Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Catch Up

Apologies for not posting anything lately, it’s been quite hectic and I’ve not managed to find the time to post a blog, but anyway here we are and here is what’s been happening. Plenty of weeding done but this has come to a halt as the weather is awful, downpours of heavy rain for the past four days so it’s very wet, but it saves watering those potatoes!

So all the potatoes are now in the ground, I even managed to get the ‘sample’ spuds in eventually, hopefully they will all grow to produce some lovely tasty potatoes. I’m wondering whether to empty out one of the containers growing the 1st earlies Rocket, still no flowers and still nothing to find whilst rummaging. I think I may have to bite the bullet and empty one to see what is going on if anything. The seaweed/comfrey trials have started; one row of Rudolph was planted on a bed of seaweed and rotted manure, earthed up and watered in with a seaweed drink. I then planted another row of Rudolph on a bed of comfrey leaves and rotted manure and this was watered in with a comfrey drink. Each row had the same amount of potatoes planted and each potato was roughly the same size. To date the seaweed potatoes are the first to start making an appearance, a couple of leaves are beginning to poke through the soil. You can see in the picture below, my 2nd earlies are coming along nicely, the bed in the background is where the early maincrop are planted, the row at the left of the picture is the seaweed potatoes and the row next to that on its right are the comfrey potatoes. There is a row of Blue Danube to the far right and also a mixed row of Blue Danube and Rudolph. I’ve planted up the late maincrop Golden wonder in the area where the wildlife patch will go, things were just getting too tight to have the final bed weeded for them and I’d dug the wildlife area over last summer so all I had to do was pull out the fresh weeds and plant the potatoes, and I thought that the manure would enrich the soil ready for when the flowers/pond can go in when they are pulled up in the autumn. I’ll not get round to planting out the wildlife flowers this year, well possibly in the autumn I can put in the pond and a few plants but I think the majority of the plants will be put in next spring.

The tomatoes are coming along nicely, quite a few are now potted up in 5 litre tubs, these will have one final move to 9 litre tubs when they are ready, I might plant some in the ground at the allotment, if the bottle house isn’t completed in time, if it is, I’ll put some in grow bags or a ring culture in there. My aubergine plant got scorched and wilted beyond recovery one very hot afternoon, so I’ve had to resort to buying a plant from the garden centre. The cucumber plants didn’t germinate so I’ve planted a couple more; these are just starting to peek through the compost. Chilli Peppers and Sweet Peppers are looking good also.

My two over-wintering cauliflowers have produced nice little curds, I’m waiting anxiously until I can pick these, there is a nice cauli and potato recipe in one of my magazines which I’m wanting to use them on along with some of my 1st earlies. Plenty of cabbages, broccoli (green and purple), cauli and sprouts ready to plant out, which I’ll do once this blasted, rain stops.

I’ve made some bean frames (see below) ready to have the Runner and French beans planted against, these are in the process of hardening off at the moment. I’m going to make a wigwam of canes for the Borlotti and Flangelot beans to climb. The Squash, Pumpkin and Courgette plants are putting on growth, these will need planting out shortly, and I’m going to plant some with the beans, some with the Sweetcorn and hopefully some on their own, the Sweetcorn is also hardening off ready to be planted out hopefully over the weekend, when the weather is forecasted to warm/dry up.
Caleb and I went on a course this weekend just gone - Beginners Guide to Chicken Keeping. It was really good; we got to learn about their habits, food, shelter etc. and we even went into a large coop/run and handled them. Caleb though they were brilliant, so now he can’t wait for the chickens to arrive, I’ll have to hurry up and get their coop and run built, job number 624, lol.

Rounding off with a picture for you, have you seen the size of the root on this thistle which I dug out the other day!

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