Thursday 12 April 2018

April 2018 at the allotment

It's been a tough couple of months for allotmeeters. If it hasn't been snowing then the snow has been thawing and soaking the ground. Add to that more water in the form of rain and you get the picture of just how cold and the wet the ground is. On the rare days of sunshine we've been trying to prepare the ground the best we can do in order to finally start off this year's growing season.

Thankfully I was able to sit on the side of HMS Strawberry in order to do the weeding and clear away the old leaves. There's plenty of new growth so I hope we get a good crop again this year.

Not just a bare patch of soil! Last year's sweetcorn bed is this year's onion patch. We have found the most effective method for growing onions is to place them on top and push them gently into the soil so just the tops are showing. At least the current soft ground is useful for one thing at the moment.

This year we will be growing beetroot for the first time at the allotment. Although you can start the seeds off under cover we will be sowing directly into the soil. We've picked seeds of multi-coloured varieties so hopefully we will get crops of the traditional red as well as white and golden beetroot.

The leeks haven't been the whoppers that we had last year. Indeed by this time last year we had dug up and eaten all of our winter crop of leeks. They have though been very tasty and went very well with our Easter Sunday roast lamb.

Rhubarb, rhubarb everywhere! The one crop that seems oblivious to the weather. The first stems will be picked in the coming weeks. I'd better use up the rhubarb that is still in the freezer from last year!
Finally, the first crop of potatoes have at last been planted. It seems very late to be planting first earlies but that what happens when you have to work around the weather. At this rate it won't be long before we will be putting the second earlies in.

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