Peas, paraffin and planting

peas eaten by mice

What's left of the peas!

The pea attack culprits are definitely rodents!  No pigeon could possible get through our Fort Knox netting and we’ve lost about 60% of the 2nd lot of peas planted a fortnight ago.  They seem to take them when the sprouting pea is about an inch high and eat the pea seed from the bottom, discarding the rest.

So it was time to dig out the paraffin, give the replacement pea seeds a soak and get them in the ground.  This is meant to stop the mice (or bank voles possibly) eating the seeds, as they are not too partial to the taste of the paraffin.  I’ll let you know if it’s a success.  And if this doesn’t work, we’ll be back to growing them at home and transplanting.  So much for my labour and time saving plans!

Did I mention we had … RAIN?  Late in the afternoon of the Royal Wedding Day, the skies grew dark and we heard the rumble of thunder approaching.  Although heavy, it only lasted for an hour or so, but it clearly refreshed the allotment and we swear some of the plants had grown overnight!

Most of this weekend’s activity was given over to planting.  More beetroot and perpetual spinach were sown and the first wave of lettuce and brassicas are in the ground.

Back here at allotment central, more seeds were sown in modules and the tomato plants potted on.   The tomatoes  have now been promoted from the window ledges to the plant house.  With a frost expected this evening, we’ll have to remember to bed them down for the night.

Cosse Violette French Beans

Cosse Violette Purple French Beans

Having cleared the windows sills of the tomatoes, they are once again full up with plant pots!  This time it’s the Cosse Violette French beans which are being cosseted.

I’d never thought about growing French Beans until we had our allotment.  Even then, they were an impulse buy.  I was wandering round Lidl (great place to buy ground coffee for espresso!) and happened to spot them on a seed display.

The seeds were obviously not of British origin. The instructions on the packet clearly stated … not to be planted before May 10th!  Four years on  this still amuses us.  Is May 10th a significant day in the bean calendar?  What happens if we get a frost on May 11th?  Anything’s possible here in Chipping Norton.


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2 Responses to “Peas, paraffin and planting”

  1. Tickled Pink Says:

    Yes, we had some rain Friday night/Saturday morning and it’s surprising how much everything grew! Need some more now though.
    We’ve now got our second lot of peas in and bought some more lettuce seed to go in this week along with some more rocket and radish. We now have carrots, beetroot, peas, potatoes, broad beans, cabbage and horseradish with runner beans and tomatoes to come next time Dad visits.

  2. Joy McCarthy Says:

    The forecast says rain at the end of the week, but we’ve heard that before! Friday’s rain was the first since the end of February. We need a lot more.

    Sounds like you’ve been busy too. I’ve given up on rocket – it always bolts before we get anything off it. Doesn’t seem to matter how much I water it. Oh well … clearly I don’t have green fingers!

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