The potager shed

The potager shed

Hi.

Welcome to my blog. This is just my personal garden and food diary. I’m a flexitarian, vegetarian at home, but more flexible when with friends. I’m trying to grow our own food so we leave a lighter footprint on this precious planet.

Over the past six years I have been transforming a one acre former vineyard on a steep hill into a garden. There are distinct areas; an 80m2 vegetable garden, a small orchard, a pond and a sunken path flanked by two long mixed borders.

We are in a small hamlet near Faugères in the Occitanie (formerly Languedoc) region of France. Our soil is rocky schist. Summer temperatures can reach 40℃ and in winter sink as low as -10℃. Water comes rarely but is diluvial when it does.

Lizzie

Frazzled

Frazzled

Ali & I have just taken a brief four day break in Genoa which is just a six hour drive along the south coast of France, then a wiggle around the Ligurian coastline. Our timing could not have been better for us. Our area of France endured the hottest temperatures ever recorded at around 45℃. In Genoa the mercury didn’t rise above 34℃ and our apartment was deliciously cool.

However, our dogs both hate the heat and they are still in kennels until tomorrow when the kennel re-opens. At least the kennels are well shaded and up in the hills so I’m hoping they are OK.

The same can’t be said for the vegetable garden. Despite my saintly nephew coming in to water the vegetables on the hottest day, some plants look, well, dead. The sun and desiccating wind simply grilled them, so no amount of water would have saved them. Worst off was the trombone squash which grows around 30cm a day, so it is relatively tender. I think I’ll be able to save two but one of them has completely had it.

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However, all this pales into insignificance when I see that local winemakers are reporting up to 50% loss of their vines due to the extreme heat. As if they didn’t have enough to deal with already.

Use what you have....

Use what you have....

Intense blackcurrant jelly

Intense blackcurrant jelly