Thursday, 20 August 2009


Not only the name of one of my favourite vegetarian/vegan cafes in Dublin city, but also the glorious scene we arrived to at plot 103 last weekend. Our broccoli, cauliflowers, more beans, peas and another courgette were ready for harvest!

Our chard bright lights was looking delightfully colourful and I really hope it tastes as good as it looks!

I'm not quite sure but I think we may have the first pumpkins showing a hint they they are going to turn up on plot 103 for halloween.

However celebrations weren't to begin just yet. We had a look at our potato bed and in the space of a week all the plants had deteriorated drastically with confirmed blight. Once it strikes unfortunately theres not much you can do but try and prevent the blight spreading to the tubers in the ground and rotting the potatoes. So we cut down the foliage to ground level, earthed the mounds up and I dug up 2 of the plants to see if there was any hope of salvaging some spuds. The roosters are small but thankfully no sign of blight in most so we'll leave them in the ground for another week and then just harvest what we can of them. Unfortunately with the foliage cut back there is no possibility of the spuds getting any bigger so the best we can hope for is baby roosters. It would seem that most peoples potatoes on the allotments succumbed to blight including William the allotment guru who generously gave us a rather large bag of his spuds, british queens. (Thanks William, they were very tasty!!)

Overall not a bad haul at all though up in plot 103. This is the beautiful table full of food we managed to harvest and provided us with plenty of veg for the week. The broccoli and cauliflower went into a very tasty broccoli and cauliflower gratin and tasted absolutely fantastic. For the first time we discovered just how cauliflower is supposed to taste and it was surprisingly different from the shops, not quite so bitter and much sweeter. The heads are small but his is probably due to the lack of manure in the soil this year and can be fixed for next season. I loved it before but now!!! I'm an addict!

Finally I had plenty of opportunities to continue my rehabilitation programme to eliminate my fear of butterflies. The plot was crawling in them!!! There are so many up there now we are very glad we put nets over our brassicas, but even so one or two still managed to get in as we found a couple of stray caterpillars in the broccoli (thankfully before I cooked them!!) theres nothing worse than enjoying the wonderful taste of home grown food only to look down on your plate and see half a caterpillar!! So heres a picture of one of the butterflies sunning itself on one of our marigolds around the pea and bean bed. I have to say, with so many butterfies flitting about I have definately begun to run slightly less, I didn't really have much choice, if I ran away from one of the fluttering monsters I ended up running into another 2 of them dancing in the air so in the end I just gave up running and closed my eyes momentarily instead. I think my rehab plan is working!!!


  1. Hi Sharon, your first year on the plot is providing bounty!Everything looks strong and healthy and the taste goes without saying.This is the first year we have had caulis and like you were amazed at the difference in taste to shop bought ones, they were one veg which I did not think could differ greatly from what I had been buying as 'fresh' previously.Blight came on most of our spuds almost over night too.Well you win lose some.. but at least we did not lose all of them, like you we have cut down the stalks but left them about a foot over ground to mark where they were.

  2. Thanks Peggy, the more I read about everyone getting blight, the more I'm beginning to think its not possible to grow spuds without spraying, so we may have to make do with being 'mostly' organic. I've heard that bordeaux mix is soon to come off the approved for organic use list and there are some doubts about it so we'll go organic for everything else but will I think next year have to hit the dithane or copper fungicide. Our leeks unfortunately have also been a bit of a failure, still to small to transplant and its getting too late now. But we've still plenty of everything else.

  3. A cornucopia of vegetables. So true.

    Like Peggy says ' you win some, you lose some, but at least we did not lose them all'. Your caulis are especially gorgeous looking.

    If I should ever venture towards Dublin, I will sure visit this restaurant.

  4. Thanks Mangocheeks,

    Its a great restaurant/cafe, I used to spend far too much time in there back in the days when I was vegetarian, I'm not veggie anymore but I'd prefer a nice meal in cornucopia over most restaurants, and the portions are HUGE!!! you definately leave with a full belly! We've a big glut of cauliflower at the moment so looks like we'll be eating aloo gobi and cauliflower cheese for the next couple of weeks.