With little prospect of our tomatoes ripening any further we decided to clear all the vines in the greenhouses and turn the fruits into chutney and sauces. Stripey ‘Tigerella’, good old dependable ‘Gardener’s Delight’, plum tomato ‘Principe Borghese, and beautifully ribbed ‘Costoluto Fiorentino’ have all earned their keep over the last few months performing well despite the cool, wet, summer. The leaves and stems went onto the compost heap along with the root-balls and the compost they were grown in.
Outside, despite it being November, the grass is still growing and dry opportunities to cut it are getting rarer. Luckily a few days of wind made them ready to cut by mid afternoon. Our finer lawn in the flower garden is looking remarkably good, though worm casts are causing problems as they became smeared by the rear roller of the mower - a little bit unsightly, and a potential seed bed for opportunistic weeds.
In the borders our dahlias are starting to look a little bedraggled under the weight of sodden foliage. We’re removing the worst of them but hanging onto summer with our fingertips by letting those still in flower have a few more weeks in which to add an injection of colour into the autumn garden. Leaf collecting will soon start in earnest and already our bins are prepared ready to receive their first consignment from the lawns. In two years' time we’ll be spreading the result - beautiful, friable, leafmould - onto the autumn borders.