Sproutlets and Purple Beans!

I’ve never grown Brussel Sprouts before and I must confess that I’m as thrilled as any woman in pyjamas could be! The sproutlets are starting to appear and I’m already hoping that they’ll be a success story this year.
Brussel Sprouts are probably the most hated vegetable ever… and I once thought so too. As a child I was made to eat ALL my vegetables. The concession with sprouts was that my Mum allowed them to be covered with any condiment to make this happen. I favoured vinegar, holding my nose and not inhaling for a loooong time.
Once I left home I realised that if brussels are eaten whilst young and steamed until they are just cooked they are quite good. I also found out that if they are stir fried with a little ginger and garlic… they are fabulous!

Baby Brussel Sprouts

Elsewhere in the garden the Borlotti beans aren’t doing very well. I’ve counted three pods so far and it looks as if I’ll be using these as a garnish! My disappointment has been minimised though because the dwarf french beans are looking fabulous! I have both purple and yellow varieties and I’m looking forward to a taste test very soon.

Dwarf Purple Podded French Beans

When I planned the garden at the start of the year I imagined that it would contained mainly vegetables with about 25% flowers to attract the pollinators. What I actually planted is approximately 50% flowers and I have the urge to grow even more. I am thinking already about having a proper cutting patch next year so I can free up more space to grow vegetables. I love having fresh flowers in the house and being able to give flowers away to other people!

Morning Sun

Now that the Nectar Bar has filled out the colours mingle very nicely together. Many flowers are actually at head height because I planted them in the tallest raised bed. I was a little concerned that the tall plants may look a little strange but… I like it. It gives a different perspective and, like a five year old, I love to jump up on the walls and walk around the edges :-)

Nectar Bar in August

Just like me, the bees and butterflies are somewhat camera shy… I’ve realised that as soon as a camera makes an appearance the wildlife seems to zoom off. I have to practice the art of patience and just be still for a while – a lesson for life as well as gardening!

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32 thoughts on “Sproutlets and Purple Beans!

    • I’m really pleased with the Nectar Bar. I remember looking at bare earth in February and planning on having lots of plants that would attract bees and butterflies. I was a little concerned that it would look like a mess of clashing colours but they all blend beautifully. Thanks for your comments :-)

  1. I love brussel sprouts however my husband can’t stand the smell of them cooking so it isn’t often that I get to enjoy them. I sometimes think of growing them. They are so cool looking on the plant. Love all your blooms.

  2. I think there is a whole generation of British children who as adults are still battling with the sprout phobia. I can just manage them if they are either very tiny or shredded and disguised with bacon and/or chestnuts.
    I have tried growing them here but fortunately its too windy. Did I really say that!

  3. Wow your garden is rocking!! I just ordered my brussels sprout seeds this last week. they are probably in the mailbox waiting for me to get them in the ground, in hopes that I might have thanksgiving brussels-might be wishful thinking…. Pics are stunning as usual, thanks for sharing and inspiring!

    • Brussel Sprouts over here take about 6 or 7 months to mature. I wanted mine for Christmas but I got a bit excited and planted them too early! Maybe your lovely climate combined with fast growing variety will mean that you will be eating them in November!

  4. My daughter will only eat sprouts raw – I chop them finely and make something approaching a coleslaw. Love the colours in the nectar bar, your garden looks so beautiful. Please let me know if you ever decide to open it to the public. I’ll be there with my notebook, shamelessly pinching ideas to take home!

  5. I’ve never been a fan of brussels sprouts, either, but maybe I just didn’t have them cooked correctly. I’ll have to give them a try again. I’m so glad you planted lots of flowers for the pollinators. They’ll keep your veggies busy!

  6. I’m with you all the way on the brussel sprouts, you don’t really like them much until you’re a grown up. I toss them in a pan with a wee bit off water to sear for only 4 minutes or so. Then I douce them with fresh squeezed lemon and lemon pepper..delish. I love the idea of a ‘nectar bar’, very hip. Those purple beans are exotic looking, I’ll have to look for those in our local market to try.

  7. I’m definitely going to plant brussel sprouts this year. I think they are delicious! I planted some flageolet beans this year, but I’m not quite sure what to do with them. They look like green beans so I’m not sure if I should leave them on the bush to mature or pick them while they are still young and tender. Any tips?

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