Maybe it’s a sign of my age, but I am getting quite a taste for purple.

I don’t really have time for blogging. There’s a scary deadline to meet and I must find thousands of words to put together before the end of the month.  But, hell, I am going to treat myself to a few minutes of posting some purple pictures to mark the end of a very mixed year in the vegetable garden.  I don’t like to tell you what the slugs did to an otherwise monster crop of potatoes in the new patch but I suspect slugs had a lot to do with the Irish potato famine.  However the beans were fantastic: good to eat and beautiful to look at.

In a moment I will look up the Marshall’s catalogue to see what the variety is called. I picked them simply for their looks in the colour pictures and after a slowish start they have not been a disappointment.  This is how they looked once they finally started to flower.


Meanwhile, the dwarf French beans were cropping heavily with the more common or garden green pods.  By early September I was beginning to fear the purple flowers would not produce a bean. Wrong.


There were also some old fashioned runner beans called Celebration with pretty peach pink flowers but I didn’t manage to photograph them.

A quick look in next year’s Marshall’s catalogue shows that the purple bean is called Empress, ‘high yielding and stringless with excellent flavour’.  And, though I was so discouraged by the subterranean slime thugs I sometimes thought of giving up vegetable growing altogether, just flicking the pages I am very tempted to try a few other gorgeous looking crops for next year.

Take a look at this new asparagus pea with scarlet flowers and the purple artichoke called Violet Globe.  Oh, and there’s a new purple carrot called Purple Haze. Irresistible!  Better get a  bumper box of slug eating Nematodes too.