Sunday, April 29, 2007

Perfect rows of onions on our anniversary!!!!

After weeks of anxious waiting the Jerusalem artichokes finally arrived, and 7am yesterday morning we headed off to the allotment, cleared the designated area, and put them in 18 inches apart and 5 inches deep. Like many people we had never seen a Jerusalem artichoke before they arrived, but rather than taking a photograph and using this as an opportunity to educate the public...we just planted them and took a picture of the newly watered patch:

Other parts of the allotment continue to flourish, with this week's highlight being the perfect rows of onions:

Today also marks the one year anniversary of us having an allotment! Whilst it was a big job at the start, and there have been depressing moments, overall its definitely been a pleasure.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Lots of life on a packed allotment!

It's always exciting when there is lots of life above ground rather than just taking photographs of rectangles of earth with bits of string stretched out over the top. The broad beans are looking extremely healthy:

And the mini-apple-tree is already sprouting leaves:

As well as getting to enjoy the signs of life, we have also been continuing to plant more things. Today saw the addition of two sorts of lettuce and some cabbages. We are running out of room on the brassica section of the allotment, and may have to plant our courgettes amongst the legumes...although how the beans will react is anybody's guess.

Between stretching her toes and demanding I put more effort into the digging Emma has drawn up a plan of the allotment that shows how much we have planted so far(click on the picture to enlarge).

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Yet more beans and berries!

We have just spent an extremely productive morning at the allotment planting some berry bushes that arrived in the post yesterday, and some dwarf beans that Emma bought during the week. We would have planted some lettuces, but Emma 'forgot' to buy those...which is quite surprising as we had a big conversation about them last week...namely how I wanted lettuces and she didn't!

These berry bushes seem to have a bit more life in them, than the blueberry bush which seems to be playing hard to get, and the olive tree which seems to be wilting in the hot British weather.

We have tried a new design with our canes for the dwarf beans this year:

Which turned out to be an extremely user-friendly way of doing it, and we will probably do the same thing for any future beans (unless they have fallen over by next week).

Monday, April 09, 2007

Pea shoots and tuberons!

The first signs of life are now appearing on the allotment from the seeds we planted a couple of weeks ago, most noticeably with the peas:

With such encouragement we soon got down to sowing the parsnips, carrots and beetroot.

nb. Whilst the term 'tuberons' should be used to refer to the tuberosus family of root vegetables (e.g., potatoes and the missing Jerusalem artichoke) I have used it here in the incorrect sense to bolster its self-image on Google...ONLY 199 hits!!!!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Chitting and lots of brassicas

Whilst the whereabouts of the missing Jerusalem artichokes is still a mystery the morning was started by a delivery of potatoes of the melody variety. These are now chitting away in an old egg box:

According to the instructional leaflet they need to be left for about six weeks before they can be planted!

We did however spend a produtive morning planting some other delights, most noticeably the brassicas: broccoli, calabrese, Brussels sprouts[1], and spinich:

As well as another half row of peas.

[1]Whilst the Wikipedia recognises the common usage of 'Brussel sprouts' the Oxford English Dictionary will brook no such behaviour...unfortunately 'Brussels sprouts' doesn't flow so easily, so I shall now live in fear of their regular appearance in conversations!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Apples and Sunflowers

Unfortunately as the nice weather approaches there is hardly time to make a blog entry between trips to the allotment as we seem to be there so regularly!

Just yesterday we were planting a mini apple tree:

This is one of those occasions that you curse the demise of the hyphen. Will it be mini-apples or regular sized apples on a mini apple-tree? Time will probably just tell that our apple tree doesn't like to produce apples of any description!

We also planted some sunflowers next to the shed:

You can't help but feel positive about sunflowers...thanks to the encouragement of Blue Peter everyone has managed to grow at least one sunflower!

First thing tomorrow morning we plan to be there once again, planting some healthy greens and another half row of peas. Although the big question still remains:
"Where are our Jerusalem artichokes???"

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Onions, garlic, and some flowers

There are a million and one things to do on the allotment at the moment, but somehow it always takes longer than we expect. Nonetheless we managed to plant our onions and the garlic...even though Mr Fothergill's garlic was decidedly dodgey...we may be looking elsewhere for our seeds next year!

And most importantly...from Emma's point of view anyway...she sowed some pretty little flowers....oooh!

(Nb. all exciting things are happening underground at the moment so it's a fairly generic photo).