Tuesday, September 23, 2014

A little rain goes a long way.

At last we have had a little rain, overnight and during the day we had a fall of 5.5 ml of rain, it doesn't sound much but it added one hundred and twenty litres to each of our water tanks, this gives us a further five days of water to bring us back to where we were before last night. I have managed to catch up with all of the washing which is great. Most people take the water that comes out of their taps for granted and so much water is wasted, when you depend on rain water you don't waste a drop. We have now ordered another four one thousand litre containers to collect the rain water from the barn roof doubling our storage capacity, this will assure us of a supply for two months and it is unheard of not to have rain in Ireland for that length of time.
Yesterdays harvest.
The tomatoes continue to produce at an alarming rate, we have had around forty pounds so far, most has been processed into soup and frozen, and a few pounds given to friends. it certainly has been the year of plenty, so many cucumbers , courgettes, runner beans peas and French beans, we have given away far more than we have used ourselves. We have even had a nice crop of sweet corn, now all frozen. Physalis, (cape gooseberry) are now ripening, normally we would not be picking them until late October through to December, and the strawberries are now giving us a second crop.
It would be nice if our fruit trees produce as well as everything else does, we had lots of lovely peaches and  we did have a nice crop of Victoria plums, but only three Damsons, one Bramley apple,
A perfect Russet, wish we had a tree full.
           three Russet apples
and one other eater, it was nice but we have lost the tag so don't know what variety it was. The birds got the cherries before we had a chance to net the trees. Maybe we will do better next year.
The key hole garden is now in it's second year, it is incredible how well and how much food can be produced from such a small area, just four m2.
Plenty to eat here.
This year it is full of Swede, Turnip, Spinach and Chard,
                           and a rich compost .
Key hole gardens would certainly be the solution for people with very small gardens who want to grow some of their own food, it's no wonder that these have been so successful in parts of Africa.
Not only do they look good, they are easy to work and very productive.
Last year I was admiring a spectacular flower in a friends tunnel, she kindly gave me some seeds which I planted in pots, they are now in full bloom. Cocks Comb, Amaranth.
For something so unusual I was surprised how easy they were to grow, I will certainly collect seed again this year for a real splash of colour next year.
Top of the world for Misty again.
Misty has become a full blown tight rope walker, anywhere that there are curtains she skims up them to investigate the top of the room, Freddy just looks on not at all impressed by his sisters'  antics.
Tortoiseshell butterfly sunning it's self.


  1. I am so glad you got some rain even though it was a little and you are so right when we turn on the faucet we don't even think about it. We are lucky in my area we have plenty of water while some places in the states are so dry.
    Your gardens look wonderful.
    You and I are both busy getting things put by.
    My best to you

  2. We decided to go for rain water harvesting as the water from the mains is rubbish, plus it has fluoride added weather you want it or not. For many months there has been 'Boiled Water' notices on the local water supplies, which means you cant use it for anything other than bathing and they expect you to pay for this!.

  3. Thankful it rained for you - we have had little here but last monday we had 106L in one day - much needed. Great looking toms. Such a busy time of year for us growers but worth every bit of time spent.

  4. I love going into a food store and needing nothing other than dairy and paper goods, it leaves so much money to spend on plants!

  5. So glad to hear you have had some rain, what a relief! what a bumper harvest! Shame about the fruit trees but maybe next year. That flower is so unusual and so pretty! The key hole garden looks fab, I would love to have one in my garden (future garden!)

  6. Cocks Comb is in fact edible, I think you have to wait for the seeds to ripen that is what you eat, beauty and food!