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Monday, 29 August 2016

Egg and chips anyone? Growing Thompson and Morgan’s new grafted plant.

It’s always fun to try something different in the garden. For me, this year it was Thompson and Morgan’s Egg and Chips plant, hand-grafted so it grows aubergines (aka egg plants) from its stem and potatoes from its roots – great for gardeners without the luxury of an allotment or large veg patch. (The two vegetables belong to the same plant family, known as the Solanaceae or nightshade.)  This novelty arrived by post in May, protected by a plastic cylinder, looking very healthy. Planted up on the sunny terrace in a large container (as per the instructions), it soon expanded to fill the space. Delicate mauve flowers began emerging in July, but it wasn’t until August that they began to set.
While Thompson and Morgan claim an average of three or four large aubergines per plant, I now have five aubergines of various sizes hanging there, with another four flowers looking promising. The potato yield could be up to two kg, suitable for boiling, mashing or, of course, chips. The spuds seem to have begun producing their own foliage, so I'm looking forward to seeing what lies beneath when all this yellows and dies down.

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Anyone interested in crafts?

Paul Martin's Handmade Revolution is on BBC2 this week and next - a celebration of British crafts and crafters. So many inspiring ideas, including an exquisite dress made by felting in episode 1 (shown on Monday 8). One of the judges is Mary Jane Baxter, author of Chic on a Shoestring and The Modern Girl's guide to Hatmaking.
Unfortunately it's on at 6am, but there's always the iplayer.....