Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A summer update from La Pasera

Summer is a busy time for us here at La Pasera. Crops are coming thick and fast with beetroot, carrots, marrow and courgettes, lettuce and herbs producing very well indeed. The onions have been a disaster this year with an early onset disease stunting growth and producing little but we'll plant more leeks and use them where possible. Fennel and Kohlrabi are also doing really well so lots of crunchy salads planned.

We have harvested our green and red gooseberry crops and made a totally indulgent 10 kilos of Gooseberry and Mustard Seed Pickle. This pickle was the reason we bought gooseberry bushes. This year we adapted the recipe and used red currants instead of bought dried currants, simply because it had cropped really well and we find them a bit acid. First taste test is good but a few months maturing will help as always. We've pickled walnuts as well but few this year as the trees have produced little.

We drink a lot of infusions instead of coffee these days so we are busy collecting and drying lemon verbena, mint, chamomile and various herbs. These will be used alone or mixed into teas with the addition of spices.

We had a couple of great nights out recently, firstly we went to see Carmina Burana in Oviedo. It was a superb production with imaginative use of projections and imagery to accompany the singers and orchestra. It was also The Ribadesella Jazz Festival this last weekend, sadly just over two nights now whereas it used to be four. It's a free festival in town and really worth a visit. Janice Harrington was the main act on Saturday with a brilliant four piece Jazz band.

Luis has made another Escrino, this time for use to use as a bread basket. It's lovely and just the right size.

The badgers are still visiting nightly and feeding off the fallen cherries. Gawber is fascinated by them and consequently we have treated the cats for prevention of fleas just in case. We have built a small natural water hole near the badgers as an extra source of water for visiting animals and birds; much needed in this hot weather.

Ribadesella is getting busier as the season progresses and there are many fiestas and events up and coming. We fancy going to one of the classical concerts held in a large subterranean cavern at the Tito Bustillo complex if we can get tickets but no-one knows when they will be issued.

The garden is looking good with lots of splashes of colour in and amongst the green bushes, foliage and grasses with many shady spots for the cats to rest during the heat of the day.

A few visitors for us over the coming weeks, a street market to prepare for, lots of processing produce and more building work to complete so lots to keep us occupied and interested.


  1. Your garden is looking wonderful. Any tips on growing gooseberries? We have a few young bushes here but have never grown them before, any tips gratefully received.

    1. Thanks Anne - gooseberries grow well here on clay. We add home-made compost in winter and then as we cut rhubarb, we use the leaves under the gooseberry bush to prevent saw fly - it seems to work well. Other than that, cut out dead wood and try and get a goblet shape for air flow. Our were on the small side this year but I think it was the random weather we've been experiencing. Let us know how you get on.


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