Saturday, 18 September 2010

Mooning Sunflower

All of our tomato plants are keeling over from blight. I got away with it last year, but not this time. Perhaps we were too greedy with a dozen different varieties growing, so we had a total of 24 plants on the go. There are sprays you can use, but although not overly fussy about the food I buy from shops, I do try not to spray the food I'm growing myself with chemicals. Ignorance is bliss, in other words.

Some tomatoes ripened before the blight struck or are ones that we've caught early when plants were only just beginning to keel over. These have been placed in a fruit bowl packed with bananas, the ethylene gas from the bananas helping our toms to ripen. Though we do need to keep a close eye on these, as some do rot thanks to the dastardly blight.

But we've too many to save, so the remainder are being made into green tomato chutney. We've cooked up about 6 kilos so far, using 3 different recipes. I reckon I need to cut down the remainder of the plants tomorrow, and think we'll salvage another 4 or so kilos for yet more chutney.

Tomatoes. Looked forward to them all summer. Got very excited about the first pickings, and enjoyed the first few plates made up of lots of varieties. But now I'm bored of them already (oops - did I say that out loud?). I really wanted to eat them back in the height of summer, with leafy salads. Now the weather is starting to cool, I'm eyeing up all the comfort foods. Hey ho. Guess I need a greenhouse so I can start them off earlier in the year.

I've also been roasting the last of the sumer squashes & marrows, and cooking them up with some minced lamb & bechamel sauce & making them up into lasagnes stored in the freezer, to take to work for lunch. And we're still picking runner & borlotti beans a couple of times a week - most of these are bagged up in the freezer to eat later this winter.

I've just got to share with you a picture of the most amazing sunflower that's on the route into the allotment site, so it cheerfully greets all arrivees. It's a mutant double-headed sunflower. Now, just what does that remind you of?


  1. what! bored of tomatoes? never! still, at least you will enjoy the chutney come winter..the sunflower reminds me of an alien with sunglasses....good to read your posts again....

  2. Just starting to get the first signs of blight on my outdoor toms, most have ripened already and are now pasta sauce in the freezer. The greenhouse ones are still going strong though. We still have green tomato chutney from last years early blight attack!

  3. So, should we expect a homemade hamper of home produced goodies for Christmas?! (That wasn't a hint btw; honest.)

  4. Hi There and thanks for visiting my blog. You have done amazingly well for your first year, I know how you feel about tomatoes though. I thought your oven dried tomatoes sounded like a great idea, I am going to try it.