Thursday, July 23, 2009


Summer 09 more pics

Just a quick pictorial update on the allotment.
Unfortunately these pics were takien before my work session, in which I got down and ripped out large quantities of this bloody grass that is growing everywhere. I will have to take some "After" pics to show that I did do some weeding!
The 3 sisters lot is working strangely this year. Not all the sweetcorn grew properly and the pumpkin is slow, despite the patch being well manured. But the beans are quite something! They are "Coco de Paimpol" shelly beans. This year they have grown terrifically well and I hope to be able to pick them at the half-dry stage, last year I was too late and they dried on the plants.
In this pic you can see the rampant raspberries in the background. And my neighbour's lovely dahlias!

There is also something very satisfying about growing pumpkins, it must be the lushness of the plant. Mine are growing all round the compost bin, it's obviously feeding them through the ground. I am not sure of the variety as I sowed several sorts, they are either butternuts, or Queensland Blues, although my friend gave me a Uchiki Kuri Hokkaido squash but I don't know yet if it has worked. I will have to wait for the fruit to be identifiable!!

Lots of people claim to have trouble with parsnips but mine always work very well, touch wood. These are White Gem variety, from the UK.
Here you can see them, side by side with some beetroot, and a few carrots, this year's big failure.
I have since attacked the grass there and it is looking much tidier. Behind there you can see a few young lettuces and the potato patch which I basically leave to its own devices once the foliage has grown. It is now starting to die back.

Monday, July 20, 2009


Beans again!

Wow, the beans are giving so well! I picked another pound yesterday and they are so delicious! I cooked them up and we had bean salad with tomato and some red onion. yum yum.
I took some pics down the lottie yesterday! And I did some hard work: I dug over the old pea/broad bean patch, planted some new French beans and a last ditch effort at carrots. Yes yes I know what I said but in that area, the soil is especially sandy and light and I am thinking, "maybe, just maybe". sigh well just hoping for the best. I left a bit of room for some more beetroot too, as I do love it and it grows well into the autumn. But yesterday I forgot the seeds :-S oops
Before digging over:

After digging over:

OK this is not a great shot but I wanted to show you Raymond (neighbour's) beautiful blue hydrangeas, hee hee:

Squash, courgettes and pumpkins are doing very well, lots of little fruit all over the place. We are eating a yellow courgette about every second day. And I have pictorial proof that my little eggplant and chillis are growing and fruiting. They are cute, I am hooked. They will be a permanent fixture in the summer garden I would say.

The tomatoes have a lot of fruit but it's green for now. Hurry up and ripen! I can hardly wait to eat the little blighters!
There is still a lot to do... Some more rainbow chard to transplant, winter lettuce to sow, weeds to massacre. Bloody bramble is back among the lemon balm. Bastard. I will have to get out the welding gloves and rip it all out again. Getting ripped topieces in the process, no doubt.
Here's a little pic of the whole lot: I have attacked the weeds a bit since then (bloody grass! drives me mad!). Still it looks lush and summery:

It's all in a day's work for the valiant allotmenteer though ;-)
Back with more pics soon.

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Friday, July 10, 2009


beans beans are good for your heart...

Just as well because they are starting to pop up! We ate our first serving of home grown beans yesterday, a mix of yellow Kingswax and green Cobra climbers - beautiful. On the weekend I will immediately dig up the old broad bean patch, fill it with manure and sow some more beans for later in the summer.
I filled 3 boxes with our onions/echalotes/red onions, it's been a great harvest. Now I need to dig over and weed that patch and mulch it with straw and manure, so it doesn't become a jungle.
The courgettes are forming well, not quite big enough to pick, but nearly. The aubergines have come out in beautiful purple flowers, so hopefuly fruit will follow soon. and before the holidays preferably! There are some green tomatoes on the vine, just waiting to soak up some sun. The pumpkins are wnding their way around the compost box (I had better pinch them out soon) and the sweetcorn is about 80cm high. Tassles are just starting to form so I had better shake them everytime I go down there!!
This period is pretty frustrating - everything is almost ready to pick but not quite!

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Monday, July 06, 2009


Got my key again

I had lost my key to my allotment! So luckily this weekend I was able to make a copy and get back to the garden! It was time to dig up the onions, which are now spread on the ground to mature. They are great, there are a few real whoppers and some nice echalotes and even the red onions made a good showing for once.
The aubergines have flowers so hopefully fruit soon, same with the peppers and the tomatoes. We ate our first yellow Parador courgettes, they were delicious. The beans also have flowers starting, so our first beans will be ready anon.
I will try and take some new pics this week as everything is flourishing (unfortunately the weeds too, but I will try and overcome that with some strategic hoeing!).

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