September calendar 2015

potimarons and patipans

potimarons and patipans

As the picture shows the squash have been picked and are awaiting many risottos, stews and curries.

The garden is slowing down now with some beds already empty with all the squash, courgettes and potatoes picked and stored. Still available are leeks, kale and borlotti beans, with fennel and cauliflowers available next month. Not sure if the fennel are frost hardy, so I may lose those if we get an early frost.

We also have a last flush of flowers with the asters being particularly good this year after we divided them from just two plants last year.

The garden is also full of dodgy looking mushrooms. I’m clueless on fungi identification so unless a local expert tells me they are edible, they are staying put!


August Calendar 2015

Hybrid pattipan squash

Hybrid pattipan squash

August has followed on from July with less hot weather, but still a couple of spells of 30C+, one of which we are in at the present.

Bit too hot to do anything after midday!

The picture of the squash above is a mystery as it should look like the picture below.

sunburst pattypan

sunburst pattypan

I think it’s been planted too close to some potimarron squash and a bit of hybridisation has occurred.

Lots of beetroot available now, which we normally make into soup to have chilled on these hot days.



Plenty of courgettes and leeks are also available, though generally the garden still looks a bit scorched from the heat. We have only had one apple make it through to the end of summer, so we are monitoring it daily.

Flowers below all grown from seed provided by Ben over at the Higgledy Garden. If you don’t buy your flower seeds from him you should give him a try.

elderberry cordial, from bush to mug


We have made cordial!

Originally posted on la petite maison bijoux:


We have a large elderberry bush in the garden, and we’ve been watching it closely for the past couple of weeks. The berries have been formed for a while now, and it’s a fine balance between them being ripe enough to pick, and birds stripping the bush. Yesterday we decided it was time to harvest.

We got a good haul from the lower branches, but we did leave plenty higher up for the birds. Our plan was to make elderberry cordial, but in the event we got enough to make some jam too. Those have gone into the freezer for another day.

We follow a recipe from James Wong’s book Grow Your Own Drugs. He recommends taking a spoonful to ward off winter coughs and colds, but we prefer to dilute it it with hot water and drink it by the mugful. It’s a bit like hot Ribena, but with…

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pom poms and ice cream


Trying to escape the heat…

Originally posted on la petite maison bijoux:

The square at La Chaise Dieu The square at La Chaise Dieu

It was another very warm afternoon yesterday, so we decided to take a trip out to La Chaise Dieu. It’s at a higher altitude than our house, and often seems to catch the breeze. It also has a magnificent, and very cool, abbey, and a patisserie that sells wonderful ice creams, so it’s a good choice on a hot day.

I’m always vaguely surprised when it’s busy, as we’ve often been there and found tumbleweed blowing down the streets. It’s another one of those places that only really comes alive in July and August, and there are even craft shops that just open for those two months each year.  I’m not sure what the pom-poms on the fountain signify (if anything).

And here it is; the all-important ice cream.

I chose raspberry and this one is myrtille, which I would call bilberry, but I think most people would…

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