Saturday, 18 July 2009

Wiggly Wigglers!!

We got some new pets!!.....well, actually about 1000 of them.... My Can 'o' Worms composter arrived today so we set about getting it set up and getting our new tiger worms settled into their new home. I haven't named them all yet but we're getting there. From now on, hopefully these guys will eat all of our kitchen waste, contributing to our green revolution, and turn all the veg peelings, egg shells and any other organic waste into lovely nutrient rich worm castings and compost for the plants. It will also provide us with 'worm tea' as any of the liquid that leaches out from the composting process provide a nutrient rich liquid plant feed which is apparently great for vegetables.

Lady Isabella Harveys nose, however, seemed a little out of joint now that she is no longer the only pet in the apartment. After running around like a lunatic looking for attention, she finally decided to sit in one of the tiers of the wormery and look at us as if to say ' look, I can compost too, If you want worms, I could be one!!'

The time had come to try our chateau 103 elderflower champagne!! It had been fermenting away in the bottles for the last 2 weeks, thankfully without any explosions, so we popped open a bottle last night and it was deliciously fizzy and and delightfully sweet. Definately a success which we will be doing again next year.
Our courgettes are in full bloom but only male flowers so far. Apparently this is quite common, the plant first produces a flush of male flowers and follows with the fruit baring female flowers. The flowers are apparently quite delicious stuffed and deep fried in batter, something I'll definately be trying over the next couple of weeks.
Or peas and beans are both setting their first pods so hopefully over the next couple of weeks we can begin harvesting them.
The carrots are starting to look like carrots and now when we thin them we are benifiting from some tastey morsels just big enough to eat sprinkled whole in a chicken salad and todays thinnings were absolutely gorgeous. Such a strong flavour for such a little pre-baby carrot, I can't wait till they get bigger.
One of our cabbages unfortunately looks like it has black rot. Black rot is a Brassica disease caused by a bacterial infection of the plant. Apparently it can be carried by the seed or picked up from the ground. There is no cure and no prevention. It starts with 'v' shaped yellowing in between the leaf veins, after a while the veins begin to blacken and growth in mature plants is stunted and seedlings can be killed. As the disease seemed to have just started I pulled off the affected leaves in the hope that the disease may not spread to the rest of the plant. All other cabbages, and brassicas look so far unaffected but I'll be keeping an eye out. Apparently the disease is quite prevalent in warm wet summers, which we've certainly had over the last month or so.


  1. Oh its all looking so good. Baby baby carrots.

    Congrats on the success of your elderflower champagne. Although our recipes were different, it shows that both recipes work well. Like you, I wil be making it again.

    I want a wormy compost bin. Its on my birthday list, christmas present list and even on my 'go on treat yourself to a present list'.

  2. Thanks mangocheeks, I'm looking forward to tweeking the recipe next year and seeing how it works out. The wormery was a 'go on treat yourself' present to myself. The worms are very curious, caught one or two of them trying to make a break for freedom this evening, but its raining here and apparently if its going to rain the worms tend to come up to the lid just like they do in the soil to prevent themeselves drowning. I really should tell them they are on a fully sheltered balcony and won't be rained on! so we got a free weather forcaster in our wormery