I knew while we were away that picking the rest of our apples ought to be a priority when we got back, particularly being reminded every day when looking out of the window and seeing the laden trees in the gardens below. Our cookers do tend to survive on the tree until picked but there comes a point when they can’t hang on any longer – I therefore made a small start today, picking those that could be reached with the ordinary step ladder which unfortunately is only a very small proportion of the crop! This is the one crop I never weigh before dealing with them , as we have never had a year when we haven’t had enough! I shall cook and purée (then freeze) some of these without removing skin or core, which saves time and effort, and blanch/freeze the rest. There is mincemeat to be made, and I shall try and give some away – apples, anyone?
Quite a few of the tomatoes I had stripped from the greenhouse before we went away had ripened in our absence and are now skinned and ready to be frozen and today there were good pickings to be had from the raspberries (Autum Bliss and Autumn Treasure) along with a lonely blackberry and a surprise offering of alpine strawberries. These periodically pop up in odd places in the garden, this time conveniently in the fruit cage, running along the fence under the blackberries. An inspection of the courgette and squash plants produced the usual marrow from now sad looking plants and a decision to pick the harvestable size squash before any slugs took a fancy to them. I shall certainly grow these again next year – on second thoughts, let’s taste them first!