Meet Honey Bear, the beginnings of an acorn squash. It is the first year we have grown this variety and as we are all painfully aware it hasn’t been ideal conditions to judge the performance of this delicious sounding squash that unfortunately needs a long growing period in which to perform to its utmost. That description unfortunately needed a long sentence to perform to its utmost. That, however, is OK as the sun will shine until November and everything will be a little askew but get there in the end. The blurb tells us it is a compact plant, producing ridged dark green fruit concealing sweet orange flesh which grow to the perfect size to share with your own personal honey. This year we have decided to try a new method for growing some of our courgettes and pumpkins, inspired by an article in the Soil Association magazine. It is a variation on the “growing in a hay bale” method called “growing in a pile of grass mowings” (I may have made this up). Anyone who has put their hand inside a pile of grass clippings will know that it doesn’t take long before a great deal of heat is generated within. This makes a perfect hot water bottle for the roots of the squashes, acts as a mulch to suppress weeds whilst it is getting started and adds organic matter to the soil. To quote the bard “The Winner Takes it All”, or was that Abba? It is also powdery mildew tolerant so will thrive in the coming balmy weather. Of course it is rather late and should be twice the size by now, but it will catch up, all us late starters do.