shooting stars

The sky was quite clear last night, and just before eleven o’ clock we caught a glimpse of a shooting star, bright, brief and beautiful, part of the August astronomical firework display known as the Perseids. These meteors are debris from the comet Swift Tuttle and when they hit the Earth’s atmosphere at approximately 140,000mph they disintegrate in flashes of light. Wonderful to catch a glimpse of them.

No photograph I’m afraid, but I did glimpse these botanical shooting stars at the local National Trust garden yesterday.

The planting here was still looking fresh despite the long dry summer, but this last few days we have had enough rain to make the grass grow again, and at home I have sown some vegetable seeds for the autumn. The ground should soon be workable again. I have put in late sowings of rocket and lettuce, as well as mizuna and pak choi. This afternoon I will plant some Japanese onion seeds to produce small plants to overwinter, and some French beans to see if I can catch a late crop.

It has been a challenging season-when isn’t it?-but on the whole reasonably successful. The drier weather has meant fewer blights, but slightly smaller yields of potatoes. The onions have done well, the celeriac failed and ran to seed.  Unwatered carrots, beetroot and parsnips are flavourful but less succulent than they might be. But the pumpkins! HUGE! The first season I have succeeded. There will be pictures, and a catch up with the no-dig experiment. How has your growing season been?

I hope to be a bit more present here in the next few weeks as the weather changes, but it surely has been a glorious summer.


5 thoughts on “shooting stars

  1. I’m not as prolific as you , but tomatoes, courgettes, and french beans have done famously, alongside baby beets and carrots, and our star, a chili pepper! I missed the Perseids, despite making a note, too many other issues going on sadly. Cold and wet today – more like November, brrrr.

    1. Sounds like you have had plenty of good produce too Jules. I think the weather will come good again-and we did need the rain, so fingers crossed for next week.

  2. One or two lowpoints (don’t talk about onions and garlic!) but mainly highs. My first sweetcorn and summer cabbage for example, with first pumpkin and celery to come. The beans have romped away and the potatoes have been pretty good too. Courgettes and squash have been prolific, and loads of chillies, peppers and aubergines in the greenhouse. Pretty good all things considered although I’m lucky to grow in the garden so watering is easier than if I had to travel to an allotment.

    1. Hi and welcome Damien-my garlic was pretty disappointing too! I shall treat myself to new sets this year instead of using saved ones-mine were really badly hit by rust. I’m glad your garden has been so productive-it is so much easier looking after produce you can see regularly rather than the remotely grown stuff.

  3. Hi Judith,

    I was about to pull our parsnips – apparently one of our few vegetable successes – now I’ll lower my expectations.

    My garlic was ok, but onions non-existent. And they were from sets! I suspect rain is the key variable in my case.

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