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Best Week So Far

With several warm and sunny days since the beginning of this month, (although the weather befits April), I have been out and about on my plots, sowing, planting, digging and weeding, most of the time that daylight would allow. Converting the 4 small vegetable beds on N2 Plot into 2 larger beds is approximately 50% completed with the digging and path clearing aspect being a little slow due to heavy showers now and again, holding up progress. My fruit bush bed on N1 Plot also needed weeding and the lower half of it required weeding and turning, due to the fact it had lain fallow since I removed the Summer raspberries from it, last year. I estimated that approximately 150 current bushes had self seeded in this area, from the parent bushes. I am currently in the process of lifting and potting up these tiny bushes, no quick task on damp clay. Due to the recent alternating hot, then showery cool weather, many plants have now at last started to develop quickly around the plots. Main crop potato plants look in particularly good condition as do my carrots and sweetcorn. Lettuce is another plant that likes the cooler showery conditions along with cabbages, all of which are progressing well so far. After a couple of heavy rain showers this week my runner beans have finally (almost) reached the top of their bean poles, (most of them anyway). The majority of fruit seems to be developing well, although not as abundant as last year, the individual fruits appear to be larger, in particular my currants. My asparagus plants at the top of N1 Plot are developing very slowly and have been attacked twice so far by asparagus beetle. I removed a dozen of these beetles from around the plants yesterday, after which the bed was hoed and then the whole area sprayed with lemon scented soap spray. (No sign of the beetles today).  One particular problem this year has seen many plants attacked by slugs and snails. These annoying little b*****s have taken a particular liking to some of my french climbing beans, squashes, pumpkins, runner beans and cucumbers, many of which had to be re-sown. Having sown 5 lots of spring onions so far this year only 1 sowing has germinated. This is the first time ever I have had difficulty growing these useful veggies. Parsnips have also been a problem this year too with none germinating from 2 separate sowings. When I constructed the raised beds on N2 Plot last year the intention was to use them as seed beds. The majority of veggies sown into these beds have been devoured by slugs/snail. Due to this I have now decided to use the beds for growing various herbs in. Although I don't normally grow broad beans, this years harvest has been very good and the beans are currently residing in my freezer, with the final picking to be done within the next few days.
Desiree
Bed 2 N2 Plot Main Crop Potatoes 8/June/14
A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to obtain a rotavator extremely cheaply from my local re-cycling center, so my old Howard Bantam has been sold. Having fitted a new spark plug to my latest aquasition and some tinkering with the air filter it was up and running within half an hour. Due to the recent deluges of rain, some more modifications have been carried out to the guttering and rain water down pipes around my shed on N2 Plot and another large plastic water tank was put in place alongside the shed. One of the guttering end stops was replaced with the obligatory plastic milk bottle with a pipe connected to it using duct tape, ensuring that the water from the guttering flowed into the tank. So far this year only rainwater has been used on my plots, with no need to use water from the mains tanks situated around our allotments. My poly tunnel is now, almost devoid of pots and trays containing various seedlings, which have been planted out. Yard long beans, tomatoes (moneymaker), black eyed beans, cucumbers (marketmore) and watermelons (sugar baby) have been planted into the ground areas of the poly tunnel. My next project is to erect a fruit cage around the currant growing bed on N1 Plot and after the strawberries have finished fruiting, they will be transferred into this bed alongside the currant bushes, protected by the cage. Any 3 years or older plants will be replaced with plants from last years runners which at the moment are growing in pots.

N1 Plot L-Shaped Bed Runner beans/Lettuce 8/June/14

N1 Plot L-Shaped Bed Runner beans/Marrows 8/June/14




L-Shaped Bed N1 Plot Potatoes/Rhubarb/ Strawberries in Barrels
N1 Plot Lower End of L-Shaped Bed Main crop Potatoes/Rhubarb/Strawberries in Barrels 8/June/14

Fruit Bushes N1 Plot 8/June/14












Grapevine N1 Plot
Grapevine N1 Plot by Shed 8/June/14


Strawberries
Strawberries N1 Plot 8/June/14


Main bed N2 Plot
French beans Sweetcorn Lettuce Peas Broad beans N2 Plot Main Bed 8/June/14









Roots Bed N1 Plot
Roots Bed N1 Plot 8/June/14

Sage
Sage Plant Attracting Bees for the Runner beans N1 Plot 8/June/14











Herb Robert
Herb Robert by Shed N1 Plot 8/June/14




Grapevine (Muscat Blue) Growing Across Shed Roof N2 Plot 8/June/14
















Water Harvesting 8/June/14
New Water Tank & Pipework N2 Shed 8/June/14

4 Beds Into 2 N2 Plot 8/June/14
N2 Plot Making 4 Beds Into 2 (8/June/14)









Comments

  1. I'm sure the slugs and snails are eating things this year that they don't usually.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely Sue, I've even had a large rhubarb leaf completely eaten away. Funny thing is I've only lost 1 lettuce so far, maybe its a change of taste!

      Delete
  2. So many varieties, and all look so stunning. The runner bean plot looks so promising. I think no bugs are stopping by there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Endah. The runner beans have mainly escaped damage by the bugs with only a few attacked by slugs and snails.

      Delete
  3. Wow, your veggies have come on quickly - and well, in view of the bad start to the year! You have Runner Beans flowering already. Mine have only just begun climbing! Your first photo, the one with the vast sea of potatoes - is a real joy to behold!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Mark. I was noticeable that some of the runner beans were flowering early, even in their pots before I planted them out. I put it down to temperature fluctuations. I'm really pleased with the potato plants this year, it just goes to show that even the deluges of rain earlier in the year have been helpful along with some cooler conditions.

      Delete

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