This is the journal of my endeavours to grow a range of fruit, veg and flowers from seed, grow organically, and my attempts to create a personal paradise with 1/2 acre of maintained gardens and 1/2 acre wild meadows. Northern Ireland's average daily high temperatures are 18 °C (64 °F) in July and 6 °C (43 °F) in January. Soil type: Clay

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Veg Progress (Eggplant, Bean, Courgette, Tomato)

June seems to to have brought lots of rain and gray skies! Some plants put outside in early June (pumpkins, butternut squash and courgettes) have suffered. Some cucurbits I've delayed planting or have put into pots positioned closer to the house for protection from the windy conditions.

Left: Aubergine / eggplant are slowing growing. Sown indoor from seed sown 8 April 2012. I plan to grow these in the conservatory throughout Summer (along with tomatoes).

Above: Growing aubergine / eggplant I've discovered the plants are developing little prickly spikes!
My 2nd year growing tomatoes and I've grown two types:
Tomato (Red Cherry). Sown indoor 8 April 2012.
Tomato 'Gardener's Delight'. Sown indoor 8 April 2012. 
My dilemma with beans - when are they ready to eat? I picked some and ate them, ready or not.
Bean 'Dwarf Purple Queen'. Sown indoor 8 April 2012; planted outside early June.The other beans are either 'Cobra' or 'Scarlet Emperor' - I've lost track!
Above: Courgette 'All Green Bush', Sown 8 April 2012 indoor; planted outside in early June.
Canes have been placed around the plant to protect it from wind damage.
Above: Squash 'Patty Pan'. Sown indoor 8 April 2012; planted outside into a container 17 June 2012.
Is that blossom rot developing on the first squash??
Potatoes in grow bags seem to be doing well. These are either 'Maris Peer' or 'Pentland Javelin' - I forgot to look at the tag.  As usual the potatoes planted in the ground are suffering from slugs and snails.

Copyright: All words and photos are property of Kelli's Northern Ireland Garden.


  1. Everything is looking great! The beans look ready to me! Enjoy your garden and I hope you get a little less rain and a little more sun.

  2. I have never grown courgettes etc. successfully in containers but yours look as though they are doing ok so far. I usually eat my beans slightly younger - they soon get tough if left too long. Did you enjoy them?

  3. June has been a wet one for us in oregon too. Despite that, your plants are coming along nicely!!

  4. Kelli the green beans are definitely Cobra (which is a climbing French bean), not Scarlet Emperor (which is a Runner, producing flat pods).

    The Patty Pan squash looks OK. The brown bit on the tip of the fruit looks as if it is just the remains of the flower, dying off as normal. I have one of those plants too, and it is looking the most promising of all the cucurbits I have planted this year.

  5. We pick the beans as soon as they look anything like big enough whilst still tender - like Elaine we tend to pick then a little sooner than yours. It's more a case of picking earlier rather than later when they become tough

  6. It's all looking good. I can't believe you're picking beans already, my plants have been a flop so far with slug damage. I'm hoping that I can get some growing successfully before it's too late.

  7. Have you grown egg plant before? I grow it every year, mostly because I think that it is beautiful in the garden. I give most of them away to faculty friends at school. They love them. And yes, they do have awful thorns, dangerous thorns. Your garden veggies look so healthy and good. As I have said, our garden got pounded by hail, but it seems to be coming out of it now. In a few more weeks the hail damage will be grown out. I do like the Purple Queen. Never have eaten a purple green bean. Thank you always for your kind and regular comments, Kellie.

  8. Hi Kelli, everything is looking good. I never knew eggplant plant produced tiny spikes. your courgette does not look like it has blossom end rot to me.

  9. Wow....I love the potatoes in the bag idea. Most definitely will try this. I am constantly amazed at you talents in the garden!
    Thanks for posting on my little blog.

  10. Hi Kelli, I've got to try this potato bag method. I didn't realize that eggplants had spikes. hm, that is interesting! I am quite jealous of your success with starting tomatoes from seed. My attempts are about 6" high. I need a green house. Cheers, Jenni

  11. Hi Kelli,
    My name is Lee Henry and I work as Web Editor for I'm very interested in your blog, and wonder if you fancy writing a piece for us? Please contact me on
    Many thanks,