Monday, April 23, 2012


Back from hols

And the weather was horrible for tourism but quite good for the lottie. After a week of steady rain, the veg has come on no end, especially the spuds, and unfortunately the weeds - the dreaded bindweed is already poking it head through everywhere. It got a good hoeing!
Yesterday between two showers (spent cowering in the shed), I managed to sow more peas, filling in the existing rows so they will be very full (sowed Alderman and Early Onward). I also put in the first in a series of runner bean sowings: some A4A saved seed from Goodlife and some Enorma that I had bought. It is chilly here but night temperatures are very mild, around 9 deg, so I think they will be fine by the time the germinate. I also sowed some swiss chard for autumn, and I planted out a row of All Year Round caulis (and netted them) and some more Little Gem and oakleaf lettuces. It will be nice to be eating our own lettuce soon.
The rocket seedlings are up and I sowed Mizuna, so soon we will have those salad greens too. I have not tried that before but I find it tasty.
I picked some beaut rhubarb, the younger plant is coming on so well, I did have to take off some flowers though, and soon I will be able to pick from the older plant as well. I made apple and rhubarb crumble for Sunday lunch. The second bout of radishes were ready and they were tasty after a wet week. First time I have succeeded so well! (Spring sowing, under fleece - must remember that!). There will be enough for a last picking next weekend. The turnips next to them are growing well, not yet big enough but the roots are starting to develop.
The very wet ground is excellent for weeding, I pulled up loads of dandelion and groundsel, chickweed and bindweed, hoeing everywhere.
The White sprouting broccoli was removed - I felt sad to see it go! The plants were massive, one was at least as thick as my arm and I had trouble getting it out and onto the wheelbarrow. I have gotten my seeds to sow the new batch, next weekend. Funny to think that they have a cycle of almost exactly a year. There is still plenty of broccoli in the freezer though.
The leeks also came out, as on neighbouring plots they were starting to flower. I have a big bunch of about 10 leeks to be cut and washed and frozen (and maybe a ham and leek quiche in there somewhere!). The rhubarb red chard is going to flower soon, but no matter, you can still pick it. I got quite a good bunch yesterday, not sure how to cook it now, sweated with soy sauce? or in a cream sauce?
 Soon there will be some public holidays coming up, and it will be time to do the following jobs:
- Dig over the former compost pile, remove a bit for the new plantations, and cover that area with thick paper and black plastic, ready for sowing the courgettes and cucumbers.
- Dig over the tomato/pepper bed and plant those out in about 10 days time.
- Go fetch some horse stable waste for mulching the new plantations.
- Get up some stakes and sow the cucumbers and the Fat Baby Acocha under cloches.
- Finish digging over the bean bed and make the first French bean sowings.

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