TOO WET TO DIG….

…but good enough to do other work.

About three years ago I put two composter bins on one of my plots. I kept filling them with grass cutting, kitchen waste and all manner of things (but not weeds as i think it doesn’t ge hot enough to kill them).

I didn’t continue working this plot but the bins are still there and I was adding more material in.

A few days ago I managed to upend one of them and move it to the end of another plot, close to my shed. It was half empty and it looked brown and crumbly, just like the best potting compost you buy in a garden centre.

Today was the turn of the other bin – again upended and moved next to the other one near the shed. There was some dry stuff on top of both heaps and I took it to my bean trench, it helped to fill it up.

It is too good to waste so I decided to put it in bags and use it when I need to top up my raised beds in the greenhouse etc.

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The new spot for the bins, neat and tidy, in the corner of the plot, ready to be filled again.

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It was worth the wait – must do it more often – ‘forget’ to empty the bins regularly and that way will get beautiful potting compost.

…AND BUILD SOME MORE…

I have a steady supply of beautiful long willow branches because Paul is taking his sorting out very seriously. He was very kind to deliver today another huge bundle of sticks to the allotment and it din’t take very long to use up most of them .

First was this….

..a very nice, sturdy structure in one of my raised beds. This will be a home for some courgettes. They climb quite well, important is to keep them tied to the sticks. At least the fruits will be off the ground and the slugs won’t be tempted!

And of course, you can’t have too many trenches for growing climbing beans. This is a trench number two

…so this way I shall have a nice ‘bean corner’ beside my net tunnel. There is a small area left, between the trenches and the tunnel and thet will house another structure for growing more courgettes and squashes.

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I’ll be able to build it next week because I’ll get another delivery of the sticks!

All I need now is good growing weather.

MAKE, DO AND….BUILD

The saying ‘it’s not what you know but who you know’ is very true and I had it in mind when I went to our friend Paul and Anita’s house to organise the transport of long bean supports. He works with wood and has a huge supply of different kinds of wood, all shapes and sizes. They will be moving and he has to sort out his amazing amount of wood. The sticks were, I think, the first item to go.

I started with a number of fairly deep trenches, filling them with all possible vegetable peels, offcuts, anything that would normally go on the compost went into the trench.

It is amazing how much can one trench swallow! I’ve been filling my three trenches the whole winter and only now completed the first one.

 

I was very happy with the result and can’t wait to get growing.

The next job was to use the collapsed cold frames. They suffered quite a bit during the winter and the high winds were the last straw. But all was not lost. I managed to take them apart very carefully – I did put them together so I knew how they were constructed – and used the side panels to build a ‘raised bed’. well, not exactly but it a nice area for growing whatever crop that might need protection either by putting some fleece or a net over it.

That is the best part of allotmenting – you can make something out of almost nothing and nothing is wasted. An ideal situation for a hoarder like me.008

FINISHED!

Even though the date in the calendar shows 1st of December, the weather was very mild today. After a manic morning where I spent at least half an hour on the phone trying to sort out my Mum’s remote control for her TV ( success, she’ll receive a new one in the post after a few days) I went to the allotment.

I knew that I had only a small piece of the last plot to dig – the hardest bit though! This part of the plot wasn’t cultivated during this year, I just didn’t have enough strength or will to dig it over. This is the neglected plot I adopted in the spring. Most of it was very productive, I had a huge pumpkin, loads of courgettes and squashes and a few sacks of wonderful potatoes. This year I shall only cultivate one half, another lady will take the other half, that way we can both manage better.

The soil looks good, very crumbly (now, but when I started it was full of bindweed and couch grass roots!) I always hated rotavators and now I hate them even more, they help to chop the roots into small bits and the bits merrily grow on! Bah!!

My half will just have potatoes, there is a small area of raspberries and one line of climbing beans. I shall have just a single variety of beans in each line, that way it’ll be better organised.

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This afternoon was well spent, not only did I manage to finish the digging but I also cleared the polytunnel, ready for action next spring. The plastic on the tunnel is a bit tatty and I’ve decided to replace it with a net, thus creating another net tunnel. The plastic is rather discoloured, it is quite dark inside and I shall make a better use of a net tunnel. I prefer to grow outdoor tomatoes anyway. My veg has to be tough and survive!

RAIN

….and more rain!

I managed to get all my digging done, except one small piece of the latest plot – that was where I had my mound of branches and other things to burn. All that is gone, I was lucky and chose one dry evening….

The ashes are being dug in and the whole area will be given to potatoes next year with one bean trench, that is there and is filling up nicely with all the peelings etc from the kitchen. Only fruit and veg waste of course!