Archive for June, 2010

Veggie plot update: 30th June

I was just watering the crops  and have noticed that most of the plants are starting to bear fruit. What a great bonus to spot all of these on the same afternoon.

First sugar-snaps of 2010

…first Tom

…first Runner Bean

…first courgette (actually that’s a fib, there’s about five emerging now)

Found this fella tucked behind one of the leaves. I’d be concerned about the shape and ‘bumps’ on this cucumber if it wasn’t for growing them last year and seeing that this is what they look like when they’re growing (he writes nervously 🙂

First Aubergine

And some good news, back in my previous post (veggie plot update 23rd June)  I thought I’d lost one of the mini cucumber plants due to lack of watering whilst being away for a weekend. Well, giving it a good soak twice daily, a little TLC and plenty of Tomato feed seems to have been the perfect pick-me-up. It seems to be on the mend and the cucumbers have plumped up a little more. Time will tell but I’ve not given up on the little fella yet!


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Shopping in Milton Keynes.

Before heading home after last weekends trip to Bletchley Park for the Vintage Computing Festival, we have a wander around Milton Keynes city centre taking in the sights and of course…a little shopping too!

Redeveloped as a ‘new town’ in the early ’70s to accommodate an incoming population from Londoners, it’s grid like design and zones offer a great walking experience as we meandered between tree lined avenues and high-rise buildings.

Our hotel overlooked the Xscape indoor ski slope so we made this our first port of call. Nice and cool in here!

Underpass market

Repairs to another underpass.

…and up into the sunshine

Hitting the stores and buying a new pair of All Stars.

On the hunt for a coffee.

Stopping to watch the world go by.

Every few minutes another window would open. I’m guessing, no air-con 🙂

The LEGO store pick & mix!

Whilst stopping for lunch, birds arrived to join us.

My favorite shot of the day.

Heading on home with a boot full of shopping bags, perfect end to a perfect weekend. This won’t be the last time we come here.

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Veggie Plot update 23rd June

A few update pictures from around the veggie plot. Being away last weekend i was concerned that everything would suffer in this mini heat wave we seem to be having. However, a neighbor of mine had offered to water and keep everything in check for me.

Number 2 herb tub is doing very well in the shade, number one in full sun isn’t. Time to move it I guess.

The second early potatoes have started to flower and  the first earlies’ leaves are starting to drop so it’ll be harvest time soon. Will have a dig around this weekend and see what come up. Main crop are just starting to bud.

Friends and families Tomatoes don’t seem to be doing too well this year or are a bit late. My cherry toms  are just starting to flower.

Aubergines continue to grow without any sign of distress so far.

Our first mini cucumber of the season is almost ready for picking.

Second batch of mixed salad leaves making its way to the table.

Only flowers and no fruit on the courgettes. I wonder if  this the first one forming? I’ve moved a few of them out of the greenhouse and into the veggie beds as space is becoming limited – despite getting a better grown under cover last year.  I hope they do o.k.

Both peas and beans seem to coming along nicely.

…and sadly, one of the mini cucumber plants has taken a turn for the worst. My neighbor had said that unfortunately she didn’t water every day and with this one being in a very sunny area of the greenhouse i think it’s given up. It’s a shame really because it had quite a crop forming that now, seem to be wilting. I’ll keep watering & feeding but i think it’s gone 😦 Going forward, I’m thinking about hooking up a timer/hose pipe system in the greenhouse.

…and on a happy note, really please with the following picture after misting one of the tomato plants!

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Veggie plot update – June 16th

Another quick update of how things are progressing in the veggie plot & greenhouse. With the sun finally returning, I’ve resumed damping down the greenhouse in the morning and when I get home from work. Everything seems to be coming along quite nicely.

The runner beans have reached the top of the canes and of the twelve plants, only one seems to have suffered a bit by being munched on by something. The peas are really starting to shoot up and are around 2ft now. The other day I’m sure they were only about 1ft. Both herb gardens are providing plenty of fresh cooking ingredients and strawberries for desert – although I’m prone to swiping a few every time I walk by 🙂

Over in the main veggie bed, things weren’t looking as good for some reason. I’d previously split the bed into two parts, with sowing about 2 weeks apart. In one half ( first sowing) not much has broken the soil surface apart from the odd radish. In the other half, things are looking a little better, especially the spinach. I’ve been checking daily for the past few weeks now but nothing. That was, until this evening when the first telltale signs of growth are evident. Lets hope things catch up soon!

Cucumbers beginning to appear.

Hopefully the start of one of those whopping great big ‘cumbers we had last year.

Potatoes – First earlies.

The last few Aubergine plants ready for the final repot. I’ve been growing these extra few to give to my parents and a friend at work tomorrow.

No courgettes yet, but plenty of early flower. Hopefully a few will follow shortly.

The first mixed salad tubs are almost finished now, giving about ten generous pickings per tub.  I’ve got three double sets on the go at any one time. This is the second set, with the third just starting to sprout. One we’ve had the last of the first set, I’ll add fresh soil & sow the next lot.

Come on tomato’s, Basil leaves are waiting for you!

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Hello sun!

After an unsettled week, weatherwise it’s nice to see the sun had finally came out of hiding and looking at the ‘ol desktop weather widget, looks like it’s here to stay…for a bit anyway.

A few images taken from around the garden whilst relaxing next to the pond.

Our new friend (dubbed Dwayne) seems to have picked our garden as its new home. He’s never far way and is getting used to me pottering around the garden without getting too nervous. His mate (dubbed Dwayne-etta) is usually having a doze in one of the trees. ‘Dwayne’ hasn’t quite sussed out the bird table yet. He spends most of the time walking around on the roof knowing that there’s some goodies somewhere!

More white lilies in the pond. Counted about ten this evening but still no sign of the pink and red ones yet.

The last open Lillie, before shutting up shop for another day.

A few buttercups invading one of the borders.

I love these large globe Alliums. We only had a few but over the years, they’ve self seeded and more and  more appear each year.

Having quite a large concrete driveway, rain brings out the snails en mass. Luckily my Hosta’s are surviving…so far!

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2010 Rainworth Skoda 51st Dukeries Rally.

Yesterday was this years Dukeries Rally and I popped along to the Sherwood Pines stages taking along my Fuji HS-10 to see how well it performed. I shot hand held in shutter priority mode, at speeds of between 100th & 200th/sec and as the stage marshal’s had moved the spectators area even further away from the action this year, telephoto was a must.

The Fuji handled pretty well but my only criticism was the longer pause between shots. Certainly compared to my DSLR, it seemed quite slow. However, the 7-shot burst mode came in handy which captured multiple shots in a fraction of a second. Maybe i needs to play around with the continual shooting options a little more?

Image stabilization was great at the full 720mm end, especially considering I was shooting hand held. I was certainly getting better results than with this rather than my hand held shots with my 450d and the 300m end with my Tamron.

The woodland silence was about to be broken!

…and just a couple of quick videos I shot (although having my tripod with me would have helped here!)

A few more photos can be found on my Flickr page –

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Our garden.

Just a few random photos taken whilst out and about in the garden.

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