The last flowery flourish

The definition of an optimist.

You can gaze upon this scene of carnage and state ‘no, no, there is still some good eating in here, honest.’

Swiss chard, a few tomatoes, basil hiding under the padron peppers, parsley, spinach…

But it is still a potager in November after a week of heavy storms and endless rain. And neglect.

(And I do apologise about the rain boast again, dear Australian drought sufferers. We had another three inches while I was away last week.)

But you have to have a teensy bit of sympathy for my wet and drenched plight. I did lose a large branch off my mirabelle plum tree in a storm.

Its days are numbered.

Dare I whisper ‘firewood’ as I pass? It has been ailing for a few years now. And I came to the realisation that I don’t actually like mirabelle plums.

Do they confiscate my French Resident’s permit for uttering that heresy?

Back to the mess that was once an orderly potager. I can see structural damage to almost all the chestnut uprights. Do you think they heard me muttering I am going to pull them down and start again?

Probably. The ones in among the raspberry beds are holding up, but I suspect that is because they are being held up by the fruiting canes. Those voracious beasties are capable of colonising even the upright supports.

And the dahlias have put on such a burst that they are flopping all over the place. Even the ones that refused to flower right up until last week.

I must write down the details on the labels that had thus far declared ‘mystery’. This one is gorgeous.

And yes, it is a shot I took before I left and the rain battered it to confetti. Cafe au lait? Perhaps.

But enough of the pretties. That’s it for the year. I will have enough to make a few bunches for the market and the neighbours. But it’s slim pickings. And soggy out there.

Let me show you the last, last, very last ripe tomato salad of the year.

November tomatoes. Not bad. I just need to wade out and find the basil. And have a rummage for the mozzarella at the back of the fridge.