Sunday, 3 August 2014

Allotment Tales

Before going on holiday, I paid my usual visit to the allotment, to check on progress, in the knowledge that I wouldn't get back there for a couple of weeks.  I didn't actually need to water as the night before there'd been a deluge and the ground was nice and wet.

The cucumbers had settled in well,

as had the courgettes.

I was pleased that there wasn't any fruit from these plants anywhere near ready, so that hopefully, I wouldn't come back to huge marrows.

The beans were flowering well too,

and the strawberries were recovering well from been chopped right back.

When I came back, it was a couple of days before I could physically get to the allotment, what with washing, unpacking, food shopping and 18th birthday gift shopping for my neice that was urgent and couldn't be put off.  When I did return to the allotment there was quite a bit of work to do as there were quite a lot of weeds and some parts had got a bit unruly. 

I was pleased to see that a couple of cucumbers were ready for harvesting.  These were a short variety about the size of a half cucumber.  Hopefully the plants should produce many more during the remainder of the summer.

Sadly, the same couldn't be said of the courgettes.  I think 3 out of the 4 plants I put in are male and won't produce fruit.  One plant does have some small courgettes on it.

At least there were no marrows, as I never know what to do with them.

There were a few spring onions to harvest and I found a couple of carrots from ages ago, which I harvested.  The only other thing to harvest was some rhubarb, which was now doing very nicely indeed.  More crumbles coming up I think.

Sadly, the remaining few lettuces had bolted in the heat.

There is now just one left still growing, so I need to sow some more as soon as I can.

There was good news on the pepper front as the half dead plants (attacked by snails in the garden) I put in a few weeks ago were looking a whole lot better and even had some flowers on them.  I may get some peppers yet if the season is long enough.  The sweetcorn plants were also looking a bit healthier, although not as robust as they would had I planted them a lot earlier and they even had some cobs forming.

There were a few tiny beans on the bean plants too and lots of flowers, so hopefully I should get a good harvest later in the season.  Half the potatoes still need digging up, but as I've still got lots at home that I dug up a month ago, I didn't dig them up on this visit and concerned myself with weeding, hoeing, cutting back and watering, to get the plot back into better shape.  I managed to make quite good progress in the couple of hours I spent there and left with it looking tidier than it has done for a while, although there is still quite a bit of work to do.

All in all things were coming along quite nicely.  I think that going away at the start of the summer holidays was definitely better than later, when there is more harvesting to be done.  My friend's husband doesn't like to go away at all during the summer months on account of his allotment.  I can definitely understand why.

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