Friday, May 06, 2011

Allotment Diary Me:33hrs He:28hrs

Still no rain sadly, the soil is like dust, but there were still jobs I had to do.

I picked a barrow full of rhubarb, and once prepared I had 7lb which is now in the freezer.

I made a nice mixed fruit crumble - I'll add the recipe over the weekend,

Yesterday I spent four hours up the plot on my own.
There must have been a frost as some of the tips of the potatoes were blackened.  Not much harm done, I just cut off the damaged leaves and heaped up the potatoes even higher - weeded them at the same time too.  The weeds will soon shrivel and dry.

I had previously dug out deep trenches and we filled them with lots of well rotted manure, and I added a layer of cut comfrey leaves.  These had all dried and were rotting, so I planted some Italian climbing green beans

They are wiggley shaped ones - I grew them at home last year for the first time and they were delicious.   Once planted I watered the beans well then added  yet more comfrey to keep the damp in, and when rotted they will act as a top dressing feed.

How the broad beans continue to grow without a drop of water absolutely amazes me.  But they do!

Ditto the onions - and the weeds too!
In order to keep the beans protected from the wind, and to give them a bit of respite from the unrelenting sunshine, I 'cobbled together' some pieces of netting to make a screen.  Not very pretty, but it'll do the job until they grow up and are thriving.

It was a bit of a let down (understatement) when I saw that the thistles had started appearing in the big potato bed, despite my weeding them out a couple of weeks ago.

It's just not fair that weeds grow in dry, barren, dusty soil!  My next job methinks

The winds had blown off the protection from this big bed, so I had to put it all back and secure it again.  At least it keeps it weed free.
All of the above took me four hours yesterday - now on to today's efforts.
I took these photos of the gooseberry bushes as Mr Lottie didn't believe that the berries were ripe so early.

The downside is that they are small and hard, so I really do want the rain to plump them up to perfection, and I ought to add the netting to keep the birds off too!

I so wish that I had taken before and after photos of this part of the fruit area.
It was full of weeds again - thistles and annuals.  
I cleared them all with my Azada - it was hard work but the tool does get right under the roots.

I have planted cauliflowers, cabbages, and brussel sprouts.  The frame I have made from pieces of water pipe which I cut to size.  Mr L helped me bang in some metal rods and then I slotted the pipe on top - makes a nice sturdy frame.

The plants were really well watered before I attached a lace up 'bodice'.  Well it ended up looking like one to me.  Took me absolutely ages to do!  Hopefully it will keep the birds off, and the rabbits out, and keep the moisture in.

The transplanted rhubarb cuttings could do with a drink, but as we are forecast some rain - if we are lucky - on Saturday night or Sunday, I decided not to water them and save my precious supply of rainwater.

Once the brassicas get tall, I will be able to incresae the height by pulling the pipes up the metal rods - and just sliding the the netting up one side and adding either another piece or chicken wire fencing.  Can't let those pesky pigeons or rabbits at my winter brassicas!

Mr L was kept busy cutting a nice straight edge on the front bed.

And fetching and carrying tools for me too.

Phew - we sure were tired when we got home - so it was a quick home made spaghetti bolognese for lunch.


  1. You will be very pleased to know that it is RAINING!!!

    Like you said, it does only seem to be weeds that thrive in dry, dusty soil. I've had to water all of my veggies every day. The tomato plants are needing loads of water, they look a bit limp if you don't water them every day..

    Glad that other things are growing well. I can't believe that you had frost the other night. I heard rumours, but blimey! It has been so warm. 25 celcius here today.

    Have a good weekend!

    Martin :)

  2. Rain at last here too!

    Goosgogs already?!

    My mouth was watering at the thought of your mixed fruit crumble....

    Have a great weekend.

    Sandie xx


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