eating them with butter and mint. Heaven.


  1. Again you're almost mirroring our activities. We are only getting small strawberries from our old beds which will be dug up soon but the new plants are growing really well and producing lovely fruit.

    We have six everbearing strawberries - Finesse - planted in a trough in the garden as well as the new bed on the plot.

  2. We are really looking forward to eating our own potatoes too.

    They are currently flowering, so it won't be long now.

    Enjoy those delicious strawberries!

    Martin :)

  3. I've had a good year for potatoes too. Mine are mostly First Earlies sold as "Baby New Potatoes Collection". They have been very clean and even this year - almost no scabbing at all.
    Broad Beans are in full production now,and are probably better than ever. Isn't it nice when the garden involves harvesting instead of sowing and planting?

  4. I've heard good things about Arran Pilot and definitely one I'm going to try next year. Just eating our way through the Charlotte at the moment, love freshly dug spuds!

  5. Enjoy your potatoes! I'm envious as I didn't grow any this year - to make way for sugar snap and pumpkin - but I've really been missing eating my own spuds.

  6. AnonymousJuly 06, 2011

    Those strawberries look good!
    I'm going to try Arran Pilot potatoes next year as I keep reading how good people think that they are. Flighty xx

  7. Ditto to Flighty's comment. It's really nice to hear recommendations about different varieties as there's a huge choice. My personal current faves are Charlotte and Vivaldi (the one I buy from the shops in the winter!). Lovely strawbs, hope your jam making went well.

  8. Dear Jo, Your strawberries look jummy! I am sure they will make wonderful jam. Mine finished producing a while back - but were delicious, and I made several pies. P. x

  9. Strawberry Jam...Mmmm! You can keep fresh strawberries, just let me at the jam ;) Hope it turns out good.
    It's great to be harvesting, isn't it? I'm behind with my sowing, thanks for the rminder.

  10. AnonymousJuly 08, 2011

    Hi Jo,
    Nice to see you getting the delicious rewards of all your hard work. My strawberries are doing well too but the raspberries are a bit small this year.
    I hadn't heard of everbearers, I'll have to look for those, assume they dont't need replacing like ordinary strawbs.
    It's always good to get recommendations especially from someone else in the north, so thanks will try the Arran Pilots.

  11. It's funny how our activities often run along the same lines, Sue. It will be fun to see what else is mirrored.

    I was surprised at the harvest we got from our potatoes, Martin, as they had been growing for such a short time and I lifted them without them flowering. I hope yours do well for you.

    This is what all the hard work is for, Mark. I'm always excited at the start of a new year and can't wait to start sowing seeds, but nothing can beat harvesting everything.

    I will definitely be growing Arran Pilot again next year, Damo. I enjoy trying new potatoes and tomatoes, but I think I've found the one I'll be sticking with now.

    I've grown my early potatoes in containers this year, Surburban Veg Gardener, so that I've got more room at the allotment for other things. It's a shame when you're short on space and have to sacrifice one crop for the sake of another, but I'm sure you'll enjoy your sugar snap and pumpkin.

    I don't think you'll be disappointed with Arran Pilot, Flighty. I've finally found a potato which I'm going to stick with.

    I haven't done any jam making yet, Caro, but I'll let you know how it goes when I do. I've never tried Vivaldi, but grew Charlottes two years ago. I liked them but not as much as Arran Pilot. I think it's a case of trying different ones until you find a favourite as one person's opinion will be different from another's.

    I don't think you can find a strawberry in the shops which taste as good as home grown, Pam. I'm looking forward to making some in to jam.

    I love this time of year when you start to harvest everything, Mo. It's great to come home from the allotment with my basket overflowing with goodies. I've never made jam before so I'm hoping it goes ok.

    I'm sure your strawberries are more than making up for the small raspberries, Bluebell. I'm sure they're still tasty though, they say that good things come in small packages. Everbearers do still need replacing, but they produce their strawberries over a longer period. We should be picking strawberries from these long after the others have finished fruiting.

  12. Those strawberries look lovely. I didn't get many from my plants but it was their first year so fingers crossed for next year. We need to pull our potatoes this weekend too. I just stumbled upon your blog and thought I'd stop by and say 'hello' :) x

  13. My strawberries here in Boston have not turned red yet. But, your's look fantastic.


  14. I need to find a decent spot for growing strawberries again. Last year I grew some in pots, but the chickens pecked them all!

  15. Your strawberries look delicious. Your crops always look so healthy! Always enjoy your updates. Kelli

  16. Thank you for visiting, Bibbitybob. Fruit sometimes needs a year to get going, so you should get a better harvest from your strawberries next year. I had my best harvest from my plants in their second year.

    Thanks for paying me a visit, Victoria. My strawberries are coming to an end now, but you have all yours to look forward to. I hope you enjoy them as much as I've enjoyed mine.

    You need to find somewhere away from the chickens for them, Mark. I wouldn't want to share my strawberries with chickens.

    Thanks, Kelli. There aren't many strawberries left now so I hope the everbearers I invested in at the end of last year carry on producing for a while longer.

  17. All our strawberries are about finished now...and yet still I am not fed up with them and seeing your photo made my mouth water.

    Glad you enjoyed your potatoes...I find most people like this variety.....funny thing is, I really wasn't one of them.

  18. The strawberries at the allotment are just about finished now too, Tanya. I've got some everbearers which are in pots in the garden, and they're still producing, in fact, I noticed lots more flowers on them yesterday, so there should still be plenty to come. I want to get them in the allotment at the end of the season. It's funny how our tastes differ, what one person likes, another doesn't. That's why it's important to try things yourself rather than taking someone elses recommendation.


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