Allotment Update No. 14

2011 May 2
by Chris Vernon

Follow the allotment series here.

Two reports, first from this weekend (1st May 2011) and below an update from 17th April.

1st May 2011
We are not alone! Not only did we have some very helpful friends digging, sowing and watering (thanks!), but we also discovered some interesting wildlife. Here’s the movie:

Turns out it was a vole! Here’s some more info on the critter.

The main task for today was to plant out the sweetcorn. We had around 60 plants raised in a propagator over the last two weeks.


Sweetcorn, 1st May 2011

Over winter we’ve had some black plastic laid over a 5.5 x 2m area. It’s done a pretty good job of killing the grass so the soil just needed digging over with added manure.

Sweetcorn bed

Sweetcorn bed

Despite trying to block any rabbit sized gaps in the fence, they are still finding their way in. All we can do is net the tasty leaves.

Sweetcorn bed

Sweetcorn bed, with netting

We also planted more carrots and beetroot, around a month after the first sowing, and a couple of kindly donated pumpkin plants (thanks guys!). The potatoes continue to grow at a remarkable pace, they are now far larger than the two week old photo below.

17th April 2011

We had been away for two weeks before today, all we could be sure of was that it would be dry! March and April 2011 have turned out to be amongst of the drying ever in the England: Farmers Weekly


Potato, 17th April 2011

The potatoes are really impressive, this photo was taken 28 days after planting on the 20th March.



The garlic, planted last year is doing well as are the cabbages:


Cabbages, 17th April 2011

They have since been nibbled by the local rabbits so we’ve now got them under netting.

As we’ve only had around 20% of the normal rainfall over the last two months everything is dry. We’re finding the two biggest challenges to be watering (we’re using a couple of hundred litres every two or three days) and the rabbits.

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