Early March Sunday

What a gorgeous day, and what better way to spend it than having a chilled out allotment session.

To start we investigated the drip watering system, which unfortunately appears to be missing a filter and flow valve. I need to sort an e-mail out to the place I bought it for. We know what we need to hook it up to the water tank though, so jobs a good-un. We also moved the planters that used to hang at mid-level in the greenhouse and bolted a contraption to the shed for them to hang on. A couple of strawberry plants that Daz bought have gone in there.

Most of the beds are now prepared, including the perennial bed at the bottom which has a single rhubarb plant in it, the roots bed which got some carrots sown and the salad bed which got various different kinds sown.

Lots of chicken manure pellets spread around and a homebrew hit the spot at lunch-time (which for me was a biscuit).


New year

So the obligatory forgetting to post thing again. We're into March now and preparation at least, if not work in earnest, has begun on the allotment.

The ground has been pretty frosty so digging time has been a struggle, but I did manage to get a potato bed dug over and manured. I also grabbed some seed potatoes from Beanies in Crookesmoor and have them in trays in the spare room chitting.

Daz has spent some time adding additional glass to the greenhouse, and between us we've built a very Heath Robinson water collection system. We've got guttering round the greenhouse to collect the water and a water tank stood up on a set of plastic greenhouse shelves perched on a pallet with legs attached. It actually may give us the opportunity to grow some tumbling fruit like a strawberry or tumbling tomato. Also there is an overflow on the water tank, so we may be able to get another water butt attached. I ordered a micro irrigation kit for about 7 quid from ebay. Next visit we should be able to roughly assemble it and test flow rates, etc. The aim is that the greenhouse, now using built wooden planters, will be automatically watered, and that if we all go on holiday we can just top up the tank and have it drain out gradually over  a week or so.

I grabbed some el-cheapo propagators and have some seeds started off - a couple of cabbage varieties and some peppers for now. Germination from the cabbages (one has gone nuts), but not yet from the peppers.


Time off

I had a fortnight off work so managed to get up the plot a few times, which was nice. Did some weeding, a bit of skimming of weeds and carpet laying and sowed some salad as a catch crop in the end of the potato bed.

I also put some baskets on the shed walls and filled them with flowers, for some prettiness for the ladies and planted Calendula, also for prettiness, but mainly because the petals are edible.


Weird weather

The odd weather we've had, really up and down temperatures and not enough rain really hurt us earlier on in the year I think.

I've been getting up a few times during the week, and spent a lot of time up there this weekend. The major job to do was sorting out the hedges, but Daz made short work of that with some borrowed petrol trimmers. We did a few bits and pieces, leant on a spade quite a bit and enjoyed a few beers up there. Later on Jen & Gemma joined us and we barbecued some meat and drank a few more beers. All in all a very nice day.

I've got a fortnight off at the moment, so plan on spending a bit of time pootling around up there, maybe knocking a few jobs off the list. Yesterday I bolted a couple of baskets to the shed walls - next step is pop something trailing and pretty in there to liven the shed up a little bit. Next to the herbs in Jen's little herb garden I also planted Calendula, again to give a splash of colour and because it's petals are edible! (got to make everything usable).

After some slight moaning from Gemma, I turned my attention to our back lawn and attacked it with a strimmer/lawnmower. I think we need some large tubs planted up with flowers to keep her happy. I think I'll wander up the plot after lunch though and maybe start skimming the top off the paths by the shed in order to lay some membrane or carpet down, even temporarily. Also one half of the beans/peas that were planted didn't germinate, so we're going to heavily weed that section and leave it until the autumn then replant some beans that we can overwinter. Daz found a roll of horticultural fleece that should come in handy for that.



I haven't updated here for a while. The plot is looking fairly good, with most stuff planted and coming through. Some problems with the sweetcorn and squash that got planted out. It took a hammering from a massive hailstorm that we had in Sheffield, and we've had some crappy weather too which hasn't helped.



I got up the plot early on Sunday and had a nightmare digging over the top bed which had already been dug over the week before. It was as clumpy as hell and quite hard going. I got Parsnips and some Carrots (Early Nantes) planted in there and also got the potatoes (Charlotte and Pink Fir Apple) planted in bed C. I left before Daz & Jen got there - I think they were planting onions and garlic later on.

Additional Propagation

The Sweetcorn went nuts and grew massively so I have pulled it out and put in alongside the tiny chilli plants. Squash -Crown Prince, Squash -Butternut Butterboy F1 and Celeriac -Brilliant.