We have been enjoying the fruits of our labour the past few weeks! Last night we had a lovely meal and the only thing that didn’t come from our garden was the cold chicken!
In the spring, we purchased a small raised vegetable bed and excitedly filled it with beetroot, carrot and green bean seeds. I am amazed by how productive it has been. We also had an old water-butt that had a leak in it so we cut that in half and hey-presto we had some fantastic containers for our potatoes. They tasted amazing and the children had great fun digging for them. Just look how pleased they are with their crop!
Lily and Thomas are now expert pea shellers! If you haven’t tried this with children you really should give it a go. It keeps them amazingly quiet! I couldn’t think of any songs about peas but we managed to make up a few funny ones of our own whilst we were doing this. Lily LOVED eating the peas raw straight from their shells and it really took me back to my childhood when I used to sit at my grannys table helping her to shell the peas.
We’ve also been growing Tomatoes in grow bags and Courgettes and Peas in pots. Despite the growing season being very wet for us here in Devon, everything has done really well and we will definitely be growing our own next year. I think the most successful thing for us was the runner beans. We planted these in a half barrel that we picked up at the garden centre a few years back. We lined it with an old compost bag before planting so that it would retain some of the moisture and it worked really well. We were picking runner beans non stop for about a week before growth started to slow down.
The one thing we didn’t have much luck with was Strawberries. I think this was just due to the amount of rain that we had, they were all mushy inside and very watery.
If you are growing beetroot this year you might want to try this little recipe which I cooked up the other night! It is really yummy and I found it a great way to use up green beans and beetroot (which we seem to have a glut of at the moment!)
Beetroot and Green Beans with Garlic.
Boil your green beans for around 7 minutes.
Heat some olive oil in a pan and add the green beans and your (pre-boiled) beetroot.
Add a clove or two of fresh garlic and some salt and pepper.
Fry for about 5 minutes tossing the garlic and vegetables around and making sure the garlic does not burn.
Serve it hot or cold, it is very tasty either way!
Have you been growing fruit and vegetables this year? Do you have any tips for container vegetable growing?