Saturday, 26 September 2009

late September sunshine

Things have been a bit quiet on the allotment front this last couple of weeks. Went up today and was pleasantly surprised at how well the Snowball turnips are progressing. We thinned them out and, rather than chuck them on the compost, we've transplanted the thinnings into the remaining space in bed 4. It was only after they had all been watered in that Cloddigger wondered whether or not he actually like turnips. Well, he's going to have plenty of chances to decide if they all grow!

'Snowball' turnips - today's thinnings transplanted to the right of the main turnip row

Some of our brassicas have been suffering from wooly aphids so have been sprayed. Hopefully this has dealt with the problem and the plants will recover enough to grow to maturity.

Another pesky problem is our resident mole(s). It/they appear particularly fond of the brassicas bed so we've been looking into humane methods of repelling them. The best bet looks to be solar powered sonic stakes. These clever devices are placed into the ground and emit sonic waves which irritate the moles thus encourgaing them to move on elsewhere. I couldn't find anywhere locally which sells them so I'll be ordering online. I'll let you know how successful these devices are once we've given them a go for a couple of weeks.

Pests aside, other crops appear to be doing well. The potatoes are going great guns and the first tender shoots of beetroot & garlic have made an appearance. The petite pois are now big enough not to be tempting to birds, so I removed their protective wire cloches and have fitted pea netting to their wig wam.

September continues to delight us with its warm, balmy days so it is an absolute pleasure to spend lots of time at the lottie. The nights are starting to draw in now and I'm sure it won't be long before we're having to think about putting out the protective fleeces and cloches.

The lottie today enoying late September sunshine

Sunday, 13 September 2009

growing, weeding, watering

Yesterday was a beautiful day and perfect for doing some odd jobs at Site 2. Even though it was only 6 days since our last visit loads of growing had been going on. Potatoes, onions and shallots are doing really well and the swede thinnings from Mum I planted out last week are beginning to pick up.

It wasn't only the veggies growing well but also the weeds! We did a lot of weeding (as my aching thighs will testify to) but I think it is definitely worth keeping on top of it. As it has been dry for the last few days we made sure everything was well watered.

Just about all our 4 beds are filled up with the exception of bed 1 (in the foreground with black tiles on it) which has the Jerusalem artichokes growing out of shot. We'll probably just put weed control matting down on it over winter ready for planting up next Spring. There is still a little bit of space remaining in bed 4 (potatoes and root veg) so may sow more parsnips and turnips.

Bed 3 has broad beans (which are growing a little too well - I wish they'd slow down a bit!), onions, leeks, shallots and chives; all of which seem to be thriving

Cloddigger grabbing a quick cup of coffee while admiring the marigold bed. These are such great plants - they've flowered twice this season, which is brilliant considering they were all abandoned plug plants rescued from a compost heap!
Looking round at neighbouring plots, there are signs that Autumn is truly beginning to set in with summer crops coming to the end, beds being cleared and bonfires being lit. A timely reminder that we need to be doing some clearing ourselves up at Site 1; that'll be a job for during the week I think.

Monday, 7 September 2009


As anyone who follows this blog will know, a few months ago Cloddigger, My Folks and I took on an overgrown plot (dubbed Site 2) which we have cleared and taken back to bare soil. During the clearing process we came across a fair amount of rubbish and rubble, most of which was disposed of.

Some of it, though, proved to be rather interesting to one of us at least and ended up being crafted into very beautiful and unique object. To find out more about the piece "Unearthed", check out the Woodwose Carving website.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

autumn planting

Well, the holidays are well and truly over and we find ourselves back into the usual work & school routine. Things are shaping up rather well at Site 2 with the beds filling up rapidly.

To date we have sown / planted:

  • Jerusalem artichokes

  • Peas

  • Sprouts

  • Broccoli

  • Cabbage

  • Cauliflower

  • Swede

  • Broad beans

  • Spring onions

  • Onions

  • Shallots

  • Garlic

  • Potatoes

  • Carrots

  • Parsnip

  • Beetroot

  • Red currants

  • Gooseberry

There's still some room left in a couple of the beds so we're deciding what to fill them with. Considering some more potatoes at the end of the root veg bed - it may be slightly late to get them in for harvesting this year so I need to consult my books.

view of our half of the plot this afternoon