Still Planting And A Walk Around My Allotment

I have usually planted most of my seedlings by now, but as this isn’t a normal year (due to the cold Spring we had), I still have some to plant.

This week I have been busy planting various things and I must say my allotment is getting pretty full.

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I started by planting some more cauliflowers.  As usual I prepared the ground by raking in some blood, fish and bone a couple of weeks ago and then just before I planted them I trod over the area and jumped and danced on it.  Brassica’s all need firm soil and you may remember that I also did this with my brussels a few weeks ago.  One of my readers (Paula) said I had invented the ‘Brussell Sprout Stomp’, which made me laugh.

One of the main reasons for cauliflowers ‘blowing’  (loose heads, where the curds don’t grow together) is the soil isn’t firm enough.  So I suppose you could now name the dance ‘ The Cauliflower Stomp’.

I covered my cauliflowers with environmesh:

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This week I planted my ‘outdoor’ cucumbers.  They are a variety called ‘Burpless Tasty Green’, which I have grown for a few years now with great success.  The skin is slightly prickly so I do peel them before eating.  They taste lovely, with no hint of bitterness, which some cucumbers have.

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I also planted some more spring onions, as we eat loads of these and I like to make sure we have some available for a long as possible over the summer…

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…and some beetroot and parsley:

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Finally, I planted some Nasturtiums next to my runner beans.  These are great companion plants as they attract blackfly.  The blackfly prefers the nasturtiums to the runner beans, so the nasturtiums act as sacrficial plants.

Nasturtiums next to my runner beans

Nasturtiums next to my runner beans

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The broad beans in my polytunnel are still producing some lovely pods for picking…

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…and I had a lovely surprise this week as I found my first two strawberries ready for picking.  I took them home and me and my daughters all savoured the lovely, juicy, sweet strawberries together.  There really isn’t anything that tastes as good as freshly picked strawberries.  If you have never eaten homegrown strawberries, you really do not know what you are missing as they taste nothing like supermarket strawberries, that are only bred for a long shelf-life.

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Now we have had some warm weather and some rain, things have begun to grow nicely.  I had a walk around my plot yesterday and I noticed a few things.  The dahlias that I grew from seed have begun to flower:

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The apples and plums are beginning to form nicely:

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My second early potatoes have begun to flower:

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My spring cabbages are finally ‘hearting up’:

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The first peas that I sowed this year are nearly ready:

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My polytunnel is growing well:

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And the lavender that edges both of my paths, is nearly in flower:

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The bees will love the lavender after my poached egg plants have stopped flowering.  When I stand amongst the poached egg plants there is still such a buzz of activity there:

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Finally I thought I would show you what I do with lettuces after I have picked them, if I don’t use them all at once.  After taking off the few leaves I need at the time, I pop the rest of the lettuce into an old pot full of water.  Just like flowers in a vase, the lettuce stays lovely and fresh for quite a few days.

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I hope you enjoyed reading my blog today.

  I will be back on Monday at approximately4pm.

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21 thoughts on “Still Planting And A Walk Around My Allotment

  1. Thank you so much for your comment about the brassicas. Almost all of our growing is in raised beds and I have prided myself on not walking on them and keeping the soil all moist and fluffy. Needless to say, my cabbages grow long, curly stalks and my cauliflowers are blowing for the second year running. At last I have an idea as to why. Thank you so much!

    • Hi Nicky. When I took on my first allotment, my dad warned me not to try and grow cauliflowers as he never had any success and neither did my grandad or great grandad etc….but this was like a red rag to a bull and I was even more determined to grow them lol. Eventually I twigged that they like firm soil and the cauliflower ‘stomp’ was born. I have also read that you have more success with F1 varieties too, but I’ve grown all sorts so i’m not sure how true this is.

  2. We do the same with our lettuce. Like you we grow Burpless Tasty Green but don’t peel them – I think the prickles must disappear after washing. This year we are also growing cucmber marketmore as it was a free packet of seed so we can compare.

    As for poached egg plants ours are now over and done with.

  3. Your plots look lovely, things are starting to take off now, i still have a few things to plant in our garden, putting the lettuce in water is a brilliant idea thank you ,i will be doing that as they dont last long otherwise.
    sue

  4. Your plot is so full & it must rate as one of the most busiest (especially the busy bees !)You must be always thinking forward to what needs to be started off next! I picked up some bargain seeds in Wilko ,radishes(white ones)year round lettuce,curly Kale & those romanesco green cauliflowers. All 4 packets cost me £1-45 !I’ve not had much good luck with cauliflowers before,I will have to learn the dance too for when I plant mine out ! I sat out in my garden & we watched the bees visiting my Philadelphus ,they were coming & going all afternoon. The scent was so strong ,it really hits you as you walk past !
    Regards, Carrie

    • Hi Carrie, yes I do have to think forward all the time, but I have a list that I have built up over the years that I refer to. I also love watching the bees. The philadelphus sounds lovely, how lovely having this scent everytime you walk past.

      That was a bargain at Wilko’s…I’ll nip in when I pass and see if they have any bargains at my local one, thanks for the tip.

  5. All the pictures look amazing! We have a sharp chill in the breeze today but the sun is out, and now I MUST go outside! You have inspired me 😀 😀

      • Iyiyiyi! Its not muggy here! Sharp is how I describe it. Fresh is another word I might use…my husband would use other descriptive words like bloody cold, damn breeze, and where the hell is my jumper, lol!
        I did go out and potter. Yesterday I mowed, and did not create too much slush, but Michael couldn’t get our poor old whipper snipper to go at all, so today I went around the edges and the far back area ( where the children play and the veggie garden) with the scissors, as the mower won’t fit :S Doesn’t look too bad…rather hacked…
        What do you guys use to keep the grass down?

      • At home we have a ‘battery’ lawn mower so we can use it at the allotment and we also use a ‘battery’ strimmer. We charge them both on the cheaper electricity when we first get up in the morning. The battery powered ones are not as good as the electric or petrol powered ones, but they do the job ok provided we don’t let the grass get too long

  6. Just picked Strawberries froze 3 quarts of them. Spinach we been eating fresh. That environmesh sound like the ticket. I don’t grow anything in cabbage family because of nasty bugs and worms that eats it all up.
    Your garden look nice…coffee is on

    • Hi Dora, homegrown strawberries taste so lovely don’t they. It’s hard work washing, hulling and freezing the strawberries, but we are so rewarded when we can get a taste of ‘summer’ in the depths of winter.

      By the way, love your blog.

  7. Hello Mrs Thrift! I’ve not been around for a while so it’s great to get back to your blog and see such a wonderful update! Great to know what you’ve been upto. Love the heart shaped strawberry and couldn’t agree more about the taste. Mine are still all green, can’t wait for them to turn!! Hope you’re well.

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