Saturday, 4 October 2008

It's a windy day!

Firstly a bit of sad allotment news! My one and only surviving Jeruselem Artichoke has been snapped in two :o(. I don't know if it was the wind, over zealous clearance of the community plot next door or on purpose (doubtful!). I've put the branches over the top of the JA as a mulch which my magazine told me to do and hopefully it will survive to be eaten (or is big enough, we never had any flowers :o( ).

Below is another pic of my beans drying. I don't know why, but I really like them - all shrivelled! We shelled these ones last night - they're called Mr Fearn's Purple Podded and have black beans in them. We also shelled Corona D'ora which have white beans in and some Borlotti (Heirloom) and True Red Cranberry for eating undried.

Left - Corona D'ora; Right- Mr Fearn's; Front - immature True Red Cranberry; Back - Borlotti.

Two of the sunflower heads got the chop today. One is going to be used to collect the seeds for saving and using next year and for eating, and one was put upside-down on the shed roof for the birdies (who are already starting to feast on the ones in the ground, what a mess of seed cases!).

We had a brilliant tidy up of the fruit beds. We've still the starwberry beds to do, but the four we've done already look SOOO much better. The fruit must be breathing a sigh of relief too!

When we cleared the currant bed I'd also chucked some Little White Rabbit/White Currant Tomato plants in. These produced loads of tiny toms but did not ripen. I've saved some seeds of the few ripened ones and will sow them next year (very, very sweet!) but grow them in the green house.

With the mass of green toms on the bushes though I made Spicy Green Tomato Chutney.

And lastly, my little brother came to visit us and the plot while on his jollies from the States. He made all the right sort of appreciative noises - even though I suspect he doesn't rreally get the whole grow your own scene ;oD!

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Autumn on the Plot

Two piccies of my plot as of Sunday. One from the usual view and one from the other looking from the far side of my neighbours plot. Comparing the top pic to the banner at the top of my blog you can see how it has really come on!

A quick catch-up:-

We've now transplanted 4 rows of junior leeks of various size and thicknesses, and some in cells - some bare rooted. I've no idea what type they are!!!

We've sown one net bag of Shensu (?) Japanese Onions which totalled 84 and the bag wasn't even quite empty! I've another bag to go (underestimated the quantity in a bag! :o) ) so am thinking I might put them in too, but closer together and eat them as babies. THIS year I've sown them properly so that they are only half buried. I can only think that I read the instructions wrong last year (too deep!).

Another plot-shot. You can see my pumpkins and sweetcorn in the same bed and nearest to us is the parsnip bead. Fantastic so far - huge and looked amazing until I did a spectacular 'Mrs Doyle' fall into the bed!! Glad no-one was watching! The Kale at the bottom of the pic is my neighbour's.

Next are close-ups of my beans. The first is the fantastic borlotti beans that I got from America under the name of 'True Red Cranberry'. The bonus is that they are a climbing variety rather than my poor slug nibbled dwarf variety! The second pic is of my rather smashing Cosse Violette drying ready to be harvested.

My butternuts are doing well. I tried growing them up over an arch but it resisted rather. So eventually I had to tie it up to the chiken wire left over from the peas too. It is VERY happy.

The poppies on the plot were fantastic! Huge and lilac. I had spent a good few hours pulling a load out thinking they were weeds (I know that technically they are!) before I realised what they were. I've liberally sprinkled the seeds around but also thought the seed heads were interesting!

An arty shot of a dewy spider's web on the courgette leaves. Ahhhh!

And finally my new friend!! Found peering in at me in the greenhouse - longingly I think! :0)


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