Monday Harvest – May 7th 2012

I seem to have coloured coded my first few photos this week.  Here we have the reds – still more chillies, a few cherry tomatoes from my Tiny Tim plant which is still going strong in a pot and some tamarillos.

Next the greens (or more accurately a single green) – I have been harvesting a fair bit of basil lately and making pesto for the freezer.  My plants are still growing but we’ve probably only got a few more weeks left before the weather gets a bit colder and they start looking very sad and sorry for themselves.

Now for the oranges – the colour not the fruit (I do have some fruit developing but they are small and very green at the moment).  I have really enjoyed growing Sweet Potatoes this year – I will write a separate post about it soon – but this harvest of a kg worth came from one of the plants which I removed after layering some of its stems.  I am hoping the layered segments will get through the winter and start growing again in Spring.

 

I have yet to cook these but the weather is screaming soup at me so I suspect that’s what they will become.

These next few bits look a little pathetic.  I dug a small Kipfler potato plant from my side bed and found these few spuds – summer potato plantings really don’t seem to be worth the trouble here.  I have been harvesting a handful of beans every few days – this looks like one of the smaller harvests but it is the only one that made it in front of the camera.  For the record they were Jade and I ate them stir fried.

This final harvest isn’t something I grew myself, I found them on the footpath as I walked to the shops, in fact I’ve found a few of these everyday I’ve walked down my road in the last couple of weeks.  What are they?  They are feijoas.  Feijoas, for those unfamiliar with them, are a South American fruit which are particularly popular in New Zealand and to a lesser extent here in Australia.  Interestingly when I lived in London I got a weekly Fruit box from Abel & Cole and feijoas featured in that on at least one occasion, so I presume that they must be grown in or near the UK as well.  The plants are often grown here as hedging but the fruit is edible as well.  I really like them they taste a bit like a guava, a slightly perfumey taste with a lightly acidic feel.  If you don’t like guava’s you probably wont like feijoas either, but if you do I think they are definitely worth a try if you can find them.

It will be interesting to see how many more weeks I’ll be able to include colours other than green in my harvest – a few at least but come June it may become more and more difficult (at least until the cauliflowers are ready).

For more vegetable ogling head over to Daphnes Dandelions.

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35 Responses to Monday Harvest – May 7th 2012

  1. Mark Willis says:

    I don’t think feijoas are grown in the UK anywhere. The only place I have seen them is in the south of France. Most of the Abel and Cole stuff is locally produced, but they do include plenty of stuff from abroad – e.g. avocadoes, bananas etc.
    Are the ones in your photo ripe, or do they turn colour on ripening?

    • Liz says:

      They are a little bit underripe but almost there. They change colour slightly browning a little but they are still pretty green even when ripe. They do soften a little to touch though. I think the plants are frost hardy so perhaps you could become the UK’s first feijoa grower Mark.

  2. Probably imported from far away – must admit I’ve never spotted any here

    • Liz says:

      I’m not so sure – apparently they can withstand temps down to -10C so they might have been UK grown….the Channel islands perhaps?

  3. Nina says:

    I have a young Feijoa (or Pineapple Guava) that I planted this year. I’ve got an even smaller Strawberry one, as well. I have no idea if they will be successful but I bought them locally (and I naively think that if it’s sold locally, it will grow locally but sadly that’s not always the case) so I live in hope that they will do something, eventually! I garden in the Latrobe Valley, Gippsland.

    • Liz says:

      Ah now I remember where you garden – thanks for the prompt. They seem to do really well in Melbourne. A friend of mine gardens in Geelong though and hers have refused to fruit but I understand that some varieties are like that. I think they are pretty hardy so climate wise you shouldn’t have a problem but some varieties are a little tempermental apparently. Not having grown one though i have no idea how long you have to wait for them to get their act together. I ate a strawberry guava for the first time recently. I like them too, I would love to plant both a Feijoa and a strawberry guava but I am rapidly running out of space.

  4. Bumblelush says:

    Beautiful harvest! I’ve never had feijoas but I do like guavas, so I’d probably enjoy them. I also just remembered that I forgot to start my Tiny Tim seeds. :(

  5. Allsion says:

    Your harvest photos are just beautiful! I am dying for some fresh basil! And those sweet potatos look wonderful.

  6. Jo says:

    I’ve never heard of feijoas before, interesting that you had them in the UK. I wouldn’t say that I’m very adventurous really when it comes to food so there’s lots of things I’ve never tasted.

    • Liz says:

      I will happily eat any kind of fruit or vegetable but when it comes to animal products I get a lot more conservative about what I will put in my mouth so I can sympathise.

  7. kitsapFG says:

    Never heard of feijoas before – learn something new every day!

    Your harvest is quite colorful this week, and very tasty looking too. :D

    • Liz says:

      I have a a friend from New Zealand who has introduced me to a lot of these things, They seem to grow a lot of South American fruits in New Zealand for some reason.

  8. Andrea says:

    Those sweet potatoes look fantastic, i can see them in soup with a bit of cumin and garlic, Yum ! I dug up my capsicums today(they have a couple of tiny fruits) and are going to try to overwinter them,(see you have inspired me) also gave them a good soak with worm juice. Any special hints to keep them alive over winter?

    • Liz says:

      I grew mine in pots and left them in the same pots to overwinter and that worked. Not sure how they will go having been moved but I will be interested to find out.

  9. maryhysong says:

    I’m going to have to check into fejoi, love the sweet potatoes, that’s another thing I’m hoping will be decently successful here this year, we shall see.

    • Liz says:

      I think feijoa are worth a look – a lot of people grow them for the plants sake alone – which I guess is why I am able to find fruit on the footpath.

  10. pooks says:

    I’ve been avoiding pasta lately and thus none of my lovely basil has ended up on my plate (except minced in this dish or that). Thanks for reminding me that I can make the pesto and freeze it! I know what I’ll be doing this weekend!

  11. Daphne says:

    The feijoas sound interesting. I couldn’t grow them here as it gets to -20C. There are so many plants I wish I could grow, but can’t due to the weather. I’m just hoping the figs can produce here as they are barely hardy and last year they died back to the ground.

    • Liz says:

      That will be interesting to see how the figs do. -20C is ridiculously cold by the way, here we think its cold if the temperature drops below 10.

  12. Julie says:

    You have introduced me to yet another fruit.. feijoas.. I need to start a list of exotic fruits to try. Love your color coded harvest! I was just rummaging through my freezer and saw quiet a bit of pesto from last year.. need to work on that before the new basil plants need harvesting.

    • Liz says:

      I find ‘lost’ things in my freezer all the time – and even more in my fridge and pantry – I have been making a concerted effort sot try and use up food but then I buy more and….I think you know the rest.

  13. I love guavas so I would definitely want to try these feijoas if I get here. So what are you making with sweet potatoes?

    • Liz says:

      I think soup, I really like sweet potato and parsnip soup – and I know dad has some parsnips ready and I’m visiting tomorrow.

  14. mac says:

    Lovely reds and sweet potatoes, I was given a feijoa plant last year, unfortunately it didn’t make it through the winter here ><"

    • Liz says:

      Shame about the feijoa. I think I will have to get myself one – there are only so many you can collect off the footpath…

  15. Bee Girl says:

    Your sweet potatoes look wonderful! I think I may have missed the opportunity to grow some of my own this year. Ah well…there’s always next year! Enjoy a couple of bites for me, will you? ;-)

  16. Louise says:

    Oooh, look at your sweet potatoes!

  17. leduesorelle says:

    Until the rhubarb matures, all we have are the greens… thanks for the treat of color!

  18. Diana says:

    Oh I have just received some feijoas but have not bite onto it yet. Your sweet potatoes harvest is very good. Well done! I am happy to hear you enjoy growing them.

    • Liz says:

      I have to say growing sweet potatoes has been a lot of fun – I tend to like growing tubers best – the excitement of the harvest and all that.

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