September 2016


Thursday 1st

12 to 20 to 14°C. 9.61kWh 1.9kW max. A good day for the first day of autumn with thin clouds and quite a lot of sunshine. There was some heavy rain in the evening.


Kirstin and Anna came to visit for the day and we went for a walk around Colemere.


Friday 2nd

14 to 18 to 13°C. 3.36kWh 800W max. Grey clouds with a few glimpses of the sun in the afternoon. Rain is forecast for tomorrow.


Picked some of the Bramley apples. A very good crop; just picking the biggest and best filled four crates. That is enough to last us over the Winter but we might pick some more later to give to Sarah. We also picked the Mirabelle plums and some more Laxton's apples.I couldn't prune the Mirabelle last winter so some of the fruit was too high to reach. So I cut back the tallest branches, pruning and picking at the same time. Not something you should do with plums, cutting them while the sap is still rising, but I have done it before and as long as you cut them cleanly rather than tearing the branches off, they haven't suffered from infection of the wounds.

That just leaves the pears and the Cox and Russet apples to picks which might be the end of September or even October.


Saturday 3rd

12 to 19 to 15°C. 1.87kWh 400W max. Rained all day and most of the evening though most of it was just light rain.


Sunday 4th

14 to 17 to 14°C. 3.25kWh 1.6kW max. Mainly cloudy with some sunshine for a short while in the afternoon.


Started to transplant the autumn/spring bedding from their 12 cell trays into 9cm square pots, starting with the pansies and wallflowers.


Monday 5th

14 to 24 to 19°C. 3.71kWh 1.0kW max. Light rain overnight but cleared by morning to warm and humid, becoming more so by the afternoon with a few glimpsed of the sun. Even late in the evening it still felt warmer outside than in the house.


Continued transplanting the autumn/spring bedding. moving on to the sweet william. This is a big job with 4 kinds of plants with around 180 each.


Tuesday 6th

19 to 23 to 18°C. 5.65kWh 1.6kW max. Warm and humid overnight and it was sunny for a short while in the morning before clouding over again.


Pat pulled up the outdoor tomatoes. We are not going to try to grow these again. Just like last year they pollinated and grew quite well but started to rot before they ripened. The weather round here is not conducive to growing tomatoes outdoors, nor any other similar crop like peppers, aubergines and squash so from now on these will only be grown in the polytunnel. Much better to grow brassicas, celery, leeks, peas, beans and potatoes which have all done well this year. We have also had some good fruit crops: cherries, strawberries, raspberries and especially plums and apples.


Wednesday 7th

18 to 23 to 18°C. 5.43kWh 1.6kW max. Another cloudy humid day with some sunshine in the afternoon.


There are suddenly a lot of caterpillars on the brussel sprouts and broccoli. Usually the blue and great tits keep these under control. Perhaps this late in the year with no young to feed they aren't collecting them any more. So we will need to keep inspecting them ourselves.


Thursday 8th

15 to 19 ro 15°C. 9.79kWh 1.7kW max. Bright and breezy with a couple of short sharp showers in the morning.


Back to cutting back hedges and sawing firewood for the winter.


Friday 9th

14 to 20 to 17°C. 3.63kWh 1.2kW max. Mainly cloudy with a strong southerly breeze and a few spots of rain.


Saturday 10th

13 to 16 to 10°C. 3.71kWh 1.0kW max. Rained over night though not as heavily as forecast. This was followed by an overcast day with a cold northerly breeze.


Sunday 11th

8 to 18 to 13°C 9.6kWh 1.8kW max. A much sunnier day but still with a cold breeze, despite it coming from the south.


Shredding and chipping followed by chipping and shredding. By the end of the afternoon we had filled the last quarter of one compost bin and 3/4 of the next one. About 3 metres cubed though it will shrink to half that amount as it ferments over the next few months.


Monday 12th

13 to 21 to 18°C. 3.1kWh 800W max. Cloudy with a few light showers and some sun in the afternoon.


Tuesday 13th

14 to 21 to 17°C. 3.71kWh 1.5kW max. Started off sunny and humid but by mid-morning it had clouded over and just after lunch it started to thunder in the distance. The heavy thundery showers lasted till early in the evening. Meanwhile further east they were reporting hot sun with temperatures in excess of 30°C.


Wednesday 14th

16 to 24 to 19°C. 7.72kWh 1.6kW max. Very misty start, not surprising after all the rain yesterday, but eventually cleared to a very sunny warm afternoon.


Started turning the compost to make more room for more shredding but it was too warm to do it for long so went back to cutting back shrubs and hedges in the more shady parts of the garden.


Thursday 15th

16 to 23 to 17°C. 3.72kWh 1.5kW max. Thick mist in the morning clearing slowly to some more hot sunshine in the afternoon. This will probably be the last of the summery weather before autumn sets in.


Sawing and cutting more firewood to make room for the newly cut wood from the hedges and trees. The wood shed is rapidly filling up and there will be plenty of fuel for the stove this winter.


Friday 16th

14 to 17 to 12°C. 5kWh 1.1kW max. A very different day; cloudy with a strong cold north-westerly wind.


Continued cutting up firewood. Sawing was a good way to keep warm!!


Saturday 17th

12 to 18 to 12°C. 8.65kWh 1.8kW max. A better day with blue skies, sunshine and only a light breeze.


Continued cutting the firewood. Some of the logs were quite thick and, though I could have sawed them by hand, I decided to use the chainsaw instead to save time.


Sunday 18th

5 to 17 to 15°C. 9.66kWh 1.8kW max. Very cold start after a clear moonlit night and never became very warm despite the almost continous sunshine.


Monday 19th

14 to 16 to 12°C. 3.36kWh 800W max. A grey day with no sign of the sun and the cold westerly breeze is back.


Spent most of the afternoon fixing the electric chain saw which died on me just before lunch. Eventually discovered that one of the wires inside the cable under the clamp inside the casing had come apart. Very unusual; the clamp is supposed to stop the cable moving about and becoming detached!


Tuesday 20th

11 to 17 to 11°C. 3.68kWh 900W max. Another cloudy day but a little less breezy.


No sooner had I fixed the chainsaw yesterday when the clutch went which is a lot more terminal. It would cost more to repair or get spares than to buy a new one so that is what I will do. It has done a lot of work over the last few years and if I get another one maybe something else will eventually break on the new one so I will keep the old one for spares.


Wednesday 21st

12 to 18 to 15°C. 3.31kWh 600W max. Another cloudy day.


The new chainsaw arrived and I was soon cutting up lots of logs for firewood. I had forgotten how much better a new chain cuts through wood than an old one does, despite my regular sharpening with the correct tools. We are rapidly running out of room in the woodshed.


Thursday 22nd

11 to 16 to 9°C. 8.87kWh 1.7kW max.  Sunny but not feeling very warm in a strong westerly breeze.


Friday 23rd

4 to 17 to 10°C. 7.74kWh 1.6kW max. Clear skies overnight leading to a cold but sunny start. The wind moved round to the south by the afternoon.


Picked the Russet apples; another good crop. These keep very well and I shall start slicing one into my breakfast porridge once the Laxton apples are finished. Then dug up the Sarpo Mira late maincrop potatoes; also a good crop but there was some slug damage so these will need to be eaten soon rather than storing them well into next year.


Saturday 24th

12 to 20 to 16°C. 3.61kWh 1.2kW max. Warmed up overnight with some sunshine first thing but it soon clouded over to a dull afternoon with a warm southerly breeze and a few spots of rain.


We have finally finished cutting up all the stashes of wood from last year and this and the wood shed is full.


Sunday 25th

13 to 16 to 9°C. 7.03kWh 1.9kW max. Heavy rain overnight clearing by the morning to sunny intervals with a cold westerly breeze.


Potted on most of the rest of the chrysanthemum cuttings for next year and then made a start on repotting the hyacinths, tulips and narcissus. Still September but I am already preparing for next Spring. Helped Pat to cut more of the Butternut and Crown Prince squashes. It won 't be long befor we start clearing the vines out of the polytunnel.


Monday 26th

10 to 15 to 13°C. 1.34kWh 500W max.  A dull damp day with almost continuous light rain or drizzle.


Continued moving the spring bulbs into new pots of refreshed fertilised soil.


Tuesday 27th

13 to 19 to 13°C. 2.81kWh 800W max. A better day. Still cloudy but with a warmer breeze and no rain.


Time to do some more chipping and shredding but there is nowhere to put it. So started turning the compost bins into each other. Three need doing, each with around 3cu.m. of very wet shreddings, and I'm not as fit as I used to be so this will take a couple of days to complete. 3 should go into 2 as it shrinks as it matures, so that will leave an empty one.


Wednesday 28th

13 to 22 to 17°C. 5.26kWh 1.6kW max. Sunny intervals with a warm southerly breeze.


Finished turning the compost and potting on the spring bulbs.


Thursday 29th

13 to 17 to 10°. 7.44kWh 1.7kW max. Sunny intervals but the cold blustery wind is back.


Back to chipping and shredding now we have somewhere to put it all.


Friday 30th

9 to 15 to 8°C. 5.48kWh 1.2kW max. Sunny intervals and short heavy showers.


Took away the pots of petunias and replaced them with pansies.