So, it’s become autumn since I last wrote anything. The tomatoes in the tunnel suddenly got a spurt on in September and we’ve had loads. I’ve got quite a collection of jarred (canned) tomato products, ketchup, chopped tomatoes, passata, puree, soup and chutney. They’re still coming as well, as in still going ripe, so I am not giving up on them just yet. I’ll give them another couple of weeks to ripen, then they’re coming in whether they’re green or not. I’ve got a recipe for salsa verde which I’m going to try with some green ones (I’ve never tried it before).
A few celery plants are still going (they’re massive actually), so I’ve had J chopping them up this afternoon, he’s really good with a knife and I’ve frozen a tub full to use in soups/stews. The runner beans are starting to die off and the beans are drying on the plants as planned, which I will then store for cooking and planting next year. Outside, we’ve got a load of leeks which will probably stay in place over the winter and some cabbage/purple sprouting broccoli, a couple of swedes, some sprout plants and a bit of kale. I planted a load of garlic in the empty beds the other week, which will hopefully grow for harvesting next year.
It’s been interesting this year, because I’ve been experimenting with what will grow outdoors here, and it’s all actually done better than I thought it would. All the brassicas are fine, celery worked well, potatoes, onions, herbs and beans all seemed to work well (mainly in raised beds). I’ve already ordered most of the seeds for next year and I’m going to have a few different varieties of tomatoes. The only plants that didn’t do brilliantly this year, were the gherkin and cucumber plants, but I didn’t give them enough space. I’ll give them proper space to grow and air next year. If you’re not careful with managing the tunnel, as in with airflow, it starts to go damp and mould grows. We usually leave a door or window open all the way through the summer.
I’m hoping to put the ducks (four of) in the tunnel in the next few weeks, for the winter. The fox has been taking an interest again and we’ve currently got an injured one in the bathroom. I don’t know for certain, but I think the fox tried to get her through the fence. She’s hurt her leg, she has a bath every day for physio and a bit of freedom, otherwise I’m limiting her movement as it heals. Her appetite’s improving, so hopefully she’ll be ok. She’s getting very ‘quacky’ whenever there’s any noise from us, haha. It’s slightly strange having a duck in the bathroom when you’re having a bath, but you get used to it.
We’ve put all the chickens in their winter quarters again, there’s also a broody in a pen with three new chicks. I put them in there yesterday. I don’t have to yet, there aren’t restrictions in the Republic yet in relation to bird flu, but it has been so wet that the ground is awful around the shed, boggy and muddy. So I’ve locked them in for the time being. It’s fairly large, they’ve got enough room. They’ve also all more or less stopped laying at the moment, so egg selling has stopped temporarily. I guess they need a break! The magpies and crows have been bothering them all this year too, as in eating the food and stealing eggs, so we’re going to have to do something about them for next year.
I haven’t written much recently, because it would have been pretty much of a muchness. So hello! In other news, we’ve had our ninth wedding anniversary, praise God! To put a cliche – time really has flown! We’ll also have lived in Ireland for four years in December too. Such a lot has happened really quickly over the last decade. God is most definitely the one who keeps us and sustains us. I’m very glad I know Him and can trust Him no matter what.
Goodbye, farewell, auf wiedersehen, adieu!
2 thoughts on “Autumn.”
Hi Cathy and family, Wow, you certainly have done well with all your vegetables. Wish I could say I have been as equally successful but still trialling new things in our garden – don’t have a lot of room so planning on trying something called “square gardening” in a raised bed next year.Love hearing about what’s happening in your lives – can’t believe how time has flown and how long you have been in Ireland already. It really doesn’t seem like 4 years, but then again, when you post pictures of your handsome boys – you can see how much they have grown.Anyway, just thought I would drop you a quick line and let you know I often think of you.All the best and God BlessIris
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Thanks Iris. It definitely has been a process of trial and error here too 🙂 It’s good to know we’re thought of and I can’t quite believe it’s nearly 4 years either. I think about you lot a lot. Thanks so much for your card, it was really, really good to get it. Love to you and Selina x