Sunday 27 April 2014

Brilliant end to April

Been another busy end to the week, got lots done, digging, weeding & planting. It's all on the video, link below.

But as the sun was shining why not get lots done, quite a few cups of tea brewed too :)
Another good harvest of Rhubarb, we pulled a few stalks yesterday for a Crumble pie tonight, but had a stalk left over, so I pulled another 3-4lb as I need that much for a gallon of Wine.

We also harvested some Asparagus and made a quick pan of soup for lunch, it was so tasty so here is the recipe link so you can try it too: 

We are so excited that our Apple trees 'Cox Orange Pippin'  are producing lots of blossom, I did some drastic pruning in Jan/Feb and it has worked, it has produced far more Blossom than last year, a year after it was planted. 

So as I said check out my You Tube video for more Allotment fun, link below.

Thanks for reading and viewing. Ian

Sunday 20 April 2014

Busy Easter Weekend

Well I started the weekend on Saturday by incorporating the manure into the soil here with my Rotovator. So today I planted 36 'Cara' main Potatoes in 4 rows. 
The space was a bit tight, so planted them a bit closer than I would normally, each row 28" between, each seed spud 14" apart, this wont make much difference except the spuds might be a bit smaller. But as Cara are usually massive this will be fine.
Another job that needed doing was this corner by the Shed where the rain barrels are, the path was full of soil, weeds (nettles etc) so dug all that out, nettles etc burned! and re-laid the weed suppression fabric and a good pile of woodchips on top.   
Sunday: I got another 4 pallets (2 lots of 2 nailed together) up as a replacement fence between us & neighbour. Not much left to do, only one more 2 pallet panel to go, before I can have a break from it. 
Our neighbour has fruit bushes in flower at the moment, so will replace the fence along that patch in the autumn/winter.  
Already earthed up the first early 'Winston' potatoes a few times they are coming through and getting taller daily, the 'Sante' potatoes I put in a few weeks ago are also just showing. 

We've also got Asparagus coming up daily, already cut 3, another 9 almost ready to cut today & even more appearing :) Rhubarb is massive too, so harvesting this every time we visit!
Just love this colourful patch, with Spinach on the left, Rainbow Chard front right and soon a patch of Poppies that have been sown, back right. Under the netting tunnel is Kale, for us & our Chickens :) 
We have also sown a patch of BBC Countryfile 'Grow Wild' wild flowers.
So a busy Easter weekend, I think we have spent 10 hours! 5 today & 5 yesterday. 
Still Monday to go but think we have something else to do in the morning! 

Bank Holiday Monday: 
I moved the remaining pallets, stacked back into the corner, might make a Bug Hotel out of them, then started to dig over the compacted soil, removing some big roots, bind weed & ground elder, planning to use the space reclaimed for Squashes & Pumpkins, the netting frame on the right has Cabbages in it, we weeded that a week ago. In the foreground is a patch of self seeded Poppies that we might leave for the Bees.
And another harvest of Rhubarb, that's over 4lb we have taken so far this spring. 

Time for a video next w/e so keep checking.

Thanks for returning/reading. Ian

Sunday 13 April 2014

April Planting Weekend

Such a lovely weekend.
Good job too, had lots to do, planting, clearing, weeding & burning!

But first, the planting of Potatoes, getting my 2nd early Charlotte in, the 3rd to be planted, still have 2 more to go!
As you can see here they have 'chitted' well, lots of people ask me how 'chit' them, some even show pics of long pale shoots.

But as you can see here these have short stubby, dark colour shoots which are perfect for planting.
Our first harvest proper of 2014.

Rhubarb & Spring Onions, If you watch the video you will also see another crop almost ready for picking.
So as I said a lovely weekend, no rain, some sun, but a bit windy.

But still perfect for digging, planting & weeding.

Watch the video too, lots more to see.

 Thanks for reading/returning & watching. Ian

Saturday 5 April 2014

April Showers

My view from the shed while it's raining! But at least it was only one of many showers today. 

But things are growing well, spotted the first Asparagus spear poking through, wont be long now the others will follow.
We noticed the Frog spawn had disappeared and now we have thousands of Tadpoles all around the shallow edge of the pond, and a few on this Lily pad. 

Its great the Frogs returned to spawn in our little pond. 
The Rhubarb is getting bigger by the day, the mix of sunshine & rain lately will have helped, as it has for all crops. 

The Kale & Cabbages are so much bigger now too. 

Still no sign of the early Potatoes I put in on March 16th, but expect any day now I will see the first shoots poking through the soil.
The Cox's Orange Pippin apple trees we put in in 2011 have over wintered well and my pruning didn't do any harm, in fact I think it has helped. 

Just look at all the buds, we only got 1 apple last year, so hoping for a few more this year. 
I did a spot of digging and weeding over the week, to make room for more Potato planting, if you look on the old broken fence (to be replaced soon) you can see a Robin who has been visiting regularly and searching the dug over soil for grubs & worms. 
I'm sure there is a nest close by, as visits are about 5-10 mins apart. 

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian