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What a summer


Well, this hasn’t been our best summer in the garden. Last year we grew so many courgettes and tomatoes (and even some marrows, when we left the courgettes for a holiday). That inspired us to really go at it this year and plant loads of stuff.

But we planted later than we should have done, and the summer never properly came. And we had white fly and caterpillars all over everything in a way we’ve never had before (perhaps because of the rain and lack of real sunshine).

So to get a few meals’ worth of parsnips and a single courgette was something of a triumph, albeit poor compensation for all the work we put in. We’ve got some green tomatoes on our window-sill too, which we are hoping will go red sooner than go mouldy (we’re winning with 2 of them, and we lost one). I should add that we have sweetcorn still growing, which we’re optimistic about.

Has anyone else had such a poor return this year, or were we just unlucky?

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Hi Sean,
Sorry to see and read of such a poor result after much hard work. Good luck for next year when, hopefully, we will have a good summer.
I started growing veg again this year after many years absence due to work etc.
Spuds blighted but got a few pounds worth of good ones. Toms no good, only got a few off six plants. Beetroot OK but didn't plant enough. Carrotts just wouldn't germinate. Onions brilliant. (Have put some more in to over winter.) Leeks coming on strong. Cabbage doing well. (Wonderful taste.) Sweetcorn quite good, but I think I picked them a little too early. The tassles were brownish but I was told by an allotmenteer friend of mine that they weren't brown enough. Good luck with yours.
Oh! and spinach is fantastic. It just keeps coming back no matter how hard we pick it.
Have ordered some blight resistant spuds for next year. They are of the Spiro family.

11 Oct, 2007


A hint for ripening green tomatoes - put them in a drawer (or some other closed container) with one red one (or failing that a banana!) The ripe fruit gives off a chemical that triggers unripe ones to ripen and an enclosed space, rather than a windowsill, is a better place for the process to take place

11 Oct, 2007


bad year here too, potatoe blight, tomatoes all blighted, carrotts rubbish, runner beans great, courgettes rubbish, cucumber [outdoor] again rubbish, broccalli holding on, spring greens seem to be growing, garlic so so, all in all a rotten year

12 Oct, 2007


Thanks for your support, everyone. As someone who's relatively new to gardening, it's good to hear that I wasn't doing anything terribly wrong and that we're all suffering together. Although I'd obviously prefer that we were all succeeding together.

Thanks for the tips on tomatoes in the drawer. I'll give it a go.

12 Oct, 2007


Thank goodness that someone else had as bad a year as me. My first season growing vegs. and virtually all a disaster!! Good to know I am not alone and will therefore persevere next year!!

27 Oct, 2007

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