Tuesday 5th September - Weather: warm but overcast
Yippee, the kids are back at school, so I arrived at the plot just before noon. Very muggy day but the cloud cover hardly broke. I did think it would rain a couple of times. Anyhow, the allotments are looking like tropical rain forrests, so let the weeding begin! Don't know why, but I started by pulling up all of the finished corns, snapping them down a bit and sticking them on the compost heap. Then worked my way along the strawbs. So many weeds the compost heap was soon overflowing! The big cooking apples have started to fall, so as I cleared around the strawbs, I picked up all of the windfalls that weren't to damaged and picked those on the tree I could reach. The other apple tree is good for eating and cooking, but the apples still resisted being picked, so I will leave them a week or two longer.
Took a break from weeding and filled my trug with tomatos again. Tonight I will cook all the toms I currently have at home down and get it frozen before they start going mouldy. Also picked yet more courgettes and cucumbers. Am at a loss what to do with all the cucumbers as they are coming so fast now! Also picked a handful of runner beans - enough for a couple of meals.
The squashes are all coming along nicely, considering a lot suffered in the drought and we lost several plants. I think this monster is called a swan guord. It is getting huge, and I have promised the children they can have one each to carve at Halloween - we like to be different! The melons are also getting bigger and bigger and I don't know if I should pick the biggest yet. I would hate to harvest it only to find it unripe. I guess whilst the weather is still so good, and the plant is still in active growth, I should leave it for the time being.
I have lots of things to sow, hopefully, over the next week and also my curly Kale. They will go on plot number 2 where the spuds were - which reminds me, now the top growth has completely gone on the Edzell Blues and Pink Fur Apples, I had better dig them up before any secondary growth starts, and the slugs move in!
Glad to say my globe artichokes 'Green Globe' are growing again. They have really suffered in the drought and completely died back leaving nothing more than a blackened stem. However, today I noticed that every plant has lovely new green shoots sprouting from the base. Now I feel guilty that I am planning to dig half of them up and shove them on the compost heap as I have decided we don't need that many plants as we don't eat that many artichokes! I will be giving the babies away to gardening friends who want them, and I might bung a couple in the garden as they make such stunning plants. I don't know if the cardoon will make a come back as he is in a similar state to the artichokes. Fingers crossed as I would be sad to loose that.
I have started to put together a spreadsheet listing all my seeds, sowing dates and comments so I can try and keep slightly more organised next year...famous last words! I also plan to sow at least 1 seed of every tomato, pepper and squash plant that I own, and any that fail to germinate will have one more sowing attempt, and if they still fail, I am binning the seeds as every year I seem to have a few that fail to come up. Anyhow, I have no idea if I can add a spreadsheet to my blog, but if I can, I will!