WEEDS

What are weeds? Wikipedia tells me that ‘A weed is a plant considered undesirable in a particular situation, “a plant in the wrong place”. Fine and good but it doesn’t make my life any easier on the allotment.

I often wish that everything grew as well as the weeds – I would have a bumper crop every time. Never mind – get down to it and keep weeding.

This is going to be my new net cage. So far it remains empty but I have got a large roll of green netting so first thing in the spring I shall make a cage out of it and it’ll have cabbages growing there – one more net to help with the rotation.

STILL GOING STRONG

I went away for almost two weeks and thought that I would find a bit of wilderness on the farm. Not so, everything survived well. My very good friend Irene watered the plants in the greenhouse and thanks to that I had a lovely crop of delicious tomatoes.

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That was a nice surprise because I started growing in the greenhouse rather late. I think these might be Gardener’s delight – I found the plant growing on a path! Gave it a good home and this is my reward.

I had the usual stalwarts – carrots and parsnips, also a very nice cabbage. Long may it continue.

 

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As usual, whenever I go away, I looked to buy some different seeds. I was in luck this time. Found a new seed company and managed to get some seeds – white onion. Not the little pearl onions as I know but full-size ones. I tasted them whilst away and they are very nice, mild and sweet. We shall see how I get on.

AT LAST

Every time I harvest my carrots I think of my Granddad who never grew them as the soil on his allotment was very stony. I think I have reached my desired result

Of course not all of them are like these but on the whole I’m happy.

ZUCCA DA MARMELLATA

Or a squash but that doesn’t sound so good – Zucca da Marmellata has a certain ring to it.

This is the second year of growing these monsters – last year was good but I think this one is even better. I saved the seeds from my biggest specimen last year and used them in the spring. The plants started well and the grew and grew….

Last weekend was a bit windy and wet and even though the plants climbed fine on the structures I made for them, the combination of their weight and the wind meant that a part of my building effort came dow.

I had to harvest 3 of the squashes – no problem, they keep fine, as long as they have a longish stalk.

The big one looks very much like the big squash from last year and it weighs the same – 7 kilo!! Now I have to find a recipe how to make the tasty marmalade.

TLC

I have got a few fruit trees on the allotment, mainly apple trees but also a couple of pear trees. The pear tree was a few years ago a poorly specimen, it was on an overgrown and neglected plot. I just had to rescue it. I moved it on autumn to my plot where I have the plum tree and a small Bramley. First of all it didn’t do much – it survived the move. The next year it didn’t even flower. But this year, all of a sudden, it started growing and it also flowered. Because of where it is I didn’t really keep an eye on it but when I thought I should check if there is some fruit, I was in for a surprise!

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I’m sure it is a conference pear; they’re very tasty, crisp and sweet, as they should be.

One of my apple trees is a James Grieve, I bought it again a number of years ago. Even though it is classed as a cooking apple, it is very nice to eat fresh. Crisp, very juicy. This is the first year I have got a good harvest.

The trees are paying back in kind – yummy fruit. There are a few more trees on my plot, later varieties.

RESULTS

The weather is helping – sudden spell of warm weather and everything is doing very well. Of course we have to protect things like cabbages against twin attack from pigeons and cabbage white but it is worth it!

The same goes for sweetcorn – protection not against pigeons but squirrels – they cause havoc on the allotment. I decided to try to grow sweetcorn inside my large cabbage cage and it has worked!

I started growing in my new greenhouse a bit late but my cucumber plant managed against the odds…

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…and next year will be great, I can see that now.

Last job yesterday. after harvesting 2 large sacks of potatoes was planting two new strawberry beds. I decided to do it this way, it’ll be easier to throw the net over to protect the crop against the birds.

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The main potatoes are harvested but the late ones, to be ready for Christmas (I hope), are doing very well. I had to earth them up and will be putting the fertiliser on very soon.

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FIGS

The fig harvest is here!

Managed to pick 1,3 kg of figs from my trees – one is on the farm and two in the back garden. I never thought I would be able to eat my freshly picked figs – in the Midlands!

Global warming??

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ANOTHER PIECE OF LAND

This is only a little square of land, it makes sense to add it to my extending area of growing. It was next to my latest acquisition – the greenhouse – and it was rather neglected. It took three days and about 10 wheelbarrow loads of bindweed roots to shift but now all is perfect.

From this – the other part was ever so easy compared to this little strip of land

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to this

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I’ve got plans for this plot – fruit trees and bushes.