Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Plot pictures

Thank you to Trevor at Digging for Victory for asking for allotment pics, it made me realise I hadn't taken any pictures since just after I put the spuds in, at the end of March. Funny how during May things turn gradually from predominantly brown to predominantly green, as everything fills out and takes off. At the moment it's still mainly brown, but by the end of the month I expect to see the balance tipped.

Things are looking so much better since we had a really good few downpours over the weekend. I have a full water butt now as well!

The tomatoes are all flowering profusely now:

I think these Sungold flowers are particularly pretty with their green stripe.

I have had to hastily erect my runner bean frame today, as the beans I put in just over a week ago are already 6-8" tall and look like they need to be planted out. I will harden them off for a few days and then they'll have to take their chances. If they are going to grow that quickly there's always time to plant some more if a frost gets them.

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Pond Life

As promised, here are a few pictures of the completed pond. This frog moved in the day after we filled it up with water, and as we were putting the plants in we discovered that he/she had been joined by a companion. A friend donated some floating weed and some snails, but we did also go a bit crazy at the garden centre. We didn't spend enough time getting the levels right (too impatient!) so as a result there is quite a lot of liner showing round the edges, and we thought the more plants we get the quicker they will be disguised. There has also been a lot of evaporation in this hot dry weather.

The cat is quite keen on drinking the water, but whether this is because he just likes the novelty of it or because he is developing some dreadful feline disease, is not clear. I suspect the former, as he still doesn't drink the water in his bowl.

We did have a bit of a frost the night before last, but luckily my potatoes got away with it, being in a sheltered corner by a hedge. I put a little heater in the greenhouse so those plants are all doing fine as well.

I'm going to start hardening off my outdoor tomatoes this weekend, but I won't plant them outside until the end of May. As I started them off so early, and they are quite advanced, I thought I would try rooting some of the sideshoots as cuttings, so that I have some younger plants coming along later in the summer. I have never tried this before but so far so good.

Back at the plot, the broad beans are starting to flower, and the Red Duke of York earlies are also developing flower buds. Most of the parsnips have come up, and spinach, carrots and onions are all doing well. Very few peas came up though, so I have re-sown, this time with pre-chitted seed, to see if that makes any difference... but nothing yet. If that fails, I will have to try soaking them in parafin first, in case it's mice.

STILL no rain - not a drop now since the beginning of April. It keeps being forecast but never comes, but fingers crossed for this weekend.