We can barely keep up with the growth down in the polytunnels and growing field, and flowers such as these marigolds are attracting huge numbers of beneficial insects and pollinators.
Borage has seeded and is growing around the pond, and is great for attracting bees, as well as having tasty flowers and leaves (they are rather cucumbery). I have a theory that in the way that any meat that is a little indistinct is generally said to taste like chicken, any plant that has an indistinct flavour is said to taste like cucumber.
I have no idea if frogs taste like chicken, but they do a marvellous job of pest control, and our tunnel pond has a thriving community – we’ve seen ten at one go, of all sizes, and they seem happy there. The surrounding fields are full of them too.
The large granite rocks around the pond act as a heat sink, taking in heat during the day, and releasing it slowly at night, thus maintaining a more even temperature in the pond, and (we hope) in the tunnel generally.
The luxury of having a tunnel is that fruit arrives early, and strawberries are no exception. This year we have grown them in half milk cartons hung from the crop bars, as well as at ground level, which works well and deters pests. A few more days of warm weather and they should all start to ripen properly.
Our first veg crop of the year is this mange tout, which is delightfully sweet, and if picked regularly will just keep on coming.