The Allotment Wife


Leave a comment

Carnation Posy

Much to my delight, the first of the carnations are in bloom at the allotment today – I’ll definitely be bringing some more up to plant alongside them – I do so love that spicy scent of cloves they have.

Carnations

We’ve also now dug up the daffodil bulbs for storing for next year – there seem to be loads of them too. Much more than before – I will have to bring up yet another big pot to put them in! We’ll probably plant some of the Brussels sprouts plants in the bed that is now spare, but will have to see how things go.

Daffodil bulbs

I also planted the rest of our gladioli bulbs so there is now a whole bed of them. The asparagus is also doing well and there was plenty for today’s lunch, hurrah:

Asparagus

Here is today’s harvest of verbascums, carnations, asparagus and rhubarb (the latter of which I added to today’s apple crumble – yum!):

Harvest

Here are the vases at home:

Vases 1

The verbascums do straighten out once they’re in water but look like a weird alien at the moment, LOL!

Vase 2

Have a lovely Bank Holiday and stay safe.

Anne Brooke Books


2 Comments

The Spring Spurt

First of all, a very happy Easter to you all, especially in these tricky times. But, goodness me, lots of activity on the allotment today. First of all, we have our first asparagus, hurrah!

Asparagus

And the rhubarb is now big enough to harvest, well gosh. It’s a bit late to add it into my Sunday crumble, but I’ve found a recipe for rhubarb puree/juice which you can add to gin, ice cream etc. Hmm, gin – brilliant for lockdown, I’m sure!

Rhubarb

The lilies are also growing well and so I’ve now sprayed them against the dreaded lily beetle:

Lilies

But look at these tulips!

Tulips

Today we took along some of our sweet peas and have put them against the shed (with mulch) and also at the end of the potato bed. We’ve watered them in and put down slug pellets as usual:

Sweetpeas 1

Sweetpeas 2

As for the gladioli – start planting in May, they say – they’ll be fine before then. Um, well, I don’t think our gladioli bulbs from last year had that memo as they’re already sprouting in their bucket in the shed!

Gladioli 1

So I’ve planted them out into 4 rows of those with the longest shoots and will try to keep to succession planting (so they bloom at different times) by adding a couple of rows each week or so until last year’s bulbs are used up. We’d usually try to get some new ones as well, but of course we’re not sure if we’re going to be able to do that this year.

Gladioli 2

Here is the harvest of daffodils, tulips, asparagus and rhubarb (hurrah!):

Harvest

And here are the flowers in all their glory at home:

Vases 1

Vase 2

Vase 3

Have a good week, everyone, and stay safe.

Anne Brooke Books


7 Comments

Planting potatoes

Lovely sunny morning at the allotment today. I sorted out the weeding while K planted the potatoes – which are the last of the ones we have.

Potatoes

I’m pleased to say the rhubarb is continuing to flourish:

Rhubarb

And the autumn raspberries are starting to sprout for real:

Autumn raspberries

The tulips continue to make a lovely display, and there are also more to come which is great:

Tulips

Here is today’s harvest of tulips and a scattering of daffodils:

Harvest

And here are the vases at home:

Vases 1

Vases 2

Have a blessed Palm Sunday, everyone.

Anne Brooke Books


Leave a comment

Sleet and shallots

There I am, putting on my suncream for a good healthy once-a-day walk to the allotment with my husband, and a quarter of the way there, it is sleeting!!! Great news for the first day of British summertime, hey ho. Anyway the walk there and back was invigorating – to say the least!

Once on the allotment, we are surprised by tulips, hurrah:

Tulips

So lovely to see their beautiful colours. The rhubarb is also doing well:

Rhubarb

And we have planted our first crop of the allotment year – shallots!

Shallots

We made sure to put them in a side of the bed they’ve not been before, and also not to bury them too deeply as they do like having their tops showing (the picture shows them before planting however so they’re not that shallow, LOL!).

Whilst there I did a hoe round, though actually things weren’t too bad, and K mended another one of our raised beds, which was great.

Here is the harvest:

Harvest

And here are the flowers at home:

Vases 1

Vases 2

Have a good Sunday, and stay safe, everyone.

Anne Brooke Books


1 Comment

The daffodils aren’t over yet!

I might have spoken too soon when I said last week that we had harvested the last of the daffodils as this is the scene that greeted us when we arrived at the allotment this morning:

Daffodils

What do we know?! Nothing, obviously! Anyway, it’s a lovely day so I thought I’d take a picture of the whole plot:

Allotment view

As you can see, it’s definitely a time for planning ahead … Here’s a closer view of the tulips which you can see on the right of the above picture – they’re coming along nicely:

Tulips 1

Tulips 2

The rhubarb is also enjoying the early sunshine and I’m quite hopeful about it this year:

Rhubarb

Whilst at the allotment we chatted to a few people – at a safe distance of course! – and in general everyone is doing okay health-wise, which is good news. It was also lovely to get out and be active in a safe way without worrying about carrying anything nasty to anyone else.

Here is the harvest:

Harvest

And hear are the daffodils in their vases at home:

Vases 1

Vases 2

Have a good week, everyone – and stay safe.

Anne Brooke Books


5 Comments

March Begins

Really good weather today in spite of the storm we were forecast, so we made the most of it at the allotment by doing some weeding (me) and repairing some of the raised beds (Husband).

The walk across the field to the allotments is still like a marsh though! Thank goodness for Wellington boots – though of course the rhubarb is lapping up the rain. Definitely hoping for a better crop this year.

Rhubarb

Meanwhile, the tulip shoots are growing and some of them are even in bud, well gosh. Have to admit that the ones in bud aren’t the ones we actually planted in November though!…

Tulips 1

Tulips 2

Anyway, here is a mini-harvest of daffodils:

Harvest

And here they are in a vase at home:

Vase

Have a lovely start to March, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


11 Comments

Making the Most of Failure

As you may remember, our sprouts this year (for the second year running) have been a total failure (sob!…), so much so that they just look like tired cabbages:

Sprouts

So we’ve finally admitted defeat and taken them out to see what we could salvage, if anything. In fact, once home, I have salvaged some decent looking greens and a selection of very tiny sprouts that look SO cute, LOL!! We could probably eat them raw – they are that small! Here they are on our kitchen draining board:

Sprout harvest

So it just goes to show that there’s always something you can make of disaster …

Anyway, in other news, the daffodils are going strong:

Daffodils

And there is a rather nice display of tulips on their way in a bed where we did NOT plant them – I blame the squirrels though it’s more likely to be my total inability to find all the bulbs when digging them up, to be honest!

Tulips

Here is the harvest:

Harvest

And here is the vase at home:

Vase 1

Vase 2

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


Leave a comment

Daffodil Harvest

Managed to fit in an allotment visit first thing this morning before Storm Dennis hits us later on. Goodness, but the field we need to cross to get to the allotments was the wettest I’ve ever known it – like a marsh! We do appear to have some shed damage in preparation for the storm already …

Shed

K has slotted it back in but I’m not sure how long that will last!

Anyway, the daffodils are doing well – even the ones I abandoned near the compost bins are in flower:

Daffodils 1

Daffodils 2

And the single daffodil in amongst the leeks is happy too:

Leeks and daffodil

Meanwhile the tulip shoots are growing, which is brilliant news:

Tulips

And the rhubarb is looking good too:

Rhubarb

So today we have our first real harvest of some of the leeks and the daffodils. The leeks smell amazing – so much stronger than the ones in the shop!

Harvest

Here are the daffodils at home:

Vase 1

Vase 2

Stay safe this weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


2 Comments

A First Small Harvest

We have our very first (and very small!) harvest for 2020 – one lone daffodil that’s growing in a bed that … um … doesn’t have any daffodils in it. Then again, what do we know? Nothing, obviously!

Daffodil

Meanwhile, the daffodils that are actually in the bed we allocated for them are on their way, hurrah!

Daffodils

We were chatting with a couple of our fellow allotmenteers as well (hello, Pauline & Helen!) and Helen mentioned how useful she finds the GrowVeg site as a way of planning out the allotment, getting crop rotation under control, and getting reminders as to when to plant and harvest crops etc etc – so we will definitely look into that as a bit of planning is always a good thing when growing veg and flowers etc. Thank you, Helen!

Whilst there, we noticed that the tulips are now on their way, which is great news – so we’ve removed the netting and sticks that were keeping the squirrels away – as once the tulip shoots are visible, the squirrels don’t bother with the bulbs any more:

Tulips 1

Tulips 2

The second of the two tulip pictures above shows them growing in another bed where they’re not supposed to be as well! So they must have taken a lesson from that lone daffodil, LOL!

Talking of which, here is said daffodil at home in the vase:

Vase

Have a lovely Sunday, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


3 Comments

New Allotment Year 2020

Happy new year to you all! Yes, it has really taken me THIS LONG to get back onto the allotment – partly due to bad weather, partly due to inertia and partly due to 2 weeks of a pretty determined virus.

But I’m back now in the land of the living (hurrah!) and there’s a whole new allotment year to look forward to so it was really lovely to get out there today.

Here’s a view of how it looks at the moment:

Allotment view

As you can see, there’s not much going on, but we do need to sort those broken raised beds out at some point, and we also sorted out the weeds while we were there today.

The leeks we planted last year are still hanging on so we must harvest those soon before they give up entirely!

Leeks

We also brought along a bag of mulch and spread that across the rhubarb bed, which is already starting to sprout:

Rhubarb

I do so love a good mulch moment. In other sprouting news, the daffodil bed is coming along very nicely indeed:

Daffodils 1

And – just to show that daffodils are a whole lot tougher than you might think – we realised today that the daffodil bulbs I’d rejected as being too mouldy or too tiny and abandoned near the water butt for taking home are actually sprouting! So much so that they’ve rooted where they’re lying so I can’t move them to put them elsewhere, LOL! We therefore have a mini daffodil patch near the water butt – which obviously we would have planned for if we’d thought about it … um, not!…

Just goes to show, nature does what she darn well likes and takes no notice of our opinions!

Daffodils 2

Oh, and I also planted five new lily bulbs (Red Eye) in the second lily area – as we were out at the annual Potato Day in Whitchurch yesterday, and I just couldn’t resist them – alongside 8 new potato varieties to try, and some shallots. If you’ve not been to a Potato Day before, then I can thoroughly recommend it – you get lots of new potato (and other veg) varieties to have a go at, you’re helping to keep heritage varieties alive, and you get a whole load of good advice as well. What’s not to like!

Have a great Sunday!

Anne Brooke Books