1671. Garden Progress Report

I had written earlier that I might perhaps post the occasional progress report on the state of the garden. So here are a few pictures.

Here is a fabulous Globe Artichoke – one of 32 artichokes grown from seed on the window ledge. The cat kept sitting on them, but they survived. The dog is on patrol. Apart from the artichoke at the back there is Silver Beet (Swiss chard) to the dog’s right and some leeks. Beyond the dog’s tail is rhubarb.

Here is a close up of the same artichoke. Multiply all those flower heads by 32!

We (nearly) always eat artichokes as nibbles. We boil the artichoke head (like a cabbage) and make a sauce (any sauce or mayonnaise). Then we sit around talking about the weather while we nonchalantly break off a petal, dip it in the sauce, and suck out the inside of the petal. When all petals are done we argue about who’s getting how much of the artichoke heart. These days many people throw away the petals because they consider an artichoke is just for the heart. But I think the petals are the best bit!

Here is a picture of the four gardens I dug on the front lawn. Everything is starting to grow beautifully. Apart from sweet peas, dahlias, petunias, and moonflowers, and various herbs, there are turnips, beetroot (I think some countries just call them beets??), celeriac, cape gooseberries, tomatoes, capsicums (bell peppers), leeks, cucumbers, peas, and loads of beans (both climbing and bush). We also have a number of thornless blackberry bushes. Things are bigger than the photo looks! Everything’s just starting to grow and the snails and slugs are loving it!

The grass is growing like billy-O and I spend every second day (when it’s not raining) trying to keep it under control. Here is my lawn!!!!

It would be ok if I had a ride-on but all I’ve got is a crummy old push mower that’s lost one of its wheels, and those back hills can get a bit much (ha ha!!) I have to push the mower while holding it on an even keel. Nonetheless, the lawns get mowed in a cloud of Nitrolingual Spray.

All the stories and music and stuff gets written in the room which is the second window looking to the left of the open garage door! So here is my office and the view out the window.

There’s more to the garden “out the back” but that’s probably enough for one day! We’ll finish with a photo of the dog.

Thanks for reading. You’re all most welcome to pop over for an artichoke nibble or two – and a wine of course!

37 thoughts on “1671. Garden Progress Report

  1. Yvonne

    You have found such a lovely spot this time, I hope you can settle there for a long time. The landlord must be very happy to have you for tenants.

    Your dog is so handsome. Give him a big pat and skritch from me.

    One day, I may drop in for a chat and some artichokes. I will bring some wine to share, and a recipe from Rome for a different way to prepare the artichokes.

    Cheers!

    Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      You gave me the Roman recipe a while back – double fried I think. I still have it but have never tried it yet. This might be the year!

      Reply
  2. observationblogger

    Thanks for sharing these wonderful photos of your piece of paradise. Those rolling green pastures are gorgeous. I also love what you have done with the garden. Oh and people would kill for that office view by the way.
    If I ever get that million share from your lottery win-fall I’ll take you up on that artichoke (petals and all) and wine. We can dream can’t we? Haha. Cheers

    Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      We shall first walk the road between Barichara and Guane – and then come back here for an artichoke petal or two!
      That hill out my window is one of my favourite hills. For a while some kids came with go carts and went up and down and around, and I thought “Don’t tell me”. But they never came back.

      Reply
      1. observationblogger

        Sounds like a great PLAN Bruce!

        Did the kids come with Moto-go karts or just pedal driven?
        Your recollection of that reminded me of the short story by Oscar Wilde called ‘The Selfish Giant’ – I imagine you have read it.

        Oh and I’m not insinuating you are like the Selfish Giant. It’s just a wonderful story – that’s all about kids coming to play jn a giant’s garden .

        Reply
        1. Bruce Post author

          Their go-carts had engines that not only made disgusting tracks on the side of the hill, but made a jet engine taking off sound like a whimper!

          Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      Thanks – the house itself by being in a hole and in the boonies has neither cell-phone coverage nor broadband – I have to do everything by expensive satellite. However it means that the rent is ridiculously cheap for a three bedroom house and I’d rather have that than live in a town (where there are too many people!!)

      Reply
  3. arlingwoman

    That artichoke is HUGE. It looks like the plant from Little Shop of Horrors after it had a lot of blood. Your garden is amazing! And your little ranch looks fabulous. I too hope you can stay there for a long while without unpleasant landlord interference. Nice to see your workspace and piano, too!

    Reply
  4. gwenniesgardenworld

    I learned to eat artichokes when I was living in France. I too liked the leafs best. We dipped the leafs in a vinegar sauce (vinegrette as they say in France) I loved it. Your attichoke plant is amazing !! And since you have 32 of these plants you must have eaten a lot of artichokes this year 😀

    Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      Thanks for your comment. We haven’t started on the artichokes yet! Probably will start eating them next Thursday (American Thanksgiving – which we always celebrate).

      Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      LOL. i.e. LOL in fact! We are having our first artichoke nibble for American Thanksgiving. Although it’s just Spring over here, having lived in the USA we love the celebration of Thanksgiving and have celebrated it for the last 20 years with a turkey, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie etc. All aspects are foreign here – to get a turkey cost us $91 for which I save for all year! – but a celebration is a celebration and American Thanksgiving is a wonderful one!. Hence the “opening” of our artichoke season! Next celebration after that is the Feast of St Nicholas on December 6th in which me and my partner celebrate a common birthday but celebrate this Romanian feast day of St Nicholas with French Onion Soup as we always have. I shall turn 70 and share the same date (unbelievably) with my partner’s son AND my partner. But my partner’s twin brother died on that day and so we don’t “celebrate” it – but we still have Onion Soup – and there’s other reasons but you probably don’t want to hear! Anyway, Chelsea, life is so complicated! All I can wish for is – all the best for coming events! And (if I may add a little serious note) we think we begin to understand each other on these blogs, but never! never! never!

      Reply
  5. umashankar

    Thank you for letting us have a peep in the Land of Bruce Goodman, those magical machines that spew out stories and music, the upcoming garden watched by a very interesting dog. Someday I may just walk in.

    Please share more about life around there.

    Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      You’ll have to sleep on the floor but you’d be very welcome. And you’ll have to take your turn at cooking. All visitors who come to stay (not a great number) sleep on the floor of my office because we don’t have a spare bed!! I would love for you and family to turn up at the doorstep!

      Reply
  6. Andrea Stephenson

    Great view, it’s no wonder your mind is so fertile. And such a verdant garden too – I’ve never seen an artichoke plant, only ever eaten one once in Italy and it wasn’t very pleasant….Your dog is obviously doing a great job of protecting everything!

    Reply
    1. Bruce Post author

      We had our first artichoke last night – and it was the size of a basketball! We had trouble finding a pot to cook it in! You would think with parts of England being just across the channel from the artichoke-growing region of France that growing them would be common??

      Reply
      1. Andrea Stephenson

        I wouldn’t say eating them is common let alone growing them, but maybe people are eating artichokes all over the place and I just didn’t get the memo 🙂 I suspect artichoke would have been considered a food for posh people!

        Reply

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