One tomato, two tomato, three tomato… and some maples

My husband was a little underwhelmed by his first sight of lunch today.

We love tomatoes and I thought with the new greenhouse we would have a splendid crop of homegrown ones. Sadly, all the ones I started in the greenhouse have not fared well after being transferred to the vegetable plot. The blazing heat, our sandy soil and my erratic watering and feeding (though I tried) have not been to their liking, so every kind of rot has set in and this is all that is left.


And they’re not as healthy as they look. The one plant I kept in the greenhouse is looking much happier, so next year I will fill the greenhouse with them.


However my little nursery bed of seedling maples has come through the summer in brave force and I think there are some interesting plants here.


I was a little alarmed to see that the parent of most of these, Matsukaze, is already showing some Autumn colour. I don’t understand where the summer went or how the year is slipping past so swiftly.


At least the birds and the hedgehogs are flourishing. Outside my writing room window very new half-coloured robins, bluetits, great tits and coal tits and, I think, a willow warbler (who resists the efforts of the paparazzi ) all flit about constantly (very good for concentration) while the ground is patrolled by pigeons, dunnocks and blackbirds (one with a grey head). We hear the hedgehogs at night and they polish off a plate of mealworms etc every night. I am torn between my desk and the outside, but the seasons won’t wait, so I must try and get out more.



17 thoughts on “One tomato, two tomato, three tomato… and some maples

  1. I think that would serve my diet well. I’m sure with a little more trial and error next years crop will be a bumper one. I can’t wait for Autumn as it means bearable temperatures again. We had a Chiffchaff in HK at the start of the year – it caused a big twitch. Very odd feeling indeed.

      • I think we are in the mid to high 30sC today. No respite. By 7am it is already too hot for much outdoors. If you listen to the song of the chaffinch it is like a fast bowler running in and then a short stutter at the end before he delivers the ball. Instantly recognisable.

  2. I agree, you’ll have time to enjoy your green desk once the winter settles in. Sorry to hear about tomatoes, but I am sure your greenhouse will yield bountifully next year.

  3. If it’s any consolation, Hilary, I’m still earning my green thumb. Tomato crop was really bad this year (probably not all attributable to my skill, or lack thereof, at gardening!); many of them split, I think due to the roller-coaster of heat, then rain, then heat, then rain that we’ve had over the last month or so. The melons have split, too, and I don’t know if I’ve done something wrong, but I will read up on all this before next year. So, we got a few raspberries, strawberries, a good helping of table grapes, some tomatoes and jalapenos here and there, and one cantaloupe. It was kind of a lousy yield for all the work and water that went into it, but I resolve to learn from my mistakes! I already know I planted the tomatoes and peppers too close together. I shall plant them farther apart next time! Anyway, love the photos, and wish you successful gardening, despite that first photo.

    • Tomatoes, it seems, are for advanced veg growers. They appear to be the fussiest veg on the planet and yet they grow happily all over Italy, so why do they object so much to heat and drought? Melons and grapes? you are making me ambitious. I, too, plan to do much better next year, that’s the fun of gardening, you get another season and another go.

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