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Fairygirl wrote (see)

I did some toms from seed for the first time this year and was delighted with how easy it was Dove.  

Doh, silly me - should have edited that quote - I was talking about growing Cosmos from seed, not tomatoes - I grew hundreds of tomatoes from seed this year - well, scores anyway. 

I grew lots and lots of heirloom varieties - including Golden Queen, Marianna's Peace, Soldacki, Jaune Flamme and Anna Russian - we've had the best year ever for tomatoes  Fantastic crop - I'm roasting loads in the oven just now, and there may well be some tomato soup happening shortly.  

Of all the varieties we grew this year the absolute favourite is Anna Russian, an amazing Pink Ox heart variety, solid fleshed and with a lovely sweet flavour and beautiful to look at.  My Russian daughter-in-law was ecstatic when I took her a bowlful - my son was forbidden to use them for any recipes, DIL just ate them as they were and smiled beatifically 

Hopefully I'll have some AR seeds again next year 

Lovely word Dove.....beatifically.  Not seen it used in a long time. 

In your post,, read quickly, I thought you said ??ou were "roasting toads in the oven"  

So your favourite cherry tomatoes?? Didn't like Sungold so prob return to gardeners delight or Supersweet


Heather Michaels

Bizzie Lizzie,

My Roma's don't have many seeds either. They are fleshy, but so, so watery but you've given me an idea for what to do with them when the rest of them eventually ripen. If I roast them first to remove a lot of the water they'll very probably make a rather nice tomato sauce. Thanks, Heather x

Verdun wrote (see)

Lovely word Dove.....beatifically.  Not seen it used in a long time. 

In your post,, read quickly, I thought you said ??ou were "roasting toads in the oven" 



That was last week Verdun 


Heather Michaels

Yum! Haven't had toad in the hole for quite some time. Me thinks I might have to remedy that and soon lol Fab yorkshire pudding x



Hi Dove.  Where did you get your Anna Russian seeds?  i can only find them on USA sites.


They were a present - I was very lucky indeed 


Try Premier Seeds Direct on Amazon 


I won't bother again with

samphire- didn't germinate.

cucamelons- tiny sour melon (one) no use for anything.

Yard long bean Metro rouge.- still waiting for them to flower.

runner bean firestorm. Didn't like the red tinge on the pods and not as tender as moonlight.

 Potato lady balfour  -tubers attacked by slugs and hollowed out.

Onion bedfordshire champion- grew well but nothing like the yield of red mammoth or kelsae.

Will grow again-

Sweet corn swift. Lots of cobs of really sweet corn.

 Runner bean moonlight nice tender pods.

Seaweed kale- lots of leaves through the season.

potato Kifli  -good salad potato.

Potato blue danube-really good for roasties.

courgette black forest- good solid courgettes.

Onion kelsae- huge bulbs.

Onion red Mammoth- good  sized sweet bulbs


Agreed, nice idea for a thread - thought I replied yesterday but post went crazy!

My first proper summer in this garden,was quite unfocused and tried all sorts of stuff . Goodish year overall, lots of caterpillar problems once it got warm and they ate everything to some extent - cabbages, kale, chillies and tomatoes all got hit. Anyway...

Runner beans - Enorma, done well after lateish start.

French beans - Purple Teepee grew well and prolific, Speedy ok too. Tried Solano - a yellow type, small and disappointing beans.

Carrots - Nandor, my first proper try at carrots and got some nice ones so growing a later crop in deep pots. Will try more next year.

Cabbages - Greyhound, grew very easily and got some big hearts. Will grow again with some netting etc next year.

Tomatoes - good crop - Sungolds prolific but agree bit too sweet for me and split a lot, Torenzo bush type were prolific and tasty. Ferline - good size fruits. Bought a Shirley and Gardeners Delight late on from GC cheap, and those are still fruiting.

Courgettes - didn't have a good year, hit and miss with several types. Think the weather didn't help. Tried  Black Forest climbers with seeds from GW show but think it was a little late - few nice fruits off those.

Garlic - Albigensian Wight - good little crop, tasty cloves.

Cucumbers - Marketmore outdoor type very good as they were last year. Some good Telegraphs in the greenhouse but got mildewy early.

Chillies - all did okay - Numex Twilight and Oruzco Hot Purple particularly (in greenhouse), and will try to overwinter a couple in a propagator this year and have one at least for indoor pot plant. Each year I grow some from my own dried chillies from the year before, and try a few different types. Friars Hat tried this year - unusual looking and did ok.


Hi Kevin - I grew those Solano beans a few years ago - we liked the flavour, but all the beans were ready to pick at the same time - I spent a whole weekend freezing beans and ramming them into our tiny freezer 

Am going to try Buerre de Roquencourt next year, if I can find space in the garden - I've not grown them before, but they're supposed to have a fantastic flavour 


Dove - cosmos don't need heat to germinate - mine come up fine on a windowsill.  I tried them once with bottom feat and they germinated in 2 days and shot up so quickly that they got too leggy, and i couldn't do anything with them.  Slowly does it seems to produce stronger plants.  And they need to be strong to withstand the "Verdun regime" of pinching the poor things out everytime they put forth a shoot.  Works well though - mine have been better than ever this year.  


Well that's good news Chicky - don't need to buy a heat pad 

I love sungold toms they grow prolifically in my conservatory nom nom. My chillies are fab too - prairie fire - tiny but ferocious and uber easy to grow. 

My spuds were rubbish this year  

I grew cucamelon and lemon cucumber this year - excellent especially the cucamelons - tiny bite size yummy in a salad. The lemon ones need peeled but are tasty too.

I have cape gooseberries in my greenhouse and am waiting to see how they taste. Tomatilloes always grow well even here in Scotland

I grew cerinthe this year too and the buzzies have loved it - collected seeds and it has self seeded.

Calendulas are always amazing too.




Oh forgot to mention that I planted up under our trampoline too. It is a large trampoline and is dead space under it. I planted hostas, lamium, bugle, poppies and sowed annual wildflower  seeds. So far so good The nigella and poppies are flowering and the lamiums seem very happy.


I'm wondering if I've got room for some little pickling cucumbers next year - can anyone recommend any varieties?



Just thought I'd mention that I've had an email from Thomson & Morgan letting me know that the Parador yellow courgettes that were so fantastic for us last year are now in stock, if anyone wants to try them 

I'll be ordering some today!

I think it's too early for me to really say, but I reckon I'll grow everything again next year!

Spinach Emilia F1 has been really easy to grow and produced plenty of leaves, I think the first batch is done, second batch may have been a bit late, not looking very strong yet. Perhaps not the strongest flavour but I have been using as baby leaves.

Radishes - FB3 I have always liked FB and they grew easily to fill the gaps. Last batch has slowed down due to recent weather.

Peas - Hurst Green Shaft have grown fantastically well and are producing loads of pods, but being so late I am worrying about whether the peas will actually fill out so I get to taste them. Unless they taste horrible I will definitely sow these again, but earlier, and with better support (they are twice the height the packet says).

Carrots - May not get a crop (sowed Autumn King and Nantes 5) due to being right at the limit of the sowing season, lots of foliage on AK but not much root. N5 maybe just too late, still not much foliage.

As my first time growing for myself (used to help my dad years ago) I'm pretty pleased with everything, if I don't get to sample some of them it's due to my poor planning and late sowing, nothing has failed, everything is growing, it just might not mature before winter!

On the plus side gardening has finally made me pay attention to the brambles along the east wall an I've had some good pickings off them although the fruit is highly variable. Also finally got round to picking some elderberries off my tree (which is in a far too densely planted patch that I really must get round to sorting out) and tried them in pies - want to try cordial next.

Next year (need to build another raised bed over the winter) I will have Strawberries (Albion), bought a finished plant this year and have been potting runners, enough to fill a bed! Will also have Raspberries (Autumn Bliss) in a pot (half barrel) - it has flowered this year but I planted it at totally the wrong time so don't really expect the fruits to form. I am thinking about more fruit, maybe a blueberry in a half barrel?

Would like to try toms and grapes but not sure they will do well outdoors in Scotland?


Wouldn't bother trying outdoor toms up here Boater. Best undercover. The season's so short and when you get to even early August , the night time temps can really dip so it takes a long time to ripen anything. Think grapes would be the same although I don't know anyone who has them so can't advise on those.

My daughter loves blueberries and I also thought of growing some - probably in a large pot but, if I can create another raised bed somewhere, then in that.

Linda Gruchy

I won't grow "Yard Long Beans" again, at least, not outside. They don't like the cold.

Blueberries are a fantastic fruit to grow.  Think Scotland would be ideal.  

Definitely less annuals...don't grow many anyway....except in a few containers.  And discard some old astilbes and replace with divisions of newer and better ones I now grow.