Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Damn - October already?

Oh, hey, look I KNOW I've not done an update since the beginning of September and I KNOW there's no pictures with this one but that's just the way it goes sometimes, doesn't it?!? I promise I'll take the camera next time (probably later on this week) and just take a whole bunch of pix.

First things first - just how mental is this weather? Just after I last posted it got cold, then we definitely did have an Indian Summer for about a coupla weeks which was most welcome, then it got a bit colder, and now it's raining but unseasonably warm!! Every time I go to the plopment I have to take a change of clothes because I don't know if it'll stay the same from one hour to the next....

Right then, to business. With the help of The Husband, we've managed to clear the beds that S dug while she was working the plot which meant, rather sadly I suppose, that I've had to dig out the 2 rhubarb plants she put in (mostly because I don't think I'm going to be growing rhubarb and, if I did, it wouldn't be where she'd planted them) and about a gazillion self-replicating strawberry plants (I AM going to be having a strawberry bed but, again, not where she'd put them and probably a different variety), so I'm starting with a clean slate. Also we took out about 10 pounds of Desiree potatoes! We ate the bigger ones but I have to say that I'm about to chuck out the little fiddly ones that are left because not only are we eating hers, but also all the ones that I planted, so we're swimming in spuds!

The top half of the plot is going to be mostly dedicated to fruit so, to this end, we've planted two different varieties of Blueberry bush - 'Jersey' and 'Duke' - one is early fruiting, the other later, and I have a 'Patriot' on order. I've no idea what acidity the soil is so we just played it safe, got 2 smallish (40 litre) bags of ericaceous compost, dug big holes, filled them with the compost then stuck a blueberry bush in each, watered them in and are hoping for the best.

I have many other things on order - 3 Blackcurrant bushes (Wellington XXX), 2 Gooseberry bushes (Langley Gage), 2 Raspberry varieties (Autumn Bliss and Glen Prosen), Strawberries (Aromel), and 1 dwarf Cherry tree (Maynard). I'm also looking into apples and pears but they need to be on very dwarfing root stock and we've not decided what varieties we want yet. I've decided against Redcurrants because we don't eat them now so god knows what we'd do with a bushfull of them.

Yesterday, while it was dry, I took the opportunity of planting 200 overwintering onion sets, consisting of 100 'Swift', 50 red 'Electric', and 50 yellow 'Shenshyu' varieties. I also put in cloves of Solent White and some other kind of garlic whose name I've forgotten.

Last week I cleared the Sweetcorn (as they've now finished) and weeded where the French Beans were (leaving their roots in the ground as they fix nitrogen into the soil) and put in 6 red cabbage, 4 spring cabbage and 12 sprouting broccoli seedlings for brassica fartiness next Spring. We've been eating the Curly Kale (in a fabulous pasta dish which includes bacon, anchovies and chilli, topped with grated fresh parmesan - yum!), and we've had one meal with the Brussels Sprouts, so it's all coming good. Although I do need to find a recipe that uses Chard - any ideas?

My coriander has gone beserk and I'm planning on doing something with the seeds, and the Sorrels are also clambering all over the place - think I'm going to have to thin them for next year. The peppers have done their darndest but none of them turned red. Oh well, I want to grow Chillies next year anyway so may have to rig up some kind of glass frame to go against the shed, into which peppers could go as well.

I think that's is for the time being. I'll put up piccies in the next few days...

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