Aiming High

Castandel bean plants
Reserve Castandel bean plants

In one of the large beds today I planted some part-grown Castandel beans.  This is a delicious variety of french bean, which has become one of my favourite vegetables.  Some early direct sown plants have been nibbled by something or other so I grew extras in modules and deliberately let them get a good 8 inches/20 cm tall, to better equip them to survive any attacks.  Fingers crossed they’ll be OK as the taste really is worth the effort in this case.

Over-wintered Japanese onions nearly ready
Over-wintered Japanese onions nearly ready

Above, one of the onion patches is looking good now.  These are overwintered Japanese white onions, planted last October and they’re bulking out well.  Some have quite thick necks, which isn’t ideal and can mean they won’t store well. But onions are so ubiquitous in cooking it’ll be a pleasure to use them up promptly.

Alongside, this jungly scene put me in mind of soaring over the top of some prehistoric tree-covered land.

It's a jungle out there ..
It’s a jungle out there ..
A very vigorous potato bed
A very vigorous potato bed

It’s actually my potato bed.  The growth is very vigorous, which is good, but requires a lot of watering to keep the six foot/2 metre square good and moist for the thirsty plants.  It makes sense of course:  the moisture you see when cutting a potato open has to have come from somewhere.

Under cover in the small greenhouse are some chilli plants of the popular Hungarian Hot Wax variety.  When full sized, they’re a pale green colour and do indeed have a waxy look to them.

Young Hot Wax chillies
Young Hot Wax chillies

They’re still small for now and temporarily point upwards. As they grow they turn to point downwards, eventually ending up 4 inches/10cm long and retain a nice kick when cooked.

Two radish varieties
Two radish varieties

Nearby three kinds of radishes are growing.  The black Nero Tondo still have a while to reach their round shape, but there are plenty of these Scarlet Globe and carrot-shaped German Salad ready to pick. I heard recently of people munching them raw, before each bite dipping it in salt. That does sound tasty and I’ll certainly try it.


  1. I’m growing potatoes in the ground for the 1st time this year (usually I grow them in bags). I wasn’t sure what to do about watering. My fellow allotmenteers don’t water them!! Think I’ll start after reading your blog…thank you ☺


    • Thank you! I suspect in allotment ground the roots can get enough water from what there is naturally in the soil, although my trusty Hessayon book advises “water liberally in dry weather – this is most important once the tubers have started to form”. I’m sure your potatoes will be a great success and look forward to reading about them on your blog.

      Liked by 1 person

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