Sunday, March 27, 2011
Friday 25th March 2011 - weather: blue sky sunshine Actually, the date is a bit of a fib as I went to the allotment on Thursday and Friday. The weather was gorgeous, so much so, I actually got a bit of colour on my otherwise palid skin. Both plots look great. All weeded, all neat, all ready for this coming year. First job on Thursday, spuds in. International kidney, Kestrel and Maris Piper. I do normally grow more but always have mixed results, and last year we were lucky to get half a sack from a row thanks to the lack of rain, so this year I am scaling down. I may well get in a row of Pink Fur Apples yet but I am not decided. Then followed lots of little jobbets. Planted 3 stray strawberry plants that I had at home. Planted a row of you pea plants which I had started at home a few weeks back. Pulled some rhubarb, picked some spinach and cut a handful of white sprouting (photos to follow). I also sowed a row of carrots, parsnips and beetroot. Last thing was planting a pot full of broadbean plants - 12 in all - that I had brought for a pound from the little local country market. It wasn't a full day on the plot, I didn't arrive until nearly 11, and after a chat with old Jack, that was my day filled. Friday was much of the same. Again, I didn't arrive until 11 but sowed 2 short rows of radish, a patch of carrots, a patch of mixed salad leaves, planted 12 cos lettuce plants under glass and sowed a patch of calendulas. I sowed 2 rows of peas and rather daringly, I sowed half a row of climbing French Beans. I did give them the protection of a corregated plastic sheet which should keep the worst of the cold off....if only it were as easy to keep the mice off. I also moved a large sheet of weed supressing membrane from allotment one to allotment two and pinned it down ready for the squash plantation. Husband has purchased a mass of cheap tent pegs so I will be able to put down the rest of the membrane. It is such a godsend as I means I don't have to waste so much time weeding and it keeps the ground beneath damp, great considering the constant lack of water on our site. I had a long chat with Lorette, our site secretary, and we watched a bird or prey way, way up in the thermals and she reakoned it was a Black Kite as they have been spotted in the area this spring. I left with an armful of daffs and a big bunch or rhubarb and a big smile on my face. I am so ahead this year.....don't fear readers....this efficiency won't last. NB: Quails eggs hatched...not great odds. From the 7 eggs, only 3 hatched. Two were infertile, the other 2 had chicks in which didn't make it. However, 3 is better than nothing and it is the beginings of our new flock. Two are pale with faint stripes and the last is much darker, and bigger, with thick dark stripes. We had also ordered more eggs from another breeder, this time, English Whites, and they are safely tucked up in the incubator due to hatch in 17 days. Yes yes, I do have photos, but they are on the camera which is downstairs, and I am upstairs and it is nearly 11pm so I am going to wimp out and sort them out tomorrow to post. Thank you for your continued patience.