Happy Summer Solstice

The 21st June – summer solstice. A cool, cloudy day here in Western Ireland, more reminiscent of early May. Still I often think of this day as half way through the year and with each year time seems to fly.

The new flower garden is progressing but I think will take a couple of years to fill out – still we are enjoying the first of the lupins and one or two delphiniums. I’m cheating by just giving some closeups as the overall effect is still far off.

It’s been a busy few days in the vegetable garden. Nearly all the brassicas are planted out now – cauliflowers, cabbages, spouting and perennial broccoli. We’ve covered most with netting to discourage the white butterflies, though amazingly you can still watch them try and get their way though the netting.

Brassicas under netting

Brassicas under netting

The first squash I planted out did not fair well due to cold temperatures and slug damage – so these have been replace and surround by a circle of crushed egg-shells and an organic shop-bought slug gel that is supposed to deter the wee beasties. So far so good. I have surrounded some of the brassicas with the same ‘fairy circles’ as I am calling them. In the photo below you can see some pebbles that my four year old daughter decided to add for good measure.

Fairy ring of egg shells

Fairy ring of egg shells

In the greenhouse tomatoes and cucumbers are all planted out but slow enough to get going. In the polytunnel the early Charlotte potatoes are awaiting harvesting while the outside ones are growing slowly and still being earthed up. We’re enjoying the first broad beans from the tunnel and they are flowering outside . We’ve had a couple of courgettes from the plant in the greenhouse, while the ones in the tunnel and outside are still small. The greenhouse one has also benefited from a big helping of compost!

The runner beans are out too and could do with a rest from this year’s relentless cold wind. Still they are growing as are the mangetout. We’re harvesting those in the polytunnel and the first are just appearing outside too.

Runner beans

Runner beans

Wishing you all a good solstice, and productive and happy gardening.

 

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22 thoughts on “Happy Summer Solstice

  1. rainbowjunkiecorner

    Looks like you have a wonderful garden in the making. I have used eggshells to deter slugs and found them succesful at least with some things. But I spread them much more thickly right up to the plant and don’t leave any pathways for slugs to get in.

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    1. Murtagh's Meadow Post author

      Yes, I did notice a pathway in the photo!! – must check on the ground. Interesting that you’ve done it right up to plant – I shall have to experiment. Thanks for tip.

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  2. aranislandgirl

    I love delphinium and tried growing it but no luck two years in a row. Even followed the instructions to put seeds in the fridge for a week before sowing. Perhaps I will buy seedlings next year instead.
    Should I expect my sage to flower every year? This is the first year in five that it has and I was quite surprised, looks exactly like yours, so pretty!
    We waited before netting our brassicas and the cauli and broccoli were eaten by birds. So mad at ourselves–three dozen plants gone in a day. Had to be birds right? We didn’t actually see them, but can’t imagine any other pest doing that kind of damage in such a short time. I will be posting pics of the devastation in a few days with a garden update. Otherwise garden life is good!
    I’ve been blowing the clouds away from your direction. Hope sun is peaking through πŸ˜‰

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    1. Murtagh's Meadow Post author

      My sage flowers each year – I’ll cut it back shortly after flowering now sure if that helps. Bees love it. Could it have been pigeons that eat brassicas? We used to have real problem with them in the UK. Here they have only gone for green manure seed we put out (so far!)

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  3. Jane

    Beautiful flowers & interesting to see how your vegetables fare in & out of the greenhouse. I delayed picking the damsons last year and all was stripped by the birds (crows, jackdaws?) when we got home..
    That’ll teach me.

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    1. Murtagh's Meadow Post author

      Two years ago birds – probably magpies – stripped our still unripe plums! So yes definitely worth picking when you can or trying deterrents such as hanging old CDs from the tree.

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  4. Melissa Shaw-Smith

    I’m salivating at the thought of all the wonderful feasting you’re going to be doing out of your garden this year. Hope the wind dies down a bit, and the temperature warms up for you. Lovely flower pics too!

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    1. Murtagh's Meadow Post author

      I know the garden wont be as productive as last year but then any home grown vegetables (and fruit for that matter) is worth it! I hope all is growing well in your garden too.

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  5. Robbie

    I chatted with my daughter in Sweden on this day:-) We don’t celebrate it here in the USA, but I learned from them that they do in Sweden. Your flowers look so beautiful. We had had so much rain that the bugs are out and somethings are having problems that normally don’t and others are doing fine. It seems like that ever year. I would not trade all our rain for the drought they have in other places of the world. My issues were ants and slugs this year!

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    1. Murtagh's Meadow Post author

      Ah slugs! They can do a lot of damage. They are a constant issue here with us! As for ants I have one nest in the veg plot but they don’t bother us or the plants unless we disturb them:)

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