Sunday, 26 February 2012

Compost Bins In Place ,Saturday 25th February 2012

Another busy couple of hours . It seems that not all the potatoes I'd planted the other day were deep enough and as this was my first year on this plot I'd missed the manure delivery last autumn and had no compost to fall back on . So using the pallets I brought the other day I constructed the compost bins and promptly painted them green using up an old tin of woodstain from the garden at home.
 I then turned my attention to the apple tree and using an old saw removed the thick branches that were below my head height as I prefer to keep my eyes! After that I planted blackcurrant cuttings taking the total now up to 74 planted - time will tell if they all grow. The netting that I had used as fencing between my plot and plot45 was neatened  up using plant ties so that it was no longer sagging during the wide expanses. I planted two more comfrey roots behind the gate and two spinach plants I had growing over winter in the greenhouse at home I planted up in the asparagus bed.  
Just before I went home I had 4m of plastic border edging spare at home so I used that next to one of the beds - not exactly a straight effort so I don't think I will be repeating it.
Thanks for visiting / reading today , Paul .

Compost heap with the apple tree prunings next to the fence.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Potatoes And Paint

 Today was a very bizarre February day as temperatures reached 19 degrees Celsius in some parts of the U.K. . I took the opportunity late in the afternoon to pay a visit to the allotment . I loaded up the car with the last two pallets I had from just before Christmas , hammer and netting hooks along with the netting rolls I had bought yesterday , fence paint and an old paintbrush and finally a spade and the 16 Vales Emerald potatoes I had had chitting from 3rd January .
 Since early January I have been chitting potatoes in our dining room at home and hopefully today I shall be able to plant some up at the allotment. Overall I have the following collection :
16 Vales Emerald (began chitting 3rd January 2012)
12 Cultra (began chitting 12th January 2012)
25 Maris Peer (began chitting 12th January 2012)
5 Saxon (9th February 2012)
10 Desiree (16th February 2012)
Daylight had gone before I finished planting the Vales Emerald
Total spent so far = just 50p.
The fence once painted.

 I arrived at the allotment around 4p.m. and promptly began painting the fence . Once I had completed the painting I quickly began to hammer the rolls of netting to the posts between my plot and plot 45 - sadly I didn't have enough netting to complete the job and ideally I could do with quite a few cable ties to neaten and strengthen the netting so that it can act as a form of fencing. 
 That was all done and the time was now 5.45p.m. and daylight was fading very quickly now. I returned to the car to get the 2 pallets, potatoes and spade .It's amazing how much longer the walk from the main gates to plot 44 is once your arms are full. Anyway I put the pallets on the plot where I want the compost heap to be and quickly set about planting the potatoes in two ridges hastily dug in the bed that contains the apple tree.
 All done & dusted and back in the car driving home at 6p.m. 
Thanks for reading, Paul.

Wednesday 22nd February 2012

 Well today I had planned to plant some rhubarb root I had collected over the weekend and had stuck in my car boot as well as plant some comfrey roots I had collected. It was early just before 9a.m. ,with just a touch of fine rain, so I thought I would be done and dusted quite quickly but then I ran in to Billy who showed me the positive effects of raking over the beds now the frost had been . It was quite vigorous work and since I had had no breakfast or anything I had to quit with just over half the plot raked and I was back home before 9.30 a.m. . I had to admit it did make the beds look much neater as hopefully you can see in the two photographs below.
What the plot looked like first thing.

Most of the beds at the back have been raked.
 In the afternoon I bought two 5m x 90cm rolls of netting to act as a fence between my plot and plot 45 with the intention of fastening that to the posts on Thursday.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Up To Week Ending 19th February 2012

Asparagus roots before planting.

View of plot 44 from outside

View of Plot 44 from the gate.

The mini rose bushes.
I didn't have any free time this week due to redecorating my son's bedroom at home so it was sunday 19th February before I got to visit and then it was only for a hour . I had gone along with a dozen blackcurrant cuttings, 3 asparagus roots and 12 mini rose bushes .
 When I arrived I noticed a dozen strawberry plants that had been left behind the gate of my plot by the holders of plot43 so I wasted no time in planting those along with the dozen blackcurrant cuttings in the bed next to the chain link fence.
The blackcurrant cuttings

 I then planted the 3 asparagus roots in the bed on the left in front of the fruit bed and check on the rhubarb I planted the other week . The rhubarb was just beginning to show through the surface of the soil so I replaced the cover on them .
Rhubarb shoots appearing.

 Although I had intended to only grow vegetables on the plot I had spotted a dozen mini rose bushes reduced down in price to 75p for the lot as they were remnants from Valentines so I purchased them and planted them in front of the raised yellow bed .
With the ground being softer this week I was able to back fill the post holes today in the fence to complete that job .
 So all in all it was a productive hour well spent.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Friday 10th February 2012

I had bought a lock to put on the gate whilst out yesterday so I popped up today with the sole intention of paying just a brief visit and paying my first annual membership to the allotment society . As I arrived I met Billy and gave him the envelope containing my details and fees for my membership . I then walked up to my plot and checked on the rhubarb that had been planted last week .
 Whilst attaching the gate lock I finally got to meet Ken . An old guy with an obsession with growing large onions and possibly an over active imagination as to what he is actually producing in summer. Certainly a lot of work has gone in to his plot - possibly too much but it keeps him active and happy. He advised me not to submit plans for a shed and told me I wouldn't be allowed a shed at the front . The conversation went from manure to digging drains , growing cane fruit , mulching and security. Regardless to what he said I was still submitting plans for the shed if only to save heartache later on.
It requires painting a.s.a.p. to tidy it up.
 So my five minute visit ended up a hour and then I had to return within the hour as I'd uncovered a wheelbarrow and promptly took it to the plot.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012


I only popped to the allotment to take a photograph of the plot covered in frost . Little did I know that a chance meeting with Billy again would lead to the construction of the boundary fence all in just 3 hours.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

The Week Ending the 5th February 2012

The weather changed a lot this week with severe frost , hailstones and plenty of ice . Before the weather turned too much below freezing ,on Thursday 2nd February ,I was able to plant some rhubarb root (that I had found) in the bed I had dug on the 26th January . I covered this with some blue plastic bag that had once littered the plot. I noticed that in my absence Billy had dropped of 3 fence posts that he had shown me the other week. On my exit from the allotment site I met a guy who offered to get me a key cut for the pedestrian gate so I gave him £2 and said I would pick the key up from the keycutters the following afternoon totally unaware that the key cutter was on holiday this week so chances are that I might not see any return for that £2.
 On Friday 3rd February the big freeze was on so I only made a brief visit to the plot just to show my wife what progress had taken place since the last time she saw the place last . Thankfully she was impressed.
The glass pixie's work

I can't wait to erect the fence posts.

It's getting there , all I need is a fence,gate ,shed and some plants.
 Sunday 5th February and as the ice began to melt in the afternoon I took the opportunity to drop off several wooden pallets that I had had stored in my back garden since just before Christmas. I noticed the glass pixies had been busy with 2 broken bottles appearing on the plot , one being down a fence post. The post holes were full of water but I took the opportunity to dig them a touch deeper.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Digging the last beds 26th January 2012

Well this week had been very busy so no time to actually visit the allotment except on thursday and so I made the most of my time there by digging the last of the beds out and extending others. I also began digging holes for the fence posts . So below are the photos of progress.
View before digging from the right.

View before digging from the left.

After digging the beds at the top I turned my attention to the front and a future fence.

Digging the holes ready for the fence posts.

View from the front left corner before I left.

View from the centre of the front.
View from the front right corner.

At home I sowed several lots of seeds on the windowsill with the hope of planting them out when they germinate.

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