Monday, December 04, 2006

Rain (again...)

I really, really wish that it would stop raining. It has been wet and windy and generally horrible for 2 weeks now and I'm really bored of it. Autumn is well and truly depressingly grey this year.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Dying down

After what seems weeks and weeks of rain we managed to get a day of relatively nice clear weather to go up the lotty and inspect the flooding. Luckily enough the trenches that Karl dug have been fantastic at holding the water and the soil wasn't as bad as we expected.
We chatted to our neighbours opposite (Alex, Alex & Hannah) and had a wonder around the far reaches of the allotment to see a plot that Alex has just started working on.
Whilst we have been away from the allotment the Council have been in and cut down all the back of the plot to make way for more plot space. Where there used to be thick brambles it is now flat and clear land. Unfortunately the Council decided to use our plot as a dumping ground for all the spare tyres that were littered around and also broken glass. (So nice of the council to do that!) We've now got over 30 tyres on our plot which is ridiculous so we're going to give back what they put on our plot and a mini complaint too.
We've netted up the broccoli as we forgot to protect them from the birds and we've started clearing the back of the plot from couch grass and rubbish. We're going to plant as many strawberries here as possible!! They were gorgeous last year!
Progress in slow because of the daylight hours but we're getting closer to having the whole plot rid of rubbish and more planting space. :)
If I've finished my Christmas shopping next weekend then I shall get up nice and early for a digging spree (and a few trips to the skip!!)

You can see the green patches of mustard seeds growing through the soil.

Me hoeing the back of the plot.

Broccoli (bird damaged but recovering!)

Pulling back the rotten plastic.

Karl digging up the land by the sweetcorn.

Draining out all the water stuck in the wheelbarrow.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Cleaning up and digging out

Apologies for not blogging here for a while. Blogger was playing up recently and I couldn't upload any images. Grr!! Finally managed to post today tho but these photos are from the 17th-24 Sept. (a touch late!!) Okay - progress so far:
We have a gorgeous purple aubergine but I don't know how well it is going to survive in the greenhouse? We also have a bucket or two of manure which is great! We should have the best soil ever next year! I also took up the opportunity to clear out the greenhouse as it was full of rubbish and the plastic from the ground was completely ripped up and letting in bind weed! I filled in all the cracks where the soil had dried and put down mulch. It looks much better!
I have also been sorting out all the tomato plants which have fallen over everywhere and the slugs have been feasting on. We've had some pretty lovely tomatoes this year but eating them quick enough has been a task! They grow too quick! I have also quite brutally trimmed the squashes as they were growing in the road and just taking up far too much space. They grow like crazy!! We noticed a couple of butternut squashes as well but they were still quite small and green. We completely forgot that we had planted some!! We're now getting to the time of year when we eat the last of the produce and collect the seeds. We didn't go up the lotty last weekend (beginning of October) as Karl had 3 parties to go to and I was canoeing the river Wye. We're going back up today (8th Oct) to see if everything is holding up and whether the birds have stolen our sweetcorn or not?! Fingers crossed it's all OK!


Monday, September 11, 2006

Enormous Vegetables

BIG veggies! This is our first enormous pink banana squash - we may need a big knife to help put this thing in the big oven! Massive courgette/marrows on the side. These are going to be tasty....if only I knew how to cook it? Suggestions please...

Friday, September 08, 2006


Karl left to go on holiday to Turkey today and he left me this little gem on the kitchen table. I instantly cooked it up in butter and delved in. Beautiful!! Hard work never tasted so good!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

They follow me...

Just for the record - and I know many of you have seen this picture before - but how strange is it that when I went on holiday - this snail decided to follow! I can't escape them - Arrgghhh!!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

A couple of pics

I'm afraid that the allotment hasn't seen much action recently as me and Karl have been a bit pre-occupied with other things. We haven't reglected the allotment as we go up each week to collect tonnes of produce: Mostly runner beans, french beans, marrows, courgettes & tomoatoes. It has been quite successful but we are noticing that the weeds are too much for us the handle! We might turn a blind eye to the weeds for the sake of getting the produce in and then having a major soil turnover once autumn starts to kick in. Summer has become quite bleak and wet since the end of July and the weather has put us off going up there most weekends.
I'm planning to dig up the potatoes this weekend out of the tyres. They need to be taken before the slugs get in! (That's if they haven't beaten us to it!) I'm also keeping a keen eye on the sweetcorn as it's doing REALLY well! I can see us eating corn-on-the-cob for the whole of Sep/Oct! Yum!
I've got photos from about a month ago which I have not got round to posting. (My memory card died in my camera so there's about a month of mobile phone pics to upload! (most are poor quality tho).
I'm determined to have a good ole dig on Sunday so fingers crossed the weather keeps up!

Tomatoes coming up but staying green - picked about 6 red ones altogther this year.

Sweetcorn getting all furry - we have lots of these plants which have shot up!

Our enormous produce! Pink banana squashes, courgettes & marrow. Delicious!
Does anyone know what to do with pink banana squashes? They're nice roasted...

Sunday, August 13, 2006

National Allotment Week

It's National Allotment Week! (and I've just booked a holiday right in the middle of it!)

August 14th - 20th 2006 that I don't forget for next year!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

More produce...

We seem to be having a very healthy season of produce at the moment. I even found this quite chunky marrow hiding in a bit mound of soil which we planted in and kinda forgot about! Not sure what to do with it yet - we're just a bit gobsmacked that it's grown so secretly as we never noticed it before. Runner beans are fabulous, we eat them practically every night! We even have a couple of tomatoes but they're not in full swing just yet - still small and green.
The courgettes are a bit big but still very delicious - I've had a few roasted with seasoning and they're superb. At this rate I may not visit a grocers for a few months!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Onions, beans & currants

It's produce time! We've pulled up some onions (some very big - some tiny?!) and also picked some red currants (delicious!). We're just getting to the very end of the broad beans now as the black fly kinda became a bit too much to handle! (Need something more effective than washing up liquid I suspect?) I also picked some black currants which were growing wild just off the allotment car track. Gave myself a few cuts and scratches trying to get through that bramble but the currants were very sweet. I pulled up a few Maris Pipers too but I think it was a bit early for them. Quite small still. We have a couple of apple trees which the neighbours kindly said we could share as the apples are dropping on both sides of our plots. Very sweet apples - a bit like a cox apple but not quite. There are also pears on the go but they are still a bit on the small side. It's all flourishing quite nicely!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006


OMG! It's boiling hot! It's utterly sticky, humid and just plain HOT! Allotment is suffering a little so I watered it last night in hope that it will perk up a bit. There are loads of things coming up beautifully but we've also slightly neglected the plot so the broad beans have been massacred by the black fly and weeds are all over the shop! I'm hoping to make a trip at the weekend to clean it up.

As you can see from BBC weather - it is 'officially' a heatwave!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

All in flower!!

It's all go up the allotment! Runner beans have shot up, flowers in bloom and a small toad was discovered on one of the pallets! It's mildly exciting...!

The sunflowers have been hard work this year - weathered, eaten, poor growth but these 2 made it and I'm quite proud!

Hopefully some yummy seeds await?

Sweetcorn doing very well!

Squashes (and weeds - oops!)

Runner beans shooting up ever higher!

I had to pull up the rhubarb before it seeded over the whole plot! Quite pretty seeds tho.

If there was ever an allotment miracle it would be this lettuce. I found it sat quite tall and plump amongst the bed that was the slugs' favourite eating venue. We planted about 50 lettuce seeds here and all were destroyed - apart from this little one that made it! I took it home before anything else noticed it!

Must remember to put a net on the cherry tree next year - the birds got there before us!

Huge brocolli - not long now... maybe?

Tomatoes that have not turned red just yet!

Shared Apple tree with the neighbours.

The toad...hopefully feasting on slugs!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Day Twenty...?

We've got a truly fantastic crop of strawberries growing at the moment. Me & Karl have scoffed most of them already! They are really sweet and look very red! We've got 2 teepee pea canes up and 1 runner bean teepee too. Squashes have started to pop up really nicely and the broccoli has so-far survived under nets and surrounded by slug pellets. (They work really well!!)
The tomatoes in the green house have been moved outside under plastic and I've also moved the sunflowers which were housed indoors as well. I'm thinking that this was perhaps not a good idea as they have already flopped over and don't look very happy. (Fingers crossed they perk up a bit!)
I've also brought my aubergines out to plant in the greenhouse but we've run out of room for them so we are hoping to clear out the greenhouse at some point to make more room. The broad beans are ready for eating and are growing really well. Black fly has been a bit of a nuisance but otherwise - everything is doing remarkably well!


Runner beans in tee-pee.

Really superb greenery!



Runner beans!

Tomatoes & 2 Sunflowers ready to go outside.

My aubergines. I'm so proud!

Broad beans ready for eating.

Tomatoes under plastic to keep in heat and protect from birds.