Allotment – 8th and 9th July 2015

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The best bit about being on leave is that I can go to the allotment during the day pretty much as often as I like.  The other good thing is that going frequently means I get a chance to actually get the whole plot under control.  So having tackled the right hand side (looking from my shed) of the plot I was also able to have a clear out, re-organise and plant of the left hand side.

Lots of the garden centers have their vegetable plants on offer at the moment – I guess because it’s getting late in the season, but with how the weather has been I think we’re in for a funny year anyway, so I’ve been merrily planting some extra bits and pieces in the hope I’ll be lucky!

My recent additions included some beef tomatoes (because I didn’t have enough already…), a couple more chilli plants, cauliflower, green cabbage, red cabbage, purple basil, pineapple sage and leeks.

I’ve stripped one of the planters out and that has now been sown with some salads – hopefully we’ll get some later summer lettuce and radishes.

The best addition though has to be the rather smart anti-butterfly cage my other half managed to make using scrap from behind the shed.

We are now the proud owners of every thunderbug on the allotment, but hopefully it’ll be enough to stop the cabbages being eaten!


Allotment 31st March 2015

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Mental weather here at the moment!  Went to the allotment today but was only able to stay for a little while before the weather just became too much.  This is the back end of my allotment and there used to be a 6′ high wooden fence here, it’s a little bit flatter now!  There is also now officially no felt left on the old shed i inherited.  Definitely a job that is going to require doing this summer.

Happily though I have a rather handsome row of French Breakfast Radishes coming through.  This made me a happy bunny.  The other radishes in rows on either side are emerging too but these are definitely the current leaders.  I planted the seeds on 7th March so I’m pretty pleased considering the weather then took a turn for the cooler and is only just warming up again.


Unfortunately our strimmer broke today.  Strimming is the job my other half does at the allotment so it left him at a little bit of a loose end. However he dismantled it and has located the problem, now to track down a new part.  On the plus side the engine still works and he was carrying it round “vroom vroom”ing at me.  At least it made us smile through the rain!

Will try again on Friday – hopefully it’ll be a little less windy and a bit more productive!

Happy allotmenting. xx

Garden – Thursday 26th March 2015

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I finally collected my Thompson and Morgan order for post office today.  The package was too big to fit through the letter box on Monday and I’ve just not gotten round to it until today.  It was pretty exciting, I’d completely forgotten what I’d ordered so it was a lovely surprise!

I’ve found some interesting radishes to grow – Chinese radishes which I gather are hotter and ideal for using in stir fries.  It looks like they’ll take a little longer to grow than salad radishes and can be grown in to the winter as well.  Varieties are China Rose and Dragon.

Snake gourds were purchased for novelty value.  My other half has 2 kids so i thought they might be fun for them to paint a the end of the summer.

Following my Olmec post I did a bit more research and discovered growing that combination of crops is known as the “three sisters” and there is a really interesting wikipedia article about it here – although I will definitely be laying off on the rotting eels… So I’ve done another grow bag this time with all three crops in.  My order contained some climbing Borlotti beans with the rather snazzy name of Firetongue so I’ve put those in with Swift sweetcorn and Harrier Butternut Squash.

Fancy carrots are a favourite of mine this year, so to accompany the regular orange varieties I’ve also purchased some Purple Sun, Purple Haze and Yellowstone.  Some of those are going in planters in the garden as well and will be accompanied by a ring of Lilia, Lisbon and Apache spring onions.

I’ve heard that mint is a great companion plant to grow with peas so I’ll be starting off some pots of that to be planted at the allotment – I’m hoping it’ll staying the pots otherwise I will not be popular with my future successor! Talking of peas I’ve found a dwarf, virtually leaf less variety called Bingo that looked interesting so they’re in a pot on the patio too.  I’m really looking forward to having a few veg plants at home for grabbing quickly when I don’t have time at to get to the allotment.

Finally, a few more coloured dwarf beans Concodor which is yellow, some Splendido which are a Borlotti variety and Amethyst a purple skinned bean.  I find dwarf beans really heavy croppers so only a few plants of each are required and we’ll have another freezer full to last us next winter.

Well, enough about seeds for now, hoping to get down the allotment properly this weekend.

Happy growing. xx

Saturday 7th March 2015 – Allotment

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My plan is to record what I get up to at home and at my allotment. Hopefully it’ll help me keep a track of what I’ve been doing, and share that with people who are interested.

It was a beautiful day on Saturday, really warm and the sun was out.  I took the dog with me, and she had a fantastic time sun bathing.  It’s so lovely to finally have a bit of warmth and not need a coat on all the time.

It’s probably a bit early, although not as early as it was when I planted them, but I put my sweet peas out in the plot.  I had 11 plants that were getting a bit big for my little greenhouse at home so we’ll see how they go!

I got my spuds in too, I’ve never grown them in the ground before so it’s a bit of an experiment for me.  I’m growing two varieties this year – Albert Bartlett Vivaldi and another variety called Swift.  The Swifts are an early crop, and the Vivaldi a main.  I’ve only ever been involved with field scale potatoes so planting 5 of each was a bit smaller than I’ve experience before!

I’ve put my first runs of parsnip, carrots, radishes and spring onions in too. Chantenay, Caracas and Cosmic Purple are the carrot varieties I have chosen this year.  The parsnips are Arrow – and I really must be more patient with them this year if I want a crop!  The spring onions are near by and I’m hoping they’ll help deter the carrot fly. Definitely need to buy some netting for that too.

I love radishes because they grow quickly – I’ve gone for French Breakfast, Amethyst, Rainbow Mix and Cherry Belle to give some variety.

I’ve put out some Pak Choi as well.  I’ve not grown this from seed before, but after a bolting disaster with the part grown ones I bought from the garden center last year I thought I would give this a try instead.  The packet said to plant early for small greens and then come June you can plant for mature plants, so hopefully we’ll have some baby greens for stir fry in a couple of months time.

Well, that’s what I got up to on Saturday and probably enough for now! Have a lovely day.

Happy gardening. A x