Wednesday, June 20, 2012


Rainy June

The allotment is full of lush growth with all the rain we have been having, but it doesn't suit all the plants!
The purple Vitelotte potatoes don't seem to mind it! They are in flower, but are supposed to be maincrops so I don't expect them to be ready yet. They were planted after the others, on March 26, so they currently have 87 days in the ground to their credit. I am guessing for an August harvest.
We are already eating the earlies, but the maincrops are the tallest I have ever seen! There are Claustar variety and a few Pink Fir Apples.
I picked these earlies, these ware from about 3 or 4 plants (Belle de Fontenay):

Behind them you can see the raspberries - next year they really need to be drastically thinned as they are complete thugs.
The runner beans are doing very well, and you can see the peas behind them here. Last night I teased some out of the peas, they were getting too friendly! And wound them up their own willow teepees.
There aren't tons of them but I think they will give us plenty of beans.
The AllYear Round caulis seem happy. It's the first time I have succeeded in getting caulis this far....
Near them is the seedbed: it contains the winter cabbages, PSB, brussel sprouts and swiss chard that will be planted in the potato bed over the next couple of weeks. (oops don't know why it is rotated - can't get it right!)
The tomatoes suprisingly like this weather but let's hope there is no blight later on - some are already flowering well. I planted around them a few French marigolds (tagetes) that had self seeded in the onion bed. I couldn't get any to grow from seed myself of course!!:
 The squash is slow but hanging on. They were planted in the old compost bin, so they should have the richest possible position! There are a pattypan squash, 2 butternuts and 2 other courgettes. You can see at the front a strange yellow plant. I am told this is one of my Soleil yellow courgettes! Drat the picture is once again not rotated properly!
The first artichokes: ready soon:
This is the state of play in June 2012. Now send some sun please!

Thursday, June 14, 2012



A word to describe the sunshaine and the postings in this blog!
After days and days of rain, finally a little warmth and sun. Hopefully the plants are soaking it up, like we humans are.
It's a mixed bag on the plot. We ate salad till it's coming out of our ears but some is bolting now. Luckily there are more baby plants to put out and the mizuna and rocket is ready to eat too.
Peas are incredibly prolific, they are ripening at various times but we are regularly eating little amounts of fresh peas for dinner.
The runner beans are doing very well, running up their willow poles. There are a couple of gaps that need filling, a job for the weekend. The french beans are sulking, I need to sow somw more, and also get the Cobras in and the Borlotti beans.
The baby cabbages and sprouts are now ready to plant out, when the garlic comes out this weekend, they will go in there, topped up by some fresh compost and a few pellets.
We are eating new spuds, they are delicious.

On the downside, the strawberries need sun, and the gooseberries have been stripped of their leaves by caterpillars :-(  Raspberries are just appearing now, if there is sun, the crop will be overwhelming.  But next year I need to be ruthless with them, they are just too big.

Squash - one cucumber plant has survived, I will try sowing more but it's getting late. Butternuts have come up, and 3 courgettes, I also found a mystery squash plant in with the beetroot, must have come from a seed or a rotted fruit, dunno what it is. I shifted it to a more convenient location, so we will soon see.
Only 3 pumpkin plants have come up from all the seeds sown, so I will sow another 2 or 3 I think, indoors to get them off to a start. Obviously something has eaten the seeds or in all this rain they have rotted.

The Fat Baby acchoca has sprung up, at least one of the plants, so let's see how that gets on, I will stake it this weekend. We will soon be eating our first artichokes, a little later than usual.
Weeds are everywhere but some hoeing this week has fought back a little. The tomatoes are getting so big, some have flowers and even baby fruit. But they need sun. as do the peppers and aubergines which are most unhappy.
More pics soon...

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