Some plants in the garden amaze me with how well they cope in the heat while others, which I expect will cope, sizzle and die. The little coffee tree, which is planted in semi shade and gets heaps of water, is horribly sunburnt and threatening to cark it while the blueberry seems to be coping splendidly.
Speaking of the blueberry I must tell you that, in spite of bearing copious flowers, it set just a single little fruit which I stupidly picked too early for fear that a bird would eat it before I could….I really should have waited as it was green inside and tasted quite sour. On the upside I now know fruit set is possible and if the plant survives the rest of summer I will purchase another with the aim of increasing pollination this year.
The rhubarb is also still alive under shade cloth, although I am watering it every day in order for it to remain so. If I can just keep it going through the summer it should reward us with stems to harvest during the cooler months.
The kale is surviving in the veggie garden but the silver beet seems to be dying of heat exhaustion one by one. I am still picking the odd zucchini and the Lebanese eggplants produced well but have slowed right down now. The Tommy Toe tomatoes are coping well where they are protected and burning where they are not.
I am pretty excited to be picking the first pumpkins I have grown here, and although very small they are otherwise fine and taste great. Last night we went for a picnic at a pool on the river and I took this home-grown roast pumpkin, green bean and cherry tomato salad to go with our fire barbecued lamb chops.
Roast Pumpkin, Green Bean and Tomato Salad
- 600g Butternut pumpkin chunks- oiled, salted and roasted in a single layer at 200 deg C for about 35mins until slightly caramelised. Turn pumpkin over after about 20mins.
- 400g Green beans- blanched for 3-4 mins and then plunged into iced water to cool quickly. Drain well and cut in half.
- 250g Cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 handfuls baby spinach leaves, washed and dried
- crumbled feta or goats cheese to taste - I used about 60g
- 2-3 pinches roasted, ground cumin seeds
- 1 clove garlic, grated
Place all of the above ingredients in a large bowl and gently mix together with your hands.
- a good squeeze of lemon juice
- a generous drizzle of olive oil
- Salt and ground black pepper
|Just waiting for the chops!|