Sunday 28 May 2017

Spring update, more weeding & more planting.

The Borlotti Beans we planted last weekend have taken & growing well. 
Some are even twisting around the canes already.

I always thought they would follow the sun so twist clockwise, but if you look closely they actually twist anti clockwise, wonder why?
We dug over this patch again, added some horse manure and planted out 24 Sweetcorn seedlings that we started off in cells in the greenhouse. 
As you can see they are planted in blocks (not rows) to aid pollination, approx 18" (45cm) apart.

Two varieties, Earlybird & Kelvedon Glory, both F1 so should be good!
The Broad Beans are doing well, as you can see now in flower, so the beans will  form soon. 

Some of the ones we put in earlier in the year, even have beans forming.
Early Potatoes Winston & Charlotte looking good. 
In the background the Picasso mains are coming through & the Cara (on another patch) are coming through too.

We planted 2 Pumpkins straight into the horse muck pile. 

They will do so well here with all that muck to feed on!
Not a bad harvest today:

Asparagus (Stewarts Purple)
Rhubarb (Stockbridge Arrow)
Strawberries (an early variety)

We had the Asparagus in a Risotto & the Strawberries with Ice Cream for dinner tonight, so tasty they were.
Two Courgettes planted between the Borlotti Beans and the Sunflowers. 

We have planted more Courgettes around the plot, we always say 'why so many Courgettes' we will never learn! 
I've started clearing this patch, where the Leeks were. 
We still have lots to put in, so will go here. 
Dug out lots of weeds so when dry will burn in the incinerator bin, as we did today.

Was a lovely day today, warm but a little overcast, we are expecting much needed rain overnight as our rain barrels are empty! 
But the well still has water in it, so we do have water.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo.

Sunday 21 May 2017

Beans, Sunflowers and Pheasants!

So as the title says: 

Beans and we planted the Borlotti Beans started off in the greenhouse. 
I placed a circle of cardboard, under the cane wigwams, weighted down with a brick to suppress the weeds.
A row of Sunflowers, these are 'Pikes Peak' and are supposed to grow up to 15ft tall. 
I put plenty of compost & growmore in the soil before planting and loads of crushed egg shells on the surface as tender sunflowers are a favourite of Slugs & Snails! 
Look, almost Strawberry harvest time, its usually end of May early June so well on time.
The Brassicas we planted last w/e have taken and doing well, the netting doing its job well.
And this is what we are protecting our Brassicas from! 

This handsome chap and his Mrs were walking around our plot as I arrived today. 
They have been scratching around my spuds too. Damn Pheasants!
Well another 5 hours on the plot, got loads done again, including more digging/weeding to get yet another bed ready for planting. 
We still have more Beans, Sweetcorn, Peas, Courgettes, Squashes & Sunflowers to plant out.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo

Sunday 14 May 2017

Brassica planting!

First I cleared this patch of last years spuds, weeds and roots, dug it over, raked it and added lime. 
I then planted 10 rows of assorted Brassicas: Sprouts, Cauliflowers, Calabrise & Broccoli. 
We covered the hoops with netting before we left.
Been earthing up the early spuds again, almost daily now. 
I noticed a bit of frost/wind damage on the leaves, but they will recover.
So while I planted Brassicas (see above) Jo hoed between the Onions, looks a lot better and the Onions are swelling after the recent rain.
 So today it was our 31st Wedding Anniversary and a lovely day to celebrate it on the Allotment.
Lovely Apple Blossom. 
We have Gooseberries already!
So it was a lovely sunny day & we spent a good 5 hours, planting, weeding & general allotment maintenance. 
More Rhubarb & Asparagus was harvested today too.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo

Monday 8 May 2017

More Potatoes planted, other jobs too.

On Tuesday I planted more spuds, so this patch is full now. 

2 rows of 1st early Winson, 3 rows of 2nd early Charlotte & now 5 rows of Picasso mains. 
This 'chitted' Cara potato is ready to go in, it has short, stubby, dark green shoots, if yours have long thin pale shoots, rub them off and start again by placing in a light cool place, or try planting without 'chitting' the jury is out on this debate whether to 'chit' or not.
So on Sunday, after digging over this patch & removing as much of the weeds as I could, I planted out the Cara, 5 rows with 7 in each. 
We also planted out some Broad Beans that we started at home. 
In the fleece dome at the back are some Brassicas (sprouts, cabbage, cauliflowers etc) protected from the birds & waiting to go in.
Gave the shed a much needed new coat of preservative, will need to do again to build up the colour and protection of 'Red Cedar'
Another harvest of Rhubarb & Asparagus, the first of the season.
So plenty done including a bonfire to burn all those weeds that have been drying and bit more ground preparation for all those crops waiting to go in.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo