The first tomato

We’ve broken our tomato record at last! We picked our first ripe tomato on the 30th of December. Prior to this our best effort was

What caught us by surprise was that it wasn’t the Pink Thai Egg tomato we were expecting, (still at the blushing pink stage),

Thai pink 30 dec

but an outside runner, cherry tomatoes from seed provided by my cousin. OK it was very tiny but at least it was tasty.

first tomato

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our eggplants are also doing well. We ate our first one last week a Japanese Long White.

white eggplant

Things are really starting to grow quickly. Over the last two weeks the okra ‘Burgundy’ has fruit. You can see the ripening fruit on the left, while the fruit on the right still has it’s papery covering on it.

okra 30dec

 

The corn has also started to put out its male flowers. These are our Golden Bantam sweet corn.

corn flowers

Last but not least TB has harvested a large bunch of oregano. oregano bouquet

As you can see the bunch barely fitted into the oven. We got two large jars of dried herbs from this bunch. The plant will now have a chance to re-grow and provide at least another crop for drying in the future.

oregano oven

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New veg on the block

Each year we like to try growing some new veggies. This year we’ve added kohlrabi and okra to our list. The kohlrabi came to us in the form of excess seedlings from our friend M; the okra we’ve grown from seed.

The kohlrabi is a member of the cabbage family and tastes, well, pretty much like cabbage. Unlike the more familiar members of this family it forms a swollen stem which is the part you eat.

Kohlrabi

This week we’ve cooked it in the juices of a very tasty rabbit stew. We’ve also grated it for coleslaw which is certainly a lot less fiddly than finely slicing cabbage. Of course this plant does have that other characteristic I like so much – its purple and green colour combination!

Speaking of which our purple Sicilian Broccoli has finally come to a head, which is good news given my concerns a month ago with it being eaten by our local possum.

Sicilian_broccoli

While growing broccoli isn’t a new thing for us this is the first time I’ve grown this particular variety. I’m not sure that I’ll be breaking my neck to grow it again. I’m thinking that I get a much greater amount to eat from the same number of purple sprouting broccoli plants as I do from this variety. Oh well, live and learn.

Last but not least we have decided to try and grow okra this year. We made rather a pathetic attempt to grow it several years ago which resulted in one pathetic seedling that could barely hold itself up, let alone produce any pods.

Okra

I’m hoping for better things this time around. We’ve planted two varieties, Clemson’s Spineless and Burgundy. The picture is of a Burgundy seedling. We had a much better strike rate with the Burgundy seedss, but now they are in the ground there doesn’t seem to be much between them. Another experiment to watch and hope for a better result this time around.