I have not been able to make the veg beds outside this year which has been frustrating. I need to calm down and it will be better, overall, if I do them this autumn so I can prepare the soil and it will be better for the plants next spring. Better than rushing.
But rushing was what happened in the poly tunnel with new raised beds being dug and filled and then planted within days. It is not ideal but was necessary. There are still beds to make down one side but I got some plants in. Dwarf French beans have been very productive and the climbing beans are getting close to cropping. Three courgette plants have done us proud and the peach tree is establishing.
The fig has figs on and the perpetual-flowering carnations, though rather neglected in their early lives, have been blooming away. Of course, all the rush to get beds done was for the tomatoes.
Pride of place, as ever, goes to ‘Sungold’ which has already produced masses of ripe tomatoes, as sweet as you could want.
‘Sweet Aperitif’ has a different flavour profile but is just as sweet and very prolific with seemingly endlessly branching trusses.
‘Midnight Snack’ is one of the new ‘black’ tomatoes, packed with anthocyanins, and starting to ripen – but not always easy to see. The fruits only become ‘black’ if they get direct sun. I am not overly impressed with the flavour, a problem with all of this kind I think, but they are not awful. The trouble is that compared with ‘Sungold’ almost everything else seems second rate.
‘Gourmandia’ is an F1 beefsteak type. The seeds were breathtakingly expensive. But I think the cost was worth it because, not only are the plants cropping well, and the toms are tasty, I have been picking big, ripe fruits for two weeks. Having beefsteaks this early in an unheated polytunnel (plants were raised in heat) is quite something.
I have a few other toms too this year; ‘Orange Zinger’, ‘Tomatoberry Garden’, ‘Brandyboy’ and ‘Santonio’.