For me, visiting your plot after some time away is always very exciting.
During the Summer, everything can grow very fast, and seeing the difference just a week or so can make never fails to invigorate me.
We got back at dusk last night, giving me the chance to wander down to the end of the garden and see what had been going on.
Before we went away, I posted 6 things I was hoping for on my return from holiday. I overlooked the mangetout, thinking that was a good couple of weeks away from a crop. It was therefore a very pleasant surprise to see not only lots of the crunchy green veg on the plants but a healthy first harvest waiting in the fridge too (thanks mum).
Mum had picked 140g of mangetout over the last few days, so a useful 90p saving was quickly added to my GYO money saving spreadsheet. Already I’m feeling vindicated in my decision to take a year off peas and just grow the heavier cropping mangetout.
No such joy on the strawberries front, however. I’m getting very jealous of all the bright red strawbs posted up on Twitter and Instagram, as there is not a ripe fruit to be seen in my beds yet.
The good news is that there are more strawberries on my plants than I’ve ever seen before, but despite a good 5 minutes of rummaging through them all, there wasn’t a fruit even close to being ready. The wait goes on.
Planting Out Leeks and Tomatoes, and Mind the Spikey Bits, Lewis…
The gooseberries are still not ripe either, but more of a concern was Lewis running past them naked this afternoon. They’re very spikey those gooseberry bushes…
Whilst trying to make sure my infant son avoided any lasting damage to delicate areas, I set about planting out my tomatoes and leeks. They’ve grown large enough to go out, so the tomatoes went in using the same method as the one I use for squashes, and the leeks were planted as per my homemade dibber technique.
Curly kale and cavolo nero also went into the beds, so fingers crossed that the slugs don’t feast on them overnight (I had a bag of stones and shells to put down around the plants, but Lewis threw the whole lot on to the lawn…). They’re still very active and helped themselves to a fairly large squash plant whilst we were away.
Post-Holiday Plot Inspiration
So, all in all, a very satisfying afternoon. Most of my seedlings are planted out, and everything is beginning to take shape. Holidays are wonderful – they’re great experiences and chances to make long-lasting memories, but also incredibly effective for inspiring you to get back in the thick of things.
I’ve had a truly brilliant week away, but now I’m back I’ve never felt as excited about my plot as I do now.
Thanks, Italy, you were a blast.