Monday 27 April 2020

More isolation hours on the plot

The front of our plot looks a lot better now (ignore the bags of weeds) I used free paving slabs to make a hard area, to store stuff & park the car on, although we dont come down in the car much. The bags are full of weeds & roots, as we dont burn them anymore and waiting for the local tip to re-open when Covid-19 lockdown ends, so we can dump them for turning into compost. 
Earlier in the week, Jo started clearing the paths in the fruit area, was the cage before the storms in January flattened it! 
Our site got a surprise delivery of woodchips, so Jo & I barrowed quite a lot to our plot & I started re-newing the fruit area paths, see below to see more.
This patch now has 2 rows of Chard, a row of Brussel Sprouts & a row of Kale. The foreground shows the Cauliflowers we put in a few weeks ago, Jo weeded them and they are looking good.
We are so excited as all the Asparagus that we only started a few weeks ago have come through. 

We cant harvest this year while it gets established, but next year we will get our 1st harvest.
Jo planted out 4 lots of Peas on the frame she put up last week. 
Oregon Sugarpod, Hurst Greenshaft, Meteor & Avola.
Everytime we come down, its almost daily at the moment, the Tomatoes in the Greenhouse have grown taller, but as we have been down regularly, we do water them every time.
Today, Monday. 
I put in the last of the main crop Potatoes, these are King Edward, a good one for chips etc.
So thats now 12 rows of Potatoes planted, if they all produce well we will be good for spuds well into 2021!
So today I finished the fruit area paths & made a new well head using the wood from the old front fence wood, so cost nothing.
So with all this free time, due to Covid-19, we have been isolating most days for about 5 hours down on our plot and its looking rather good.

Thanks for reading/returning. Jo & Ian

Monday 20 April 2020

Sunny weekend & week ahead

Such a busy weekend, isolation is easy on our plot. 

Jo got busy putting up a wig-wam for Sweet Peas. The cardboard is to stop the weeds popping up in the middle where its hard to reach once the Sweet Peas have climbed up the canes & strings.
Then Jo decided to empty a couple of our compost bins, she managed to fill 16 sacks with well rotted compost! 
She transfered some of the contents with lots of worms to get the now empty bin started.
I got busy planting out the next lot of 'chitted' main crop potatoes 'Maris Piper'
Three rows with 9 in each row now in the ground. 
I planted them just the same as the others I planted last week
In between the other things I have done, I've been busy changing the front of our plot, to give a hard area, with a new fence  
and gate. 
But its now full of bags of weeds and rubbish to take to the recycling centre when it re-opens after the Covid-19 lock-down.
Jo ended up sorting all the compost bins, the two on the right (with black/yellow tape) are now sealed for use next year, the three on the left are now empty and we will be filling them up over the year.
The blossom on the Cox's Orange Pippin looks lovely, we expect a good crop again this year.

Latest harvests: 
Rhubarb & Leeks.

Not in this pic:
Spring Onions.

Well we have been down to our plot almost every day so far and its looking much better. 
Who would have thought a few months ago we would have all this spare time!

Our good friend & fellow allotment holders daughter made this lovely rainbow pic for our shed window. Thanks Emma x

Keep safe, stay well & observe distancing.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo

Sunday 12 April 2020

Easter Weekend, still in isolation due to Covid-19

Time to plant out the new Asparagus that Kings delivered earlier than expected, but at least we had the bed prepared with sifted/manured soil.
Looks great now its done. 

Thanks to Jo's hard work.

So while Jo was busy, I satrted planting the main crop spuds 'Picasso'

In a trench about 6-8" deep watered well and each seed potato placed 15" apart in the bottom of the trench, then back filled.

So thats 30 Picasso planted, this patch will only take 3 more rows, which I plan to fill next weekend with 'Maris Piper'

Jo planted out 2 types of Broad Beans, the canes are to support them as they grow.

The Leeks still look good, we had some rain so hope it helped to swell them more.

We have removed the fleece from the Califlowers and replaced with netting, as they grow we will put higher hoops in so they have plenty of room. 
We need to cover these as we get Pheasants & Pigeons that love tender young veg!
This new raised bed has been filled up with sifted soil and Jo has started planting Bee friendly flowers, as this is our wildlife corner, with a log pile too.
In the greenhouse Jo added more Tomatoes, the ones put in last time have grown already. 
They like the deep soil & heat in there.

The 1st harvest of Stockbridge Arrow Rhubarb, we will be having a crumble very soon!

The Victoria Rhubarb is coming along nicely, a later variety and sweeter.

So a really good few days, Fri/Sat/Sun and we got lots done.

I've been busy at the lane end, making a new fence & gate, so check back to see my progress.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo

Sunday 5 April 2020

Another busy week isolating from Covid-19

Saturday: Potato planting time, as you can see they have 'chitted' well,  I started them back in February, so now is the time to start planting them.
So thats two rows of 'International Kidney' aka Jersey Royals & three rows of Charlotte 2nd early planted. 

I'll plant the Main crop spuds over the next few weeks to stagger harvesting.
Earlier in the week: I put new edging in along the fruit area and the next soil area, as the old edging had rotted away! 
It's made from 2nd hand decking so I put 3 coats of wood stain on, hopefully will last a bit longer.
While I was busy planting Spuds and doing D.I.Y. Jo got busy sowing seed in some raised beds, so we now have lots to come up. 
This raised bed has some that Jo sowed earlier and they have started coming up, salads etc.
Today (Sunday): Jo planted out some Tomatoes & a Cucumber in the Greenhouse, the up turned bottles are for watering, they have a spike with holes in screwed into the top, but now pushed into the soil, so gets the water to the roots.
Friday: Jo sowed some Parsnips & more Carrots, in this patch by my Carrot experiment, no sign of them yet, but as its now warmer hope it wont be much longer.
Thursday: I've been planning this for ages, a narrow path at the end of the large area wher this years spuds will be, it will protect the Apple tree roots and stop weeds coming up there too.
Sunday: Another D.I.Y job! Check my next blog to see what it is. 
The good thing is I made it from left over timber 
So a very productive week, I think we only stayed home one day!
But its the perfect way to isolate, we do see other folk on their plots, but they are so far away, there is no threat to our health.

Thanks for reading/returning. Ian & Jo