Monday, August 24, 2015

Do You Have a Green Thumb? by Helen Scott Taylor

Hubby and I have tried to grow different sorts of vegetables over the years and we’ve come to the conclusion that neither of us has the gift! The veg fairies do not like us, or most of them don’t.

My husband is great with all other aspects of the garden. We have a thriving wildlife meadow area, a beautiful woodland full of bird boxes that always house nesting birds each spring, a pond full of water lilies and fish and many healthy shrubs and flowers. But the veg patch is not a huge success.

In the UK, one of the staple plants in every vegetable garden is runner beans. Instead of the healthy climbers that most people grow, ours turn into sad spindly plants with few beans—and to be honest the beans aren’t very nice either. Too stringy. But that might be because I picked them late.

We do have some successes, though. Courgettes as we call them or zucchini to you in the US, are always a success. This year we’ve also grown patty pan squash, and they have thrived as well, giving us lots of flying saucer shaped summer squash—enough that we have them for just about every meal!

We are also growing winter squash, and they seem to be coming along okay, although the jury is still out on them. Peas are usually a success and so are the tomatoes we have in our greenhouse.

To be fair to us, this year the weather has been terrible in the UK. A cold spring that held everything back gave way to a wet, dreary summer. Even our friends who are a whiz at growing vegetables have had less success this year.

What about you? Do you grow vegetables? What are favorite things to grow?

Helen lives in South West England near Plymouth in Devon between the windswept expanse of Dartmoor and the rocky Atlantic coast. As well as her wonderful, long-suffering husband, she shares her home with a Westie and a burmilla cat. Helen's latest project is a boxed set called Christmas Pets and Kisses, full of wonderful stories about love and pets. Her book in the boxed set is Golden Christmas. Find Helen on FaceBook and Twitter, or visit her website.

Golden Christmas 

Two wounded hearts are brought together at Christmas by a trusty golden Labrador and an adorable golden retriever puppy.
Every Christmas Vicky hides so she doesn’t have to celebrate the date she lost her husband and son. She doesn’t want to see anyone but when she finds a dog’s lost ball she meets Jon, a wounded ex-soldier who’s struggling with his own problems. This brave man touches Vicky’s shattered heart and makes her realize she can’t hide forever. With his support, can she find the strength to love again? 

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  1. Oh, Helen, I hear you! It sounds like you've had some success with squash and a couple of other things. I can't grow anything. Everything I try simply withers and dies. Whatever the trick is to having a green thumb, I don't know it.

  2. I used to grow peppers, peas, tomatoes and squash (I probably shouldn't count my peach and apple trees). Now I'm just down to tomatoes. But this year (a drought), I haven't had one tomato yet. Grrrr

  3. Between the drought and my natural inability to water often enough, I gave up trying to grow anything but a rosemary plant that is thriving.

  4. I used to have a green thumb, but since we moved to AZ, everything dies. I either water too much or not enough.