The Allotment Wife


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The Allotment Snake Whisperer!

Never say allotment life is dull! I managed to rescue a female grass snake who was totally tangled up in some fruit netting on the allotments today. Luckily, I LOVE snakes and this was one absolutely beautiful. It took me about 5 mins or so to cut her free and then, after K had taken a quick snap, I let her go in the hedge. She slithered away quite happily. Just call me the Allotment Snake Whisperer, LOL!

Grass snake rescue

In more normal allotment news, everything is growing fairly well, probably due to the whole week of rain that we’ve just had. However, some wicked creature has eaten all my lovely coreopsis, sob! I suspect a rabbit or a pheasant, but either way I’m not impressed …

Coreopsis

However, the carnations have survived the onslaught, as have the cosmos and the verbascum.

Carnations

Cosmos

Verbascum

There are more lilies in bloom this week, and the sunflowers have grown taller, hurrah!

Lilies

Sunflowers

The autumn raspberry area has now grown so thick that I can’t get in to weed any more. I just have to rely on spotting any tall weeds and pulling them out if I can reach them.

Autumn raspberries

The lettuces are doing well and the mangetouts have exploded!

Lettuces

Mangetouts

This week, we planted cabbages – which we’ve never grown before so this will be a voyage of discovery for us. We netted them which should keep off the butterflies and pigeons, we hope …

Cabbages

We’ve also planted out two courgettes – a green one and a round yellow one (which is already in flower!):

Courgettes

We brought leeks to plant but there is no room! So we have planted them under the climbing beans for the time being – though I suspect it will be too shady later on for them, so we may have to rethink it.

Leeks

Here is the harvest of mangetouts, verbascum, lilies and carnations:

Harvest

And here are the vases at home:

Vases 1

Vases 2

Have a lovely Sunday, and watch out for snakes, LOL!

Anne Brooke Books

 

 

 

 


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Nibbly Creatures

Lots of nibbly creatures both on and off the allotment this week … here is the sweetcorn section where the middle is all but missing. Pigeons? Mice? Who knows. But we are not amused!

Sweetcorn

We also struggled with lettuce planting last week as the pigeons (or mice!) had had a good go at them before we even arrived at the allotment – you can just about see them here, still hanging on – just – at the bottom left of the really lovely lettuces (hurrah!):

Lettuces

Anyway, the beetroot section is doing well, and we even have one or two mangetouts lurking amongst the leaves, well gosh:

Beetroot

Mangetout

The autumn raspberries are growing well:

Autumn raspberries

And the flower crops are doing well too. We have the first of the lilies out:

Lilies

The carnations are still being totally amazing and I picked 128 of them – which is only about half of what I picked last week!

Carnations

The verbascum is still blooming:

Verbascum

And the sweet peas we thought were a goner near the shed have a sudden lease of life:

Sweet peas

Today, I planted the rest of the gladioli bulbs so that’s filled up a bed nicely. I also planted some coreopsis (which I picked flowers from before taking it to the allotment). They are a type called Golden Sphere:

Coreopsis Golden Sphere

Plus I thought I’d plant some annual flowers for the first time so here are four new pelargoniums – which again I picked before planting. I’m astonished about how beautiful the flowers are in a vase (see later) so will definitely do this again:

Pelargoniums

Here is the harvest of three mangetouts(!), verbascum, lilies and carnations:

Harvest

And here are the vases at home. The pelargonium flowers are on the right between the carnations and the verbascum – I think they’re gorgeous. And the coreopsis are on the left.

Vases 1

Vases 2

Have a lovely weekend.

Anne Brooke Books


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Bean Planting

A whole 2.5 hours on the allotment today, go us! Everything – including the weeds! – is really starting to go for it, so a lot of hoeing got done.

We also planted a bed full of French beans and runner beans, and tied them up with string to try to keep them (vaguely …) under control.

French beans and runner beans

We have added extra sweet peas at the end of that bed, and just between the lilies and the sunflowers:

Sweet peas

Speaking of lilies, don’t they look marvellous? Those buds are really coming along well.

Lilies 1

The asparagus has been very keen this week so we have enough for at least a couple of meals, which is grand.

Asparagus

We are also pleased with the lettuce …

Lettuces

… and the beetroot – which always look so terribly fragile when you first plant them but soon bulk up:

Beetroot

The potatoes are doing fine:

Potatoes

And just look at the mangetouts!

Mangetouts

Turning to flowers in bloom, the verbascum is simply marvellous:

Verbascum

And the carnations are just coming into flower too:

Carnations

However, the gladioli seem to have a mind of their own and have skipped a couple of rows in my succession planting plan, LOL:

Gladioli

No idea what’s going on there!

Anyway, here is the harvest of asparagus, verbascum, some sweet williams and a few carnations:

Harvest

And here are the vases at home:

Vases 1

Vases 2

Have a lovely bank holiday weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


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Sunflower Planting

Yes, it’s that time of year once more and we have planted some sunflowers. Here they are before and after we tied them to canes:

Sunflowers 1

Sunflowers 2

I also planted another 20 gladioli in 2 rows of ten. I really need some more for succession planting but I suspect I might be too late for this now! Anyway, here are some we planted earlier:

Gladioli

The lilies are also going for it so I gave them a good spray today so the dreaded lily-beetle can’t get in there:

Lilies 1

Lilies 2

We also have a few verbascums on their way but I won’t be picking them till at least next week:

Verbascum

Meanwhile, a few alliums have come up unexpectedly next to the lettuce – so a nice surprise there. I’m planning to take them up and plant at home later.

Lettuces and alliums

There are plenty of asparagus spears today so that’s Sunday lunch veg sorted.

Asparagus

The young beetroot plants are coming along too, and I have put slug pellets down to keep them safe.

Beetroot

The mangetouts have started to climb which is brilliant news:

Mangetouts

Not such great news with the sweet peas however – they’ve done nothing for a couple of weeks or so, sadly. So we have bought some more and hope to plant them elsewhere on the allotment to see if they do any better. It’s a shame really as for a couple of years the sweet peas did so well – I wonder if it’s because they don’t like the pine needle compost we’ve been using there … Something to ponder …

At least the potatoes look happy!

Potatoes

And here is the rhubarb which, again, isn’t doing brilliantly now but I still managed to get a few stalks for Sunday pudding.

Rhubarb

The spring onions and shallots are now putting on a growth spurt – but don’t ask me which is which in the photo as I’ve already forgotten what K told me! I think the shallots are the taller ones? But I could be wrong …

Spring onions and shallots

And the sweetcorn has survived one week already, hurrah!

Sweetcorn

I thought I’d also add in a view of the allotment so you can see how things are getting along as a whole:

Allotment View

Here is the tiny harvest of alliums, asparagus and rhubarb:

Harvest

And here is the vase at home:

Vase 1

Vase 2

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


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Sweetcorn revisited

We’re having another go at sweetcorn this year – it wasn’t very successful last year but we’re hopeful! Here’s hoping the squirrels don’t find it all first …

Sweetcorn

We’ve also planted two marrows and two pumpkins, and we’re hoping they might be big enough for the allotment show in August, so fingers crossed.

Marrows and pumpkins

There is more asparagus in the bed this week so that’s good news:

Asparagus

I did weed that bed after taking the shot – honest!… I also weeded the beetroots, though had to be a lot more careful there and did most of it by hand:

Beetroot

The lettuces and mangetouts are continuing to do well:

Lettuces

Mangetouts.JPG

Sadly, the sweet peas aren’t doing much, but it’s early days. As a total contrast, both sets of lilies are really getting tall now:


Oh, and the carnation mound is also looking good:

Carnations.JPG

And the gladioli are coming along:

Gladioli.JPG

The rhubarb is also okay and I managed to get a few stalks to add to the apple crumble I’m planning for tomorrow’s lunch:

Rhubarb

Here is our mini harvest for today, including the last two tulips, asparagus and one lone potato! I also remembered to harvest the rhubarb at the last minute, but it’s not in the shot today:

Harvest minus rhubarb

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books


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Rhubarb Season

At last – it’s rhubarb season on the allotment and we’ve eaten the first of the crop today, hurrah. That said, I suspect we’re the last to harvest our rhubarb in the village, probably due to the fact we’ve not mulched it for a couple of years, wicked us … Will try to remember to add mulch some time soon!

Meanwhile the mangetouts are hanging on in there, and we’ve put slug doom on them today to give them a fighting chance:

Mangetouts

Today we’ve planted lettuces and onions to add to the range of crops we’re growing. K netted the onions to give them some protection as there appears to be a secret onion chewer at loose throughout the plots – possibly rabbits, grr!

Meanwhile the autumn raspberry area is coming on well, and I’m trying to keep the weeds seriously at bay as it saves so much angst later on when I just can’t get in.

Soft Fruit

There are still a few daffodils about:

Daffodils

But it’s the tulips who are queen of all they survey right now. I do so love the striped ones – they’re amazing.

Tulips

And even the lilies are looking hopeful.

Lilies

I’ve also planted another couple of rows of gladioli that we bought yesterday, and I have another thirty left to plant over the weeks ahead. If I run out, I’ll get more as it’s nice to have some later blooms. Plus one of the earlier gladioli is already on its way!

Gladioli

Here is the harvest of rhubarb, tulips and daffodils:

Harvest

And here are the vases at home:

Anne Brooke Books