The Allotment Wife


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Naughty Nature and Compost Delights

Just one lone daffodil on the allotment today, so we have a flower gap – oh the horror of it!!

lone-daffodil

I have stuck it in a champagne glass at home to make it look less lonely, LOL. Still, other daffodils are on the way, but they look much smaller than we anticipated!…

daffodils-1

daffodils-2

Maybe I will have to get some small bowls to float them in as they don’t look tall enough for an actual vase. Naughty daffodils!

Speaking of naughty flowers, here is the raised bed from which (I promise you!!) K and I removed ALL the tulip bulbs last year. EVERY SINGLE ONE!

unexpected-tulips

Hmm, that worked well, eh. Nature is obviously fighting our plans at every step! I might have to take these out before they flower and put them in a pot or something. As we already have two whole raised beds where the tulips are actually supposed to be …

tulips-1

In more anticipated news, the lupin we were kindly given by an allotment neighbour last year is coming back so I’m looking forward to seeing that develop:

lupin

K has taken out the last of the sprouts (sob!) and dug that bed over. He also dug through the old potato bed and put compost on it. As I absolutely LOVE compost, here is a picture of the wonderful stuff!

compost

What could be nicer?

I also trimmed round the plot borders and did a hoe-through, and K and I shaped up the more overgrown blackcurrant bushes:

blackcurrant-prune

And here is the first autumn raspberry leaf, well gosh!

autumn-raspberry

A very small harvest today – just the last of the sprouts and that lone daffodil:

harvest

By the way, I took a fresh tea towel for the flowers (when we get any more!) all the way up to the allotment and then all the way back again, as I forgot to take it out of my coat pocket! I hope I have better luck next week …

Have a great weekend!

Anne Brooke Books

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Nearly Daffodil Time

The daffodils are nearly out on the allotment, hurrah! I might well pop in again this Thursday to see how they’re doing – it will be great once we can start having fresh flowers in the house. Plus other, later daffodils are also beginning to come up so that’s good too.

daffodils-1

daffodils-2

daffodils-3

Whilst there, K dug up the potato bed and I trimmed all the way round the allotment so it all looks a bit neater now, which is good news. I also hoed the beds and soft fruit area, which is much easier now the autumn raspberries are cut down, LOL!

K also shaped one of our older blackcurrant bushes to give it a bit of air and encourage growth:

blackcurrant-bush-1

blackcurrant-bush-2

blackcurrant-bush-3

We’ll do the other older one next week. Here are the spare canes, which we won’t plant as we don’t have much space at the moment:

blackcurrant-canes

So our harvest today is the usual sprouts and potatoes, but they’re always welcome!

harvest

And here are the sprout leaves, which we’ll use as compost:

sprout-leaves

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke


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The Winter Allotment

In today’s gorgeous light, I really do think the allotment looks stunning, if bleak:

winter-allotment-1

winter-allotment-2

However, even in the midst of this, the first signs of the spring to come are here already (hurrah!) and the January daffodils we planted in October are beginning to sprout:

daffodil-shoot-1

daffodil-shoot-2

Honestly, it’s such a sign of hope that I really got quite emotional about these! Anyway, not much else to do around the allotment – especially as the hard frost this morning means no hoeing though all the weeds are probably dead, LOL – so we got on with composting stuff from our garden. Here is the compost before it – um – composts:

compost-1

And here is the totally amazingly rich finished compost which we – yes, you guessed it! – did earlier!

compost-2

Meanwhile, the Brussels sprouts are growing apace:

brussels-sprouts

And we have even had our first sprouts harvest, alongside the winter lettuce and leeks, well gosh!

harvest-1

harvest-2

I love sprouts so much and am ridiculously excited about this too. What a day!

Have a fabulous Sunday

Anne Brooke Books


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The Composting Queen

This week, K has mulched the bed with the dahlias in – there’s honestly nothing nicer than a newly mulched flower bed!

mulching

And I am having great fun making new compost from this and last week’s pruning:

compost

It may not look like much now, but in a while it will be worth its weight in gold, I can tell you!

Anyway, I cut back the rest of the chrysanthemums as they’re all over now, and so our only harvest is lettuce, LOL!

harvest

At this rate, we’ll be having lettuce for Christmas lunch too – it’s the healthy option for sure.

Anne Brooke Books

 

 


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Farewell to Courgettes

The great allotment autumn cull these week. We’ve cut down the courgettes and the asparagus, which really neatens up the plot. Here’s the courgettes before and after – it’s done us proud in terms of cropping so we’ll definitely get the same (El Greco) again. NB Apologies for the quality of some of these pics – my camera phone was having ‘a moment’!

courgette-1

 

courgette-2

I’m sure the courgette skeleton is some kind of alien – or at the very least a baby crocodile! Here’s the asparagus before being cut down too:

asparagus

We chopped up both the courgette and the asparagus for the compost. Chopping the courgette is strangely tuneful as the stems are hollow (weird!) and so start off giving out a bass tone as you begin cutting them, and then end up quite tenor as the stem gets smaller. I’m sure if K and I could make a record of this, it would be a hit, you know!

The lettuce is also doing well and so we harvested some of that to last us through the week:

lettuce

The chrysanthemums and dahlias are also looking amazing and benefitting from the mild weather at the moment. We particularly love that burnt orange colour of some of the chrysanthemums so hope we’re able to get more for next year – this lot were mixed, so no guarantees.

chrysanthemums-1

Here is this week’s harvest, which includes chrysanthemums, dahlias, marigolds, coreopsis, beetroot and lettuce.

harvest

And here are the flowers in their vases at home:

vase-1

vase-2

vase-3

vase-4

vase-5

Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Anne Brooke Books

 


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The Day of the Dahlias

It’s astonishing how well the dahlias are now doing, and there are even more buds to come – should the weather be kind.

dahlias-1

dahlias-2

Not only that, but the asters look very pretty too:

asters

However, it’s still definitely autumn so everything is winding down – though I don’t think the courgette has yet got that message as it’s still producing fruits, and I harvested 3 of them today – more to come!

Anyway, I did a hoe round and also cleared the weeds on the paths, while K sorted out compost and tidied round the autumn raspberries bed – which are also on the way out in terms of produce, sadly.

Here is the harvest, which includes, a beetroot, courgettes, autumn raspberries, lettuce, echinacea, marigolds, coreopsis, asters and dahlias.

harvest

Here are the vases at home – I’ve tried to keep to a colour theme this time, and I think it works.

vase-1

vase-2

vase-3

vase-4

vase-5

Have a fabulous weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books

 


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Runner Bean Riot

Oo-err, we can’t get to the allotment for one week and the runner beans have gone mad! This is the trug I normally get everything in but not today …

Runner beans

The courgettes aren’t that far behind either and definitely have marrow aspirations:

Courgettes

I think courgette/marrow soup is definitely on the menu for us! Mind you, the beetroot are going for it too:

Beetroot

That should last us the week for sure. Flowers are doing well, and the gladioli and echinacea have bounced back:

Gladioli

Echinacea

And here are the sunflowers, getting even taller!

Sunflower

Dahlias are doing well as well, and are still blackfly-free, hurrah!

Dahlias

We’ve also got some crocosmia growing, though I had thought I’d taken them all home last year – obviously not! I shall have to have another go to get them home when they’ve finished flowering this year:

Crocosmia

Here is the harvest, which consists of gladioli, sweet peas, sweet williams, geums, dahlias, echinacea, coreopsis and marigolds.

Flower harvest

And here is the total harvest – also including some autumn raspberries!

Harvest

Whilst there today, K watered and I hoed, but there honestly aren’t too many weeds anyway, hurrah! We also did some composting using stuff from home, and took down the pea frames. I managed to get a splinter in my finger in the middle of doing that (ow! ow!) but thankfully K is a GENIUS at getting splinters out of fingers and managed to rescue me, phew. Heaven alone knows how he does it but it’s wonderful.

Here are the vases at home:

Vases 1

Vases 2

Vase 3

Vase 4

Have a wonderful weekend!

Anne Brooke Books