Vegetable garden – will this year be the last ?

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So the summer has been and gone, and what a summer it was too but now the nights are drawing in and the autumn is upon us, We have slightly more time to sit down and write a couple of articles about the vegetable garden  and to bring everybody back up to speed after a fairly long gap.

You may well remember back in May  ( article here )  we finally managed to get the seed potatoes into the ground after a rainy spring that kept everybody inside  and the ground so wet and muddy that work was impossible.

We said back then that we’d planted very late and unfortunately we paid  for our tardiness.

We planted 50 kg of seed potatoes and when it finally came to dig up the new crop –  what actually came to the surface was more or less,  50 kg of potatoes.  Small hard potatoes that had obviously suffered.

Even the digging up was not that easy as the ground had been baked so hard  it was like concrete.  I even managed to break the handle of the spade attempting to break through the potatoes.  In the end we had to wait until there was a rainfall,  finally some rain after two months of drought,  which soften the ground up enough to be able to get to the potatoes below.

This vegetable garden is turning into a real character building exercise as you can see in the images below, it was a thoroughly disappointing season after all that work – just four boxes of potatoes. I wonder just how long they will last. Certainly not right through the winter.

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Then it was time to dismantle the electric fence which all things considered actually had done quite a good job this year but then thinking about it, maybe the porcupines knew that there was little chance of a feast and so didn’t even bother attempting to break in.


Back in February 2009 we published an article at the start of the project that was to become the giornaledibarganews vegetable garden.

In that article we wrote the following words:  Gradually the economic problems besetting world finances and markets starts to make itself felt here in Barga. The “happy island” is not imune after all. Effectively we are all connected up and intertwined – its a world market economy after all. The far extremes of the disposable society where goods are constructed marketed, sold, used and then thrown away once broken or a newer model supersedes them has come home to roost. The system has now broken. Whose fault it is is up for discussion but what is clear is that huge shifts in expectations are about to take place. Things are not going to be the same ever again.

It is time to get the spade out and start digging. We are talking about a market garden, a vegetable patch – the orto.
Over the next few months we will be documenting the progress, or otherwise, of the barganews vegetable garden as we move from a hazy project on a sheet of paper to fresh vegetables delivered to the kitchen sometime this summer (hopefully)

How true those words have turned out to be as recent events here in Europe and Italy have shown.


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