Sunday, 27 April 2008

Making the most of todays' SUNSHINE

I left for the lotty on the sunny day of Saturday 26th April at around 10am, thinking I would only be there for about 2 hours. 4 hours later and I was still finding things to do!

Well, can you imagine my surprise when I spotted my first potato plant showing through? This is one of about 5 of my first earlies! At least I could now identify the difference between my potato plants and the brambles that were starting to rear their ugly heads again - they came out "extra quick" I can tell you!!

I went on to weed around one of my raised beds. I think Susan plans to phone a local timber company to see if we can get some free wood chips - I must remember to ask her about that!

My next job was planting the Dwarf French Beans, but first I stopped to chat to Perry. Soon 15 minutes had passed and as soon as Perry had gone - with his spinach in Sainsburys' plastic bag (recycling - the possibilities are endless) I realised that I had forgotton my courgettes and pumpkin plants.

Well I was not surprised really - the strain of the wheel barrow that morning was huge - it was so heavy because I had a full bag of mulch & the reason I had this mulch with me was because I had read over breakfast, that courgettes and pumpkins like to be mulched in (and are very thirsty too) so I was immediately on the phone to hubby, who said he was going to pop down to see me later, asking him to bring my forgotten plants.

Back to the Dwarf French Beans - these were grown in pots at home. I had, about 1 week ago, also directly sown some of the same at the base of the sweet pea wigwam, but nothing was showing from them yet, so inside the wigwam, went the Dwarf French Beans.

Next to go in were the Main Crop Potatoes - I put in 2 varieties, one of which is Vivaldi, the other I cant remember right now!! I put these into holes, using my bulb planter contraption, which is the method I used for my Earlies & Late Earlies, and as this method had worked so far, what was the point of digging a trench? I soon realised that I had enough space in that row to plant my 3rd variety, Mayan Gold, so I will go back there today and put those in & get the name of the other variety at the same time.

Following the potato planting came the Chilli plants and Peppers which had both been in the cold frame for the last couple of nights, so a row each of these in Bed 2 in front of the Sweet Pea Wigwam.......

As you can see, this bed is looking quite full up now, but there is still room for more - it's just my plan (above) that is looking full!

So, under the watchfull eye of Dibble, the Chilli plants and peppers were watered well and then covered with an open ended plastic polytunnel, which I will check later today (Sunday). Olga from Plot 138, kindly gave me some onion sets, so I put in a row of these. My other onions grown from seed and my onion sets which are interplanted with my carrots (bed 1) are both doing well, so another lot won't hurt!

Next to go in were the Courgettes (Zucchini) and Pumpkins which hubby Ian kindly brought down to the lotty for me. My fellow allotmenteers couldn't believe their eyes when he turned up in his Porsche Turbo and lifted the bonnet - as this is the boot (storage area) and brought the plants out!!!! Ha ha ha. Anyway, these went into the bottom of the potato plot (bed 4) which I had put some horse manure compost on. I put in 2 x pumpkins and 4 x courgettes, mulched them in and then covered them with plastic bell cloches.

So, nearly 4 hours later, 2 mugs of freshly brewed tea, a long chat with Mavis, a visit & delivery from Ian and having negotiated the old delapidated shed which is currently just about standing on Paul's Plot, I was ready for home. Once there however, I got stuck into washing out pots and seed trays etc. as the weather was so nice, it was actually a joy to do this outside.

I then looked at my "left over" carrots that were still sitting in modules. I decided to pot these remaining 4 plants into a patio pot to see what happened. As I was lifting one of the plants out, the compost fell away, and I was amazed to see a tiny baby carrot in my hand! I had to call hubby Ian quickly, to take a picture......

So, into the pot it has gone, along with the other 3 plants and I will let you know what happens!

Today is Sunday, and the weather forecast is not great, cloud cover is prominent, but it does look as though it is trying to "cheer" up a bit. I will go to the lotty later to check on my newly planted veggies and to put in the final lot of maincrops.

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