For Christmas I got a small diary which I have been using to record the produce I have grown myself. It’s been both interesting and pleasing to note the results, especially as even at this time of year it has averaged out at 2+ items a day. That is better than the height of summer two years ago, so I am clearly doing something right.
Anyway, what have I been eating? Well, in first place is garlic. The cloves didn’t grow very big last year, perhaps because the spring was so late in getting started. But I’ve still got quite a few heads, which I hope will see us into the summer.
Then, thanks to what was left on the allotment when I took over, there were a few big bags of potatoes and leeks. In fact, I could possibly have been eating potatoes from here this weekend, as I came across a handful or two whilst digging on Saturday. I decided against it, though, and these have gone in the municipal garden waste bin.
One vegetable which has done me proud for three years now is the purple sprouting broccoli. Not sure if that is coming to an end but there are cabbages aplenty, even after giving a number of them away. Looks like I will need to freeze what’s left as they are starting to bolt, but that’s good news for the flowers I plan to put in their place.
I can’t seem to get a second crop of chillies, no matter how hard I try, but at least I got a first at the beginning of the year. And I have certainly had plenty of other crops to flavour and garnish: spring onions, fennel, parsley, bay leaves and cress.
I’ve also had green beans, broad beans and tomatoes from the freezer – as well as green tomato chutney, which sadly is nearly finished now. Then last but not least, there have been plenty of leaves for salad: beetroot, chard, lettuce, spinach and rocket.
So, what next? Hopefully, I will be able to continue in the same vein in the next three months, hunger gap or no.
© Helen Butt, March 2014