The free produce table is looking a bit lighter than it usually does at this time of the year, but there are some fruits and vegetables that have survived the slugs and the ants.
The berries are looking great. The redcurrants are the first to be picked, but we reckon by next week we’ll also have gooseberries and blackcurrants to give away. These are two fruits that we always produce in abundance, so if anyone likes making jam or anything else that involves large quantities of gooseberries and blackcurrants please come down to the garden and pick some.
The first of the garlic came up this week. This has been one of our most popular crops the past couple of years, and it always goes quick. We staged the garlic this year, to make sure the season lasts longer and more people get to try it.
The rhubarb, as always, is still going strong. We’ve still got lots of rocket as well. I’ve been eating it in salads all week and it is really tasty. I’ve planted some other different varieties of salad leaves, so hopefully they will survive the slugs ready for when the rocket does all go.
Even in spite of black fly (which we’ve been fighting with warm soapy water), the broad beans and doing great. I’ve also been throwing these into my salad raw and they taste amazing! They’re also a really handy snack when I’m walking around the garden. As with the garlic, we also staged the broad beans this year so they will be available for a good few weeks.
We’re hoping the first early potatoes will be ready soon, which I am very excited about. The shallots and onions also look like the only crops to have come through the critter war completely unscathed, I can’t wait to see what they’re like when we pull them up.
Strangely, the cabbages are looking really good at the moment. I say strangely because, in previous years when the harvest has been much better, the one thing we have been unable to grow successfully is cabbage. This year, not much else is growing but they are thriving. We can only assume that the invasion of slugs and snails has meant fewer caterpillars.
On the subject of the slugs, and the fact they seem to be ruling in the garden this year, we have a new theory that maybe there are fewer frogs in the neighbourhood this year to eat the slugs. There has been a lot of building work going on locally, and with it a reduction in the number of ponds and wet areas. Seeing as we are building a rain garden anyway, Martin is now incorporating some small ponds into the design. Hopefully the frogs will find them attractive and decide to move in. If not, I’ll be on the look out for some frog spawn.
As always, if anyone would like to come along and visit us Saturdays 10am – 2pm you will be more than welcome. We are always on the look out for new volunteers. It’s not just digging and planting that needs to be done, we have lots of construction projects in the pipeline and events to plan. For more information contact us via our facebook page Plasnewydd Community Garden.