Potager Y, mid summer 2017

Woohoo… some (delayed) updates of the potager…

DSC_0130a
This pic was actually from early spring (hence the attire), with yours truly feeling happy with the tomatoes…

DSC_0157a
Yes, the tomatoes did quite well, and we made tomato chutney out of the green ones, and shared some of them with our neighbors…

DSC_0064a
The potager was looking pretty and neat…

DSC_0069a
The chard seedling started off well…

DSC_0070a
The companions, lettuce and onions, got along very nicely…

DSC_0062a
So did the Komatsu-na…

DSC_0082a
The purple Malabar spinach is as always, looking somewhat photogenic…

DSCN0436a
Carrots were okay… not too bad…

DSCN0438a
But the cauliflowers were a bit miserable and smallish…

DSCN0448a
The ‘Pom-kan’ orange tasted very nice, and we look forward to seeing a bigger harvest next time…

DSCN1769a
The snap peas, did marvelously well, and gave us lots to eat over a few months…

DSCN1777a
The fava beans did equally well, and luckily, the crows did not come for them…

DSCN1807a
And finally, the Sakura cherries were lovely to look at and to eat…
Again, we were very happy to harvest them before the little birds came…

Advertisements
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Ten years of Potager Y @ Japan

dsc_0031a

We acquired this piece of land in 2007…
It was wild… and I was equipped with just simple garden tools…
Took me months, but I managed to manually clear up the land and carved up the lots…
(See here and here for an account and some pictures of the early days of Potager Y…)
Now, ten years into playing with the earthworms, I finally muster enough ‘courage’ to put up a (hand-written) sign board for the garden…

p1151351a

Grew four broccoli plants last autumn…
All four performed very well…
Next season, definitely going to grow them again…

dsc_0012a

The Japanese folks call this vegetable ‘Naba-na’…
My translation: ‘Vegetable flower’…
This veggie is a new experiment for the potager…
The part that is eaten is the flower bud section…
We pick and pick, and the plants produce and produce…
Lovely veggie… shall be growing them next season too…

dsc_0215a

My ‘sweeto-haato’ first bought this pumpkin from the local farmer’s market years ago…
I liked the taste of it, and kept the seeds…
Am not so sure of the name, but we call them ‘peanut kabocha’ (‘kabocha’ = pumpkin)…
The beauty of this pumpkin is in its ease to grow…
The popular type of pumpkin in Japan is the ‘Ebisu’ pumpkin…
But I find their young leaves are prone to attacks by those little-little yellow bugs…
Not so the peanut kabocha, whose leaves have more spiky hairs (to ward off those bugs?)…
This season, we managed to harvest about 15 of these lovely pumpkins…

p1181382a

Peeled and boiled the peanuts harvested from the potager…
Home-grown peanuts are really something to relish over…

dsc_0003a

This is called the ‘Dai-dai’ orange in Japanese parlance…
Its forte is its acidity, rather thick skin, and firm flesh…
Which makes is a fine candidate for making marmalade…
This plant is for my sweeto-haato…
She is quite fond of making those lovely marmalade with this orange…

dsc_0254a

And finally, a picture of our white ume flowers…
We over-trimmed the plant last autumn, so there will not be too many plums for us to enjoy…

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 10 Comments

2016 season had been good…

The year 2016 had been a good year for Potager Y…
First and foremost, the wild boars did not get to do much damage to the plots and plants…
And, many plants and vegetables grew and produced very well…

pb230565a
The produce that gave me the most happiness was the navel orange…
This year was just crazy…
There were soooo many fruits dangling from the tree…

pb230577a
In my previous post, I blogged about the split oranges…
At the final count, the number of split navel oranges went over 100…
Still, we could harvest over 50 of them…
Each of these fruits weighed about 300 to 400 grams…
There was no way we could consume all of them…
Decided to give to our neighbors and work-mates…

pa052301a
The sweet basil grew fabulously throughout the summer, right up to early winter…
We enjoyed their fresh leaves every morning with our pizza toast…

pa082361a
The peanuts also did very well…
The raccoons did not come for them this year… nice!
I have harvested them some time ago, and drying them in the shade…

pa082371a

pb093551a
For many seasons, I had been struggling with how to grow the bell peppers…
Think I finally got the hang of it…
This year, I had only one plant, and it is still giving us loads of fruits…

pa152876a

pa152878a
This autumn, decided to ‘clean’ up the potager…
Collected some bamboo from the nearby forest to make the boundaries for the plots…
Had been using recycled wood for the boundaries but they rotted fast…
Hope the bamboo can last at least three or four seasons…
They look neat and pretty, don’t you think?

pb213991a

pb214005a
The chayote is the other produce that gave me lots of pleasure…
Tried growing this climber for the first time this year…
And woah… the fruits keep coming and coming…
They are pretty big, and each weigh about 400 to 500 grams…
They taste somewhat like cucumber… crunchy and delicious…
Like the oranges, I had to give away so many to our neighbors and my work colleagues…
And almost all of them were very pleased because this vegetable is not commonly sold in the stores…

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 13 Comments

Late summer, early autumn harvests

dsc_0392a

Part of my day job requires me to make quite a bit of overseas travel, some of which can be rather long…
Upon returning from one of those trips, I found the chestnuts had dropped onto the ground…
Many of them had rotted, or were eaten by bugs…
Collected some that looked ok, at least, visually…
But it was not to be… my sweeto-haato cut them open, and found out that each and every one of them turned out to be bad inside… sad…

dsc_0399a

I did not get to harvest sweet potatoes for the last two seasons of 2014 and 2015…
As above, I had to go for business trips overseas, and each time for the past two years, the wild boars came and ransacked the sweet potatoes…
This year, I was determined to block their advance…
Thank god, we got to harvest the sweet potatoes this time…

dsc_0427a

Garlic is a regular item at our potager…
Luckily, the wild animals have no interest in them…

dsc_0442a

We got to enjoy bitter gourd throughout the summer, and well into early autumn as well…
I cannot imagine our summers without this vegetable…

dsc_0446a

Now, this is another sad story… the navel oranges…
Was really happy to see so many fruits in early summer…
But as the fruits matured, they split, from the navel…
Apparently, the reason is that, the fruits cannot cope well with changes in the water content in the ground, especially if the changes are too much or too rapid…
I collected over 100 split navel oranges, and had to throw them away…
There are perhaps about 20 or so fruits left, and I hope we can get to taste them soon…

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 9 Comments

Unripe strawberries = chutney

Due to the nature of my job, I sometimes have to go for business trips abroad…
Which means, my garden will be left somewhat unattended…

dsc_1349a

Had been struggling for the past few seasons with how to ‘properly’ grow strawberries…
Think I finally got the hang of it…
Come summer 2016, fruits were aplenty…
But just then, that two-week long business trip came in the way…

dsc_1356a

So what to do?
It would be a shame to have the fruits ripening only to be eaten by sow-bugs…
Decided to play around, processing the unripe fruits…

p5070003a

And into the Dutch oven the fruits went in…
Dressed up with some experimental spices, and oh, what a beauty it turned out to be…

p5080006a

Had them stored in glass jars, and into the refrigerator they went…
My ‘sweeto-haato’ and I took our sweet time to slowly relish the final product…

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 11 Comments