Green Magpie

Latest posts by Green Magpie

Aldi Raspberry canes

Posted: 28/02/2017 at 18:02

Autumn Bliss are a well established autumn fruiting variety. Get them in the ground now, with some compost and perhaps a bit of feed such as blood, fish and bone. The will need to be well watered in, but nature will probably arrange that! They shouldn't need much in the way of support, and I haven't found that the birds bother with them much.

You may get a bit of fruit off them later this year, but next year should be better. Typically, they start to produce small amounts of fruit in about August and carry on fruiting well into October. Rather than giving a glut like the summer varieties, they tend to give a small but steady supply for many weeks.

Then you leave the canes in place until early next spring, when you cut them all down and new ones should grow.

I have no idea how healthy and strong Aldi's plants will be, but you might as well give them a go!

Charlotte Potatoes

Posted: 01/02/2017 at 22:38

I have mine set out now, but find that in practice they don't chit much. They just sit there for a couple of months, and I will plant them (without waiting for chits)  in late March as long as the frosts seem to be over. 

Funny, isn't it, my supermarket potatoes in the kitchen have only been there about a week and are sprouting already, but my Charlotte seed potatoes will mostly still be as smooth as eggs in a couple of months!

Carrot Issues

Posted: 04/09/2016 at 13:08

They do indeed, and I bet they taste great too.

Tomato blight

Posted: 18/08/2016 at 20:34

Thanks for the recommendation. I have had no blight so far on my Sungold, which just don't seem to get much blight, and Losetto, which are bligh resistant. I am bringing in pounds a day now, and every meal has to include tomatoes. I may add Crimson Crush to my next year's plan.

How to grow your own Thai curry ingredients and cut down on food miles

Posted: 24/07/2016 at 18:26

Where do you get the seeds for Vietnamese coriander?

Chillies seem to work for me in alternate years - which is just as well, as I still have a bag of them in the freezer from the sunner before last!

Mint leaves

Posted: 24/07/2016 at 16:00

Mint and parsley stirred into couscous, to serve with spicy stews.

How to grow your own Thai curry ingredients and cut down on food miles

Posted: 24/07/2016 at 15:56

I've got some lemongrass growing well in a pot. A.couple of months ago I bought a pack of fresh (well, not very fresh really) lemongrass stalks, and put three of them in water for a week or so. When roots appeared, I put the plants into a pot of compost. I will try to keep it indoors in winter, but for now it's thriving in a sunny spot in the garden.

Coriander grows well and you can collect the seeds to use as a spice or to grow another crop.

What to do with a blackcurrant glut?

Posted: 19/07/2016 at 13:31

Ah yes, if you buy a plain "New York" type cheesecake, and serve it with a compote of blackcurrants, it's much more fresh and zingy than those jammy-topped cheesecakes you can buy.

What to do with a blackcurrant glut?

Posted: 19/07/2016 at 08:04

The liqueur I made was with vodka, but I'm sure white rum would work just as well. Use similar quantities and method to sloe gin or other fruit liqueurs.

What to do with a blackcurrant glut?

Posted: 18/07/2016 at 11:13

I make jam and cordial, and freeze some. The  frozen ones can be used to liven up puddings like apple crumble, and I love a handful in a fruit salad, to give it a bit of a kick.

I tried making blackcurrant wine, but it was too acidic, not good. A liqueur was more successful: blackcurrants steeped in vodka and sugar, to make a drink similar to Kir.

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