Second week of the easter holidays for us. I had such high hopes about how much work I was going to do on the plot over the holidays but the weather has really been against me – raining for most of last week and far too wet and muddy for most of this week to be able to do much. It started to dry out towards the end of this week so I did manage a few visits.
I’ve joined Instagram (username Nici347 if you’d like to have a look) and I’ve become rather obsessed (I’m hashtagging all over the place!) I’m following loads of other allotment holders so I get to look at loads of great photos of seedlings (turns out some of my favourite images are rows of newly planted seedlings – I think it’s the optimist in me!) beautifully tended plots and lovely looking fruits and vegetables. All very inspiring and it’s definitely given me hope that, one day my plot could look as good and be as productive as some of the ones I’m looking at.
On Wednesday, we visited our local garden centre as I wanted to buy some more slug repellant to try and keep the little blighters away from my rhubarb. While we were there Louis, my son picked up some sweet pepper seeds. I really want to encourage him to take an interest in and enjoy the allotment so we bought a propogator for them. I also picked up a sweet potato plant – we love sweet potatoes so I’m looking forward to discovering if we are able to grow them on the plot (I’m told they can be quite difficult)
I have, either an apple or a pear tree on the plot. It appears to have survived my rather vigorous ‘pruning’ (I think I may have described it as ‘hacking’ at the time!) and looks like it will blossom any time soon. This is very exciting! I am a keen crumble maker so the prospect of making pear or apple crumble with fruit from my own tree fills me with joy!
The large black pot had no puddles of water in the bottom of it so, it looks like the drainage holes I drilled in it last Sunday have done the job. Time to plant the potatoes. I had 6 Albert Bartlett potatoes chitting and they have now been planted in the pot in a circle with the sweet potato plant in the middle. I have absolutely no idea if this is going to work but, while I’m learning, everything is an experiment and we can only wait and see what happens. AA has advised me to cover them with clear plastic to keep them warm but let light in. I’m thinking bubble wrap (at least then if I get bored while I’m down there I’ll have something to do!) but I keep forgetting to take some down with me. Hopefully I’ll remember this week.
After checking the rhubarb I realised the original pot I’d bought to force it was woefully inadequate, as the leaves were starting to shoot through the hole in the top. I looked online for rhubarb forcers and found they ranged from really quite expensive to ludicrously expensive so, off we popped to Wilkinson (surely the new Woolies?) and found a really tall planter for a mere £7 which is plenty tall enough for the rhubarb to continue growing unencumbered (I know this will please certain readers who showed real concern over last week’s disaster!)
A few people advised me the pepper seeds probably need to be somewhere warmer than the allotment shed (one brutally honest person simply told me I was far too late planting them and I may as well give up now. I am no longer taking any notice of that person! Haha!) So, taking this advice on board, and wanting Louis to be able to watch the seeds germinate and grow, we brought them home and they are now on top of the tumble drier, no doubt feeling much warmer.
Friday was a ‘happy post day’. I’d ordered a garden planner and an organic journal in the Paperchase sale and a foam garden kneeler from Amazon and they all arrived, along with a packet of wild flower seeds I’d forgetten I’d ordered! (old age? menopause? delay in delivery? all 3?)
On Saturday we woke to glorious sunshine – at last! I popped to the allotment in the morning to enjoy the Spring sunshine and get some work done. Michelle, the lady on the plot behind mine was there doing some weeding. I was there for over an hour but I spent about half of that time chatting to Michelle. So, not much got done but I definitely enjoyed the weather.
Today Louis, my son decided he would join me (he sat in the shed on his ipad the whole time we were there but at least he was out in the fresh air and not stuck indoors) While he was working hard Minecrafting I worked hard weeding for a couple of hours. I’m slowly working my way along the first area I covered. The weed repressant fabric has been down on this part of the plot for over 2 months and it’s starting to do its job. The weeds aren’t actually dead but they were certainly easier to pull up. I worked hard but only cleared a small area – this is going to take flippin ages!
This is what it looked like when I started…and this is 2 hours later
There seemed to be a lot of worms (due to all the rain we’ve had recently?) and, as I dug I was reminded of a joke I heard as a kid. (my friend, Betty likes a joke and has just come out of hospital, so this one’s for you x)
What’s worse than finding a worm in your apple?
Finding half a worm in your apple.
Oh dear. Poor worms. If it’s not the robins, it’s me!