We grew peas when I was a kid, but gave them up as a massive hassle in my early teens. Over half a century later, I’ve just discovered “Tom Thumb” – what took me so long? It dates from the 1850s! It grows to 9 inches high, so no wretched pea-sticks or netting. Young pods can be eaten whole (though it’s more of a snap pea than a sugar pea), so no more laborious shelling of peas out of pods. It’s just coming into flower (photo shows an unwanted passenger …). And, for comparison, I also sowed some “purple snow pea”, which are the row behind the “Tom Thumb”
Last night was my first full picking of lettuce, which I had with a cheddar&chive omelette and oven fries. I always sow lettuce thickly (early crops have to start under a bell cloche), and harvest the first few meals by pulling up whole plants to make space for the rest to grow! The variety is “Marvel of the Four Seasons”, a rather floppy lettuce but extremely reliable here.
Also last night, the first flower on geranium versicolour (the Pencilled Geranium) opened after the showers in the afternoon.
A facebook post by Worcester Green Party from a couple of days ago. And Courgette! Well, nearly … it’s about half the size of a matchstick at the moment. I was taken by surprise, as previous courgettes I’ve grown have had a couple of weeks of male (non-courgette-bearing) flowerbuds before there’s any sign of the female (courgette-bearing) ones, but there’s no mistaking this. The variety is “Soleil”, a yellow bush variety that I haven’t grown before.
Madame A. Meilland (probably better known as “Peace”) opening this morning. She does pretty well, considering that in my north-facing front garden she only gets about an hour of late-evening sun a day!
A glorious sunny morning, and the damselflies are out in force. There have been the odd one or two over the past few days, but this morning I counted six of them!
Typha minima – the “Baby Bullrush” has reached its full height of about 60cm in my pond, and is starting into flower. The yellowy-green male flowers at the top will fade and blow away in due course, while the brown female inflorescence forms the familiar bullrush seed mass.
Sadly, the two red damselflies were disturbed by the camera and refused to stay in shot!
Geranium sangineum (“Bloody cranesbill”) open today. A favourite plant, which unlike some other cranesbills doesn’t spread everywhere, but makes a nice mound with flushes of flowers from May to October, followed by glorious scarlet leaves.
My “wildflower bank” is only about 2 metres x half a metre, but manages a good assortment of flowers. The first buttercup has opened, a brassy glare in the morning sunshine and almost impossible to photograph as the petals are so brightly reflective!
And, as I posted to the Allotment & Garden group, “How’s everyone doing for bees this year? I’ve seen very few, even on the rosemary (now over) and thyme (in full bloom). The mining bees have just started making nests in the cracks in the concrete path, but there’s little sign of other bee activity here …. hopefully, when the ceanothus opens next week I’ll see more of them.”
Vile weather this morning was not good for arthritis! It’s drying out now, and I managed a painful and soggy hobble round the garden, to discover that the first of the irises have come out. One of my favourite flowers!
Lily of the Valley. A root taken from my Mum’s in 2018, which flowered in 2019 and 2020, but there was no sign of it last year! Glad to see it again.