Friday, June 27, 2014

Pumpkins & Courgettes



A short post, we have had much needed rain for the past two days and the sun has come back out this evening. A visit to the plot was on the cards, while it was raining lightly when I went out , by the time I came home the sun was shining from a clear blue sky.
 The Courgette and salad bed is becoming a jungle as the plants jostle for space, the inter planted lettuce has come on as much as the lettuce planted in the polytunnel.
There are 5 courgette plants but so far this yellow one is the only one bearing fruit. This one is Parador F1, recommended as probably the best yellow courgette available, high yielding with a nutty flavour. Its a first for us so not sure how large they will grow or even how large to allow them to grow?
 The green courgettes plants are reliable Defender but no fruit or even flowers to report as yet despite the hot weather!
We have a Pumpkin patch! These 4 are Rouge Vif d'Etampes.Bright orange skin and can grow up to 10kgs and can be used for soups, pies etc, even the seeds can be toasted and eaten. They  were growing in pots but were about 4 foot long and needed their space. We didn't have a fully cultivated spot for them or wouldn't for another week or so by which time they would huge and cramped in the pots.
 This evening I removed the square of plastic which has been covering this ground for a number of weeks, the skutch grass had died off  and I was able to pull it up quite easily but the roots are another matter. I cleared the surface vegetation and covered the ground with bags of Bord na Mona farmyard manure. I dug quite deep holes and added the Celtic Gold soil enricher as they are very hungry plants. It was easier to plant them this large as I could see which direction they were growing in and was able to plant them with the trailing stem going the way I wanted them to grow, the stems are about 4 foot long at the moment!
Baby Pumpkin at the base of the flower, each plant has at least one of these.We will have to decide how big to let the plants grow and how many pumpkins to allow grow to full size, quality or quantity?! It may all be decided for us by the weather,the  slugs and all the other predators and pests!
 Lots of pumpkins have been brought home from schools in tiny pots and I wonder how many of them will make it to October? They are sitting on kitchen windowsills drying up in the heat!
 Pumpkins are big plants and will need space to grow as they romp through the flowerbeds!
They need watering and repotting as they grow very fast under the right conditions.My rule of thumb is ,when  the roots are visible through the end of the pot it is time to repot meaning a larger size pot with fresh compost without disturbing the rootball .These were in large 12 ins pots before planting out today.
 It will be an interesting experiment to see how they grow where the skutch grass is bound to come through soon, or will they keep it down if they are strong enough plants?!
Watch this space!

3 comments:

Jo said...

Hi Peggy! It's so good to see you online again! How have you been. I almost missed this post as my blog didn't scroll down further than one post on my dashboard. Then it righted itself, thank goodness. Great to read your post again. Keep well. Jo

PeggyR said...

Everything looks pretty healthy. We've had tons of rain and storms and more Tuesday. Right now we are almost 90!

Ann said...

An interesting experiment, maybe the shade from the pumpkins will stop that grass being such a pest.