This month heralds an exciting and busy time for the kitchen gardener. The weather is warmer, days are longer and everything should be growing well, looking and smelling fantastic. Gone is the bare ground that was worked and nourished throughout autumn and early spring, now is the time to look forward to useful crops such as potatoes and garlic being lifted. Broad beans and peas should still be available in abundance, although it can be hard to keep up with the picking. Bean supports are usually put in place at the beginning of the month, ready for the many different varieties of beans that can be sown either in pots or directly into the ground.
If you made an early sowing of beets they should be ready for using now. All members of the squash family can be planted outside in June provided they’ve been fully hardened off. Greenhouse tomatoes might be ready for picking, I’ve done really well with mine this year, lots of large handsome fruits ready for picking now. Salad leaves are readily available for picking all through summer if you’re keen to grow them. I planted out the final block of sweetcorn this month, between here and the allotment I should get a steady and constant supply of sweet cobs. Well, that’s the plan. The onions are swelling nicely as are the first sowing of Kohl Rabi – a first for me.
Summer fruiting raspberries are fruiting now, not as well as I’d hoped but enough for the occasional harvest. They are however, producing plenty of new canes for next season. Currants and gooseberries are doing really well, so much so that I think I should make a jam before I end up with a glut. Actually, I’d forgotten how good gooseberries taste when fully ripe, I tend to pick them when they are more or less mushy to avoid a bitter taste.
I’m cutting lots of beautiful sweet pea for the house, the scent is wonderful. Enjoy your June kitchen garden!