Much needed maintenance weekend

Allotment in need of maintenance

Allotment in need of maintenance

After 3 indolent weeks, we finally had a long-overdue day on our allotment.  We are not normally so neglectful, but family and other commitments have restricted our weekends, and pressure of work has kept us at our desks all week.

We have been up to harvest the last of the old season’s greens of course, and we were very much aware that some major maintenance was needed.  The most pressing job was strimming the paths, with the grass and weeds being close to 12” high.  However, David and his trusty strimmer soon put paid to that little problem!

I was in the planting and sowing department on Saturday.  With all the brassica plants sown in modules at home ready to go in the ground, I had my work cut out for me.  While everyone else in the allotment world seems to have their potatoes already in the ground, ours were still struggling to chit on the office window-ledge.  I’m no potato expert, but decided enough was enough and they could jolly well get themselves in the plot and do their stuff!

Once we’ve unloaded the car, our first mission is to take a leisurely walk round the beds.  It’s a good opportunity to see how it’s all doing, and check for any problems.  As a result, we know the peas are doing well, the onion sets are swelling, we have some very large tadpoles in the pond, and the broad beans, which had such an inglorious start, are covered in flowers.

The only minor disappointment are the Good Life carrots.  Despite being planted weeks ago now, there is still no sign of life.  But am I despondent?  Have I given up hope?  No!  You see, next to those chitted carrots suspended in goo, I also planted some the good old fashioned way too.  And guess what? There’s no sign of them either.  Being positive and from previous experience, I know carrots can take ages to get going.  But in my more negative moments, I am inclined to think the whole darn lot have had it!  So just in case, I took the precaution of sowing another clutch of seeds. I imagine all we can do now is wait and see what happens … so watch this space.

I had intended to take plenty of pictures at the allotment last weekend, but found to my dismay, my memory was full.  By next week, I’ll be sure to have cleared some space and snap away happily to populate the blog!

Meanwhile, back at the ranch we have had some serious germination problems, which I can only put down to the weather.  We’ve had some very cold nights and, despite being sheltered in the plant house, only a third of the sweetcorn seeds have survived and we have consistently lost about 50% of the peas and mange touts with each sowing.  There’s no doubt, however much fun this allotmenteering lark is, it’s fraught with hazards from start to finish!


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3 Responses to “Much needed maintenance weekend”

  1. allotment ali Says:

    my carrots (sown traditional not the good life way) are all starting to show signs of life very slowly though – it’s the weather. My broad beans are ok and noticed a few pea flowers today too. my jamaican friends at the site NEVER chit their potatoes and always get fantastic crops!!

  2. Joy McCarthy Says:

    That’s good to know Ali – I won’t abandon hope yet!

  3. Max Akroyd Says:

    I got my potatoes in bright and early to try and beat the blight later. I lost all 200 plants to a bizarre frost last week!

    Generally finding this a tough season so far. Much as I hate slugs and snails, I’m starting resent this cold, dry May.

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