I'm writing this in the evening of 30th August so I think it's fair to say that I can mention the 'A' word in polite company. As has been previously discussed on here, I always enjoy Autumn, (although come to think of it, the only time of year I don't like is the dead, grey cold of January and February) but this year, I'm looking forward to it more than ever.
A visit to the allotment brought home to me how I've managed to unwittingly plant crops that come to fruition fairly late in the year. Since the broad beans finished I've been existing on a diet of rainbow chard and courgettes from the allotment but waiting in the wings for their Autumn colours are are the eagerly awaited crown jewels of the plot. The recent rain has been a massive boost, quietly fattening the sweetcorn and borlotti beans as well as pushing the cavolo nero skyward so we're teetering on the edge of a full blown Autumnal glut - I can barely contain myself!
We cut our first pumpkins today, the biggest was 6 kilos, which has given the kitchen a pleasing harvest festival vibe. There are another half dozen monsters waiting on the plot so if anyone has any pumpkin storing tips, I'd be pleased to hear them.
The runner beans are also experiencing a renaissance. I read Alys Fowler in The Guardian on Saturday with interest, it makes sense that the reason they didn't set earlier in the summer was the hot weather we had. They're obviously loving the cooler, wetter weather and are beginning to drip with beans which is a mixed blessing, their newly verdant leaves are a sight to behold but how the hell did I manage to forget they taste so vile? Even Adam, aka the human dustbin, refused to eat them today. I had been planning on cosseting them through to a second season as Alys suggests but I don't think I'll bother ....