Thursday 31 December 2009

Happy New Year !!! (read on for free gifts!)

Well nothing much is happening on the gardening front so I have nothing to report there but at the same time time I wanted to wish all my readers a very Happy New Year and what better way to do this than giving you all a great gift???

Sounds great doesn't it....problem is I don't have a gift to physically give to you, however I do have the means to point you in the right direction of a fantastic freebie and in turn give you a great gift!!

I will go back to how it all started. You see when I first started writing my blog it gave me an incentive to look for other blogs similar to mine so that I could see how they were getting on with their gardening and if I could pick up any tips from these.

I found many interesting blogs which I now follow and one of these blogs was called
It's a fantastic site which I encourage all my readers to go and check out. So I hear you thinking 'Is this where we get the freebie??', but no...the story doesn't stop there!

You see Kella is a very talented lady and a little while ago started up her own blog-shop called which is a wonderful blog selling lots of Kella's handmade jewelery and this is where the giveaway is.

Now I know that this post is promoting both of Kella's sites but I don't mind in the least as I have had much enjoyment over reading her blog posts and I would love for my readers to check out her blog too and see what she is all about and also go over and visit her blog-shop and take a look at the wonderful things she makes and maybe you will find something there that you want to purchase...maybe you will just enjoy the browse...but I hope you will enjoy it and I know you won't be disappointed that you visited.

So although you may be able to get a freebie from Kella's blog, that isn't my gift for new gift to you is giving you the chance to have a look at two great blogs that you may not have come across before!!

Wishing you all a great New Years eve and I will be back with more post in 2010 (which incidentally is, how time flies!!)

Sunday 27 December 2009

Gardening work at christmas.

snow scene
Well the last thing I thought I would be doing on Christmas day was anything to do with the garden at all...but upon getting up Christmas morning I discovered that I couldn't actually see my garden for all the white stuff!!! Yup, that's right, Christmas day was a white one in my little village....boy was it white...and the first white Christmas I have EVER got up to. It was a perfect still morning with the trees and hedgerows laden with snow, not a breath of wind, and the odd twinkling star!! I live not far from a town which didn't receive as much snowfall as us so I guess we were just the lucky, (or unlucky depending on how you look at it) ones.

It was a very pretty morning that really looked like all those pictures you see on the Christmas cards in the store. Due to the snow I spent over 2 hours in the garden shoveling it off the paths so that we could get around in relative was quite nice to be out there in the piece without traffic going by, I probably should have snapped a load of pictures but only got the one...Sorry.

Woke up Boxing day morning (that's 26th in England) to a much warmer climate and the snow all but disappeared but it is nice to know that throughout my lifetime I have seen a white Christmas!!

Happy holidays to you all. xxx

Monday 21 December 2009

It's 'Snow' go on the allotment!!

Well I did manage to get to the allotment over the weekend but only stayed long enough to snap a few pics. Nothing much is happening with the freezing conditions and the snow that is falling on a daily basis...on the bright was the shortest day so things can only get brighter from
here on out!!!

garlicbroad beans

broad beansfox printsrunner beans

allotments in snow
As you can see I'm a bit rubbish at arranging photos but in these pics you can see Kate's broad beans and my garlic doing very well. I also took an overall shot of the plot and one of the fox tracks and another of my poor dead runner beans which I never did manage to get down before the winter......I will get around to it as soon as the snow is gone!!

Sunday 13 December 2009

Tree Badge....Help the world stay green!!!!

Over at 'A Smallholders diary' I read a very interesting post about getting trees re-planted.

Being very into gardening and the allotment I am hugely into keeping the world green and the environment healthy and so I was delighted to read about this scheme that has started up. Now I know it is largely about promoting their blog too but I don't think this can be a bad thing when we can all work together on a large scale to get more trees planted on the earth improving it's ecosystem and restoring some of the natural beauty back to the world. We spend far too much time these days cutting back the greenery to put up new dwellings than we do working around what we already have to maintain what the earth has naturally produced!!

The sight that the badge comes from is a website called Here is how it works - by placing one of their badges on your blog, they will plant one tree. If someone then clicks on your badge and puts a badge on their blog they will plant another tree. Your badge automatically updates itself so you can see how many trees you are responsible for being planted. The trees will be planted on the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. All you have to do is make sure that you leave your badge on your blog until April 22nd 2010.

Doesn't seem to big a price to pay to be a part of this large scheme does it??? So I am hoping that you will either decide to click on my badge or add one of your own so that we can all start planting trees together!!!

You will find my Badge on the right hand side of my blog just below my entre-card widget..Happy clicking!!

Saturday 12 December 2009

The 100th post!!

Well here it is folks....the 100th post for 'allotments4you'!!

I actually wanted to make this a really big post about 'something', and it was going to be but I kind of find myself at a loose end at the moment (and I haven't been able to say that in a few weeks) and I just felt like writing so I fear that this is going to be a load of twoffle (don't think that is even a real word) about nothing and waste my moment of glory...oh well there will always be my 200th post I suppose!

So why do I find myself at a loose end??? Well it's just past midnight on a friday evening and when all is quiet in the house and everyone is sleeping peacefully I feel I can't sleep for fear of the little boy snoring softly on the floor in the lounge by the firelight (don't worry he is on a matress) who spent the last couple of hours throwing up. It wasn't pleasant but I'm hoping that he has now emptied his system and will sleep through the night...the last time he was sick he was so tired he could barely sit up bless him and until I know he has settled for good then I will not be able to settle for a little shut eye myself on the sofa.

Outside there is a fog rolling down the street and the clock softly ticks on the mantel.....times like this I find I always end up reflecting on my life....I love the peace and tranquility of a dark winters out in the country it is so quiet...sometimes you can hear the distant clacking of a train on the tracks but that is about all and I certainly don't envy anyone living in a town or a city.

I live in a humble little house on the edge of a village surrounded by fields and just a two minute walk from my is the perfect setting...and when I visit my allotment it is in such a location that you are surounded by fields and wildlife....what could be more perfect??

Maybe now is as good a time as any to tell you a little more about me?? But then again does anyone really want to know??? After all it's an allotment blog and apart from the location I haven't mentioned my allotment at all...(course that could be partly because I have been so neglectful over the last six weeks I haven't even set foot on it...whoops!!)

So where does this post go from here??? I haven't got a clue...I can tell you that my left arm is numb and my fingers are tingling due to the 'swine flu' jab I had earlier...and that is going to remain my excuse for any bad spelling mistakes...well that and the fact that I am using my Hubby's laptop...(It's ok...he's tucked up in bed too so he'll never know!!) and I always find it more difficult to type on one of these things!! Does anyone else out there find laptops more cramped up than a P.C.?...I suppose they have to be more compact but I find myself always catching extra keys with my nails....yes guys I have nails...but only because it's winter so they don't get so worn down like in the summer when I'm in the garden or on the allotment all the time ( Oh allotment reference...I think that's two now...impressed yet??).

Well I have just read back through what I've written so far and it really is a load of old tosh with nothing of value or importance at all...I sit here wondering what you would like to know in my time of reflection...and I haven't got a clue whether any of you are interested or not......ooohh...the snoring has stopped but he still sleeps peacefully...hope it stays that way for him....

I think when I first fired up the laptop I did have something to write...but now for the life of me I can't remember what...maybe I'm going little senile?? Or maybe it was of just so little importance I can'r even get it to float back into my head...or maybe it's just because it's so late and quiet that things want to keep floating in and out of my brain...(I think I have one!!)

Do you want to know the really bad thing? I actually have posts to write up that are to do with the allotment (YAY...A third reference.....ooohhh it's fun to type the word reference...try it!!) but I just haven't got around to it lately...everything becomes so busy in december with sorting out presents and cards and getting everything posted in time so you don't forget anyone that I have barely sat down at the computer and then when I did get chance had to spend ages reading up on the blogs that I follow the other night and posting comments....if you are one of those blog owners I am sorry I was so neglectful and please know that I will keep coming by and enjoying your blogs even if I don't get chance to post a comment....erm, think I went a bit off topic there...but I won't delete, because lets face it, where would be the fun in that!!

Oh yes...posts...hang on a mo...he's stirring.....nope it was more sick....sat up, opened his eyes...then laid down and we are back to snoring softly again...why did I even write that??? It's not like you would have known I'd left the computer...doh!

The posts...yes...I have several topics to cover..all of which are allotment (that's four!) related and I am seriously going to get back into the swing of things again and get these posts up on my blogs before christmas...and before they no longer have any relevance..which I suppose is kind of stupid because they will always be least more relevant than the garbage I am writing right now...but let's face it that wouldn't be hard would it!!

So where do I go from here?? Should I tell you about the posts that are to come?? No because that would mean I couldn't change my mind...and I like to keep my options I have to see about geting visuals..(that only menas photo's but it sounded good!!) too.

Well I have just glanced a the clock and we are now getting close to 1am so I think I should maybe call it a night...maybe I'll put a movie on..I bought 'My Sisters Keeper' earlier in the week which I haven't watched yet so I think that is the way to go for the rest the night.

Oh...we are going to be sick again.......

Hope you all are sleeping well and I will be back in the next day or so with a post about alloments!!

Friday 27 November 2009

The Peppers are finished!!!!

So here I am as promised with a post for you about gardening...or the lack of it depending on how you look at it!!!

Well my peppers have been an ongoing saga over the season and today with the sun bright in the sky and the wind a little easier than it has been of late I decided it that it was time to take the pepper plants up.

pepper plant
The Pepper plant looking a little sorry for itself.

I hadn't actually had any peppers off the plants even though I knew there were some there as they really didn't get big enough to pick but with the weather now getting colder (though it is late November so I guess I really can't grumble!!) I decided it was better to have a few small peppers than none at all!!!
green peppers
It doesn't look like too bad a harvest.....

Needless to say all the peppers were green and I didn't have a prayer of them ever turning any other colour but I did get a few small ones and they are edible so it wasn't the worst harvest in the world.

green peppers
However this was the biggest of the lot!!!

I have now decided that next year I will plant in tubs and keep them in the little greenhouse from the offset hoping that this way I will have a better pepper crop next year and we might even get to eat some with our summer salads!!! As it is this year they will be tossed into stir-fry's...or at least one stir-fry ....maybe two if they can stretch that far!!!

Wish me better luck for next year!!!!

Saturday 21 November 2009

Quick apologies!!!!

Hi to all my faithful readers...(god I hope you're still with me!!)

I just wanted to apologise for my long silence on my blog but I have been so busy I just haven't had a chance to post...and with the weather the way it's been in the U.K. the last week or so I certainly haven't made it to the allotment.

Well anyway I am grovelling for forgiveness and I assure you that this coming week I will have a little spare time so i will hopefully get up the allotment and see what damage has occurred with all the strong winds and also get something interesting up for you to read........well OK I can't promise the interesting part but there will be something to read.

Thanks all for be faithful and sticking around and please know that I have been enjoying your blogs in the absence of doing sod all on mine!!!

P.S. The reason the text is so big is so it kind of looks like a decent post...promise the next one will be...well something!!!

Sunday 8 November 2009

Autumn allotment planting.

Well I finally managed to get down the allotment this weekend so I can actually write a post ABOUT the allotment...after all, it is an allotment

Well I only went down really to out some broad beans in. The weather has been nice in my neck of the woods this weekend so it was perfect weather for planting. I decided to plant the broad beans in my raised bed as the earth is very fertile here an
d it needed no preparation...laziness really but at least they are in!

Out with the lettuce and in with the beans!!

I had to take up the lettuces first but probably just as well as we are predicted some ground frosts this week.

A few weeks ago I went up and planted some garlic in the raised bed and I was very happy on my visit to see one shoot coming through which is an improvement on the last time I planted garlic as none of it grew...but I will tell you about that another time!!

garlic shoot
My first EVER garlic shoot..yay!!

Saturday 7 November 2009

I recieved an award!!

Today I got an award from Ann at Ann's Snap Edit & Scrap.

Now I hope I have done this right as I haven't done anything like this before and I hope I haven't messed it up.

I thank you Ann for nominating me and I hope you continue to enjoy my blog!!

Not much of one to know what to do with things like this so I am hoping that I have done it right and I hope that everyone I send the award to will be happy with it!!

Here are my nominations for the award,

allot of veg
Allotment Blog
Blunders with shoots, bloss...
Kella's Musings on Growing ...
Mal's Allotment
Norfolk Kitchen
Our Plot at Green Lane Allo...
Realising the Dream
The Good Life

I know there aren't 15 but I hope this is ok!!

Here are the rules for this award:
1. Anyone awarded with this one must pass this “BEST BLOG” Award to 15 bloggers who he/she thinks have the best and greatest blogs.

For the new awardee…
2. To receive and accept this award.
  • Copy and save the award
  • Make a post in your blog about the award, like this one, but write in your own words, or at least a reasonable facsimile.
  • In your post, mention the name of the blogger who awarded you, and include a link to their blog.
Please do leave a comment in this post so I know you accepted the award. This lets me know so I can leave a nice comment in your award post too.

Friday 6 November 2009

Remember, Remember...what it's all about!!!!

Well it has officially passed....Bonfire night has come and gone again although we will no doubt be hearing the bangs and screams for another couple of nights yet.

bonfire nightIt was just a small family gathering.

We bought a few fireworks of our own this year and let them off in the garden as the organized displays are quite far away and to be honest have got a little ridiculous.

bonfire night
With some smiles!!

It seems to me that people have really forgotten why November the 5th is all seems to be about making money now with stalls and rides at some of the big displays which are organized...and I can't remember the last time I saw a guy on a bonfire. Does anyone remember doing 'penny for the guy'???

bonfire nightNot the prettiest of the fireworks but I was a bit rubbish at taking photos!!!

When I was a kids Guy Fawkes night was celebrated in the neighbourhood with all the neighbours clubbing in together and the kids used to make a Guy and go around and collect pennies for it which then was put towards fireworks and food. It was a big community thing and it's a shame that it no longer happens. I guess with all the people moving around these days and commuting so far for work you don't get to know people so much. It really is a shame that things like this have changed...I feel sad thinking that my grandchildren won't have that safe sense of community I had as a child.
And does anyone remember mischievous night??? I certainly do, though I probably won't remind the kids of that one!!!

bonfire night
And how many men does it take to light a firework???lol

So what did you all do for bonfire night??
Do you/your kids know why it's celebrated??

What is your most memorable Guy Fawkes night??

Saturday 31 October 2009

Happy Halloween...from a bad mum :-(

Well Halloween arrived is now just about over. It isn't widely celebrated here in the U.K. like it is in some places but you still get a few children who go out 'Trick or Treating' and there are some costume parties that go on and some pumpkins carved.

I don't dislike Halloween I just wish it took place at a warmer part of the year although I don't suppose we can grumble too much about it this year!

I didn't go 'Trick or Treating' with the kids this year but I did fully intend to carve some pumpkins with the kids...however the kids are all tucked up in's getting on for 11pm...and my pumpkins are still sat on the side...Whoops!!

I will probably carve them at some point, I guess we can always use them as garden ornaments for next weekend but we just didn't get around to it..and the kids never asked even though they sat on the side.

Pumpkins still waiting to be carved...whoops!!

You will notice they are in a carrier bag and this is because they were store bought. I didn't grow my own this year and if I'm totally honest I have never eaten pumpkin and don't really know what to do with it!! I fully intend to grow some next year though so maybe I will be more enthusiastic about carving them guy who grew them this year had one sooooo big it took two full grown men to lift it and it nearly tipped over the wheelbarrow...unfortunately I didn't get a picture.

So what did you do with your evening on Halloween??? And does anyone know any pumpkin recipes??

Wednesday 28 October 2009

Autumn is here...kind of!!!

Well it's been a while since my last post and I feel kind of bad for being so neglectful as I do have stuff to right it's just hat with half term being here I seem to have had less time than whilst working!! Not much is going on around and about...we moved the clocks in the U.K. last weekend so now it's getting dark at 5pm but weirdly it isn't that cold. I know it's autumn because the calendar says so...and some of the leaves are turning and coming off the trees but it is just so warm still and today was 18degrees...Oh well I guess I'll just make the most of it whilst it here...could be snowing next

Anyway although it is still quite warm the tomatoes have just about finished. There are still a few on the plants but they are very slow in turning and the leaves are curled and brown but I am determined to leave them on the plant as long as possible as I much preferred them ripened this way.

Still haven't been up the plot so I will hopefully manage this at the weekend and I can let you know how it's doing then.

tomato plant
Poor tomato plant!!

What's the weather doing where you are??? Is it as warm for you?? At this rate I'll need to cut the lawns again :-(

Wednesday 21 October 2009

Grape vines!!!

Did you see my title??? That's right...I actually said 'Grape Vines'...not plants or trees...aren't you impressed??? My Mum kept moaning at me for not naming them properly so I thought I should be a little more correct about the new fruits I was growing!!!

Anyway I finally got the vines planted today...I have to say i feel a little awful about having left them in the pots for so long but with other stuff that's happened i just didn't feel like playing in the garden.

Anyway they are in now and hopefully will thrive well. I have put these in the garden as they are going to trail and I didn't have anywhere sheltered to put them on the allotment. I am going to get some trellis and erect it for them to climb up and if they do well i may get a couple more for next year!!

grape vines
The Grape Vines in their new home!!

As for my dwarf nectarine tree...I think with the grape vines in residence it may not feel so lonely so I have decided to leave it where it is and get a few different fruit trees for the allotment.

I think the allotment is doing OK but I have to admit I haven't been back since Monday and even then I didn't take much notice of what was going on for obvious reasons so I will hopefully go and check on my beans at the weekend!!!

Monday 19 October 2009

R.I.P. Tiger-Lilly

Today was a sad day as we lost one of our cats...she was found just a little way up the road on the grass verge and had obviously been hit by a car. She was not my only cat but each of them are very different and have very unique characters and she will be sadly missed.

I write this post here as she was a cat that loved the great outdoors and would go wandering over the fields and even sometimes follow me to the allotment.

Tiger-Lily..with a character as big as a tiger's and a cat NOT prepared to be

So this was where I buried her.....on my allotment knowing how much she loved to be out sunning herself and also knowing that she will always be with me when I visit. R.I.P. Tiger-Lilly...we loved you and will miss you dearly!!

Saturday 17 October 2009

Can I have a little advice? Please.....

Hi All.

Well there has been some discussion on my blueberry bush and I thank you all for the info...whether it was good or bad news and now I just have to wait and see what happens over the next few months. I have to say I have popped up the allotment since to collect some tools and it is looking rather healthy but only time will tell fruit wise.

I had to go into town today (which is usually a major no no for me on a weekend) to take a dvd back and I had a quick wander down the market where I saw two rather healthy looking grape plants/bushes which I bought for the bargain price of £4.95!! I also saw some very nice frut trees which I think I will go down and collect in a week or so...(you see the sacrifices I make for my allotment..visiting town on a weekend!!)

Anyway the advice I wanted to ask you was about a fruit tree which is where all the other babble came from. In my garden I have a dwarf nectarine has been in the ground now for about 18months. I have never had blossoms or fruits
but it seems to be quite healthy. My question to oyu you think I should transplant it to my allotment?? It looks rather lonely here and I know some fruit trees will only produce with other fruit tress close by. I don't know if this is the case for the nectarine tree but I thought it may do better up the allotment surrounded by other fruit trees and bushes. So what do you think readers??? Move it or leave it??? Quite a big decision to make but it also needs to be a speedy one as I think next autumn would be too late and if I don't get it moved soon it won't be settled before the hard frosts arrive.

dwarf nectarine tree
Dwarf Nectarine tree.

I look forward to all your comments and decisions....Thanks!!

Wednesday 14 October 2009

Shopping Trip!!!

Well today I went out to Downtown Garden Center. I took my parents for lunch there as a treat and also had a good look round and picked up a few fruit bushes for the allotment.

I ended up with 2 redcurrant bushes....a blueberry bush and a red gooseberry bush...I even bought some lime for the blueberry bush :-).

fruit bushes
Today's purchases.

I wasn't quite sure what to do with the lime as I have never added it to my soil before so I just dug a deep whole....sprinkled some and then planted...I think this may have been wrong so I'm hoping I haven't done any damage...only time will tell!!!

I have planted all the fruit bushes within the gravel and also moved my existing gooseberry bush to the top end of the allotment as well. I think they will become very established here without hindering the plot...and it will look lovely in the su
mmer and make the fruits easily accessible!!

fruit bushes
All planted!!

I also got some cut price herbs, all of them had gone down to 49p so they have gone in with the other herbs on the real bargains this trip but I am happy that I got some fruit bushes...I would still like a few more but I am waiting for something that jumps out at me...loganberries are kind of doing that at the minute...hhmmm?!?!?!

Sunday 11 October 2009

Winter dig is finished!!

I got up this morning to a dreary looking sky and wet paths and gardens. As the son rose higher above the horizon it burnt away the clouds spreading warmth over the fields beyond my windows and that was when I decided that i was going to get the digging finished today....before the earth got to wet and heavy and the air too cold!!

So off I went to the allotment...I still had quite a lot to
do but as I had already took out the few weeds that had sprouted up and took up the remaining chilli plant, cabbages and leeks yesterday it really was a case of just digging. I went in the frame of mind that i wouldn't leave until it was all finished and that is exactly what I did. I think it took me a good couple of hours none stop digging...(and a lot of sweating...eewww!!) get it finished but I was very pleased when I came home and showered knowing that i was sorted for the winter!!!

I still have my runner bean plants in as they are still producing but I think it will be only a few weeks now before they come up as well. My broccoli and brussel plants are all looking quite healthy and I am hoping for a good crop next spring!!

I have to say after what i started with at the beginning of the year I am giving myself huge pats on the back for the accomplishments I have made this year. The allotment still isn't exactly as I want it but I know that by this time next year I will have everything in place...(at least I hope so!)

Doesn't it look great??

Saturday 10 October 2009

Busy Days.

Well we have had some decent rain this week so I decided it was time to start giving the allotment it's winter dig. I didn't get down the plot until 2:30pm so I didn't have much time but I got a good start getting about a third of the allotment rough dug and fertilizing as I went!!

I had a few weeds to dig out and a nasty patch of grass to get up but I got all that done first and so hopefully I will get back tomorrow morning and get the rest dug over and fertilized and then I can rest for the winter and plan for next spring.

I saw Kate up the allotment setting her winter broad beans and I have yet to do this but I will wait a couple more weeks before I set mine.

What I started with...and Kate in the background working on her allotment.

I am quite pleased with how well things have worked out this year and I'm just hoping I can do as well next year when I (hopefully) have a bit more land to work.

When I get it all dug over I will let you know and post a will be very not exactly pretty..but neat!! :-)

Thursday 8 October 2009

What to do with the chillis!!

I had a really good crop on my chilli's this year. I had 3 plants on the allotment...I didn't grow these myself but bought them from the allotment store at the bargain price of 20p a plant.

It is the first time I've grown chilli's and I will definitely grow them again next year!!

I froze some of my chilli's...first I chucked them in a pot of boiling water for about 30 seconds to blanch then and bring out the beautiful green colour and then sealed them in freezer bags immediately and when they had cooled put them in t
he freezer.

drying chilli's
Drying the chilli's

Some of the other I have chosen to dry...I am air drying them by threading them on to a piece of cotton and then hanging them up....some of them as they are drying have started to turn this normal for a chili??? Not ever having grown them before I really don't know!! When they have finished drying I am going to chop them up roughly and put them in a grinder...(you know the kind you use for salt and pepper)....that way people can add an extra touch of hot to their meal if they wish to...I usually do!!

red and green chilli's
See them turning red??

What do you do with your chilli's???

Wednesday 7 October 2009

Just a little looksy!!

Well as promised in yesterday's post I popped down the allotment this afternoon for a little look at what's been going on over the last week!!

I think the nice surprise this morning was the puddles on the ground due to horrific rainfall throughout the night so when I did get down to the allotment I was pleasantly surprised and how wet the earth was and how soft..(If I'd have known it was going to be quite that soft though I would have put my wellies on it was I had to scrub my shoes on returning home :-( ) Anyway back to the afternoon at hand. Thankfully my time spent weeding still seems to have paid off as i only saw one or two weeds and it is nice to know that when I go to turn the earth over...and the fertilizer the weekend I won't have lots of pesky weeds to remove.

A cabbage..haha

My runner beans are still producing and I got a good carrier bag full today so I was quite pleased...there are still some immature beans on the plants so I won't pull them out for a while yet.

The marrows with the powdery mildew are now looking quite healthy but have not produced me any more marrows and I doubt they will now so I will dig that up at the weekend.

moldy marrows!!!

My one remaining chilli plant has done well and I will also harvest those chillis and dig it up over the weekend.

chilliLovely chillis!!!!

In the garden the tomatoes are still turning but at a slower rate which is much better for me as I am not shoving quite so many tomatoes down the kids

Tuesday 6 October 2009

Oh rain :-(

OK...kind of an odd title I know but I was hoping it would make you want to read....I think my title is probably the most exciting thing about the post though!!!

I have to say I have been very bad and haven't even visited my plot since I put the gravel down...(I hope it's settled nicely now) and I just know I will have lots of beans that are now too big to pick and also plenty to harvest...than there was that left over chilli plant...and the marrow....oh cripes!!! I guess I'm off down the allotment tomorrow....I'm sorry I neglected you my dear leftovers!! :-(

Well I got up this morning to darkness...and as the sky lightened I saw dreary clouds and that was all...and then the rain started....the problem is there wasn't enough rain to improve anything so I am still no better off and although I will visit the plot tomorrow I know it will still be too dry to dig!!!!!

pepper plantYay...peppers!!

On the plus side my Peppers have started to be actual peppers....they are coming along nicely and although they may not get much bigger with the weather now getting colder there are quite a few that are of an edible size. I did nip out quite a few of the shoots a couple of weeks back as there were LOTS of flowers blooming and I wanted the plants to concentrate more on the veg it had already produced with us being so late on in the season. I don't know if this was the right thing to do but it doesn't seemed to have harmed the plants. The peppers have done quite well in the mini greenhouse and I think I may purchase an extra one next year for the soul purpose of growing peppers!!

Saturday 3 October 2009

Changing Seasons!!

Well I think I can safely say that autumn is well and truly with us. I got up this morning to se fast moving clouds which were dreary and saw the trees moving crazily in the strong winds. We haven't got the the stage where the leaves are falling thick and fast quite yet but I know it won't be long now with the drop in temperatures.

I'm still waiting for rain though. Although the weather forecast keeps threatening rain when it comes to us it is never more than just a light spattering that barely wets the pavement...let alone the earth!!!

I quite like Autumn arriving as life seems to slow down a little for me, the days get shorter and with the darker nights I can't be busy fro quite so long so it allowa for a bit of me time, to just kick back and relax with a good movie or book, I also find more time to write letters!!!

I've been worrying all summer about what would happen to my blog come winter time, after's not like you spend much time on an allotment in the winter so waht will I write???? Well I'm sure I'll think of something to write...I guess it may not be about allotments all the time but I will hopefully find something to will be fun to see what everyone else comes up with for the winter months too!!!

fallen tomato plant

Well with all the windy weather that has been about today my tomato tubs have blown over (AGAIN!!). So I have decided that for next year I am going to sink them half the tub depth into the ground therefore (hopefully) solving the problem for next year as we are bound to have more winds again!!!! I guess it will be this time next year when I'm telling you whether or not my solution worked...(god I hope I don't bore people so much that they stop reading by then!!)

Well that's all for now....anything exciting going on in your gardens/allotments that you can tell me about??? I'm feeling a little dejected that I have nothing to do on mine until the rain comes!!!!

Tuesday 29 September 2009

Ta- Da!!!!

Well I have finally finished the top end of the allotment........when I went looking at the builders merchants I had a lot of choice on what to pick but in the end I decided on your basic 10 mm gravel.

allotmentJust to remind you what the top end of the allotment looked like in February!!

I picked this for two reasons, firstly because it was the cheapest option and although I want my allotment looking nice and easy to maintain I really couldn't justify doubling the price purely because the slate was pretty and secondly because I had been too lazy to level the ground off properly and the smaller gravel filled in all those nasty little what do you think???

So what do you think??

I know it isn't going to win any beauty contests but it's neat, tidy and will keep the weeds away so that I will be able to spend more time next year concentrating on my actual plot instead of pulling up the weeds around the top end. I also now have somewhere nice to sit and have a drink or a bite to eat!!! Happy days to come!! :-)

allotmentThe gravel was placed here and had to be shifted to the top of the allotments!!

I think I should add a little thank you to two strong men.. (well my Dad and Hubby anyway!!) as I had to lug the gravel from one end of the allotment to the other and couldn't have got it done so quick without their help!!!

Saturday 26 September 2009

And it's finished!!!

Well I popped up the allotment this morning and spent a couple of hours finishing off the weeding and cleaning up the debris between the brussels and purple sprouting broccoli plants. That's it now....totally caught up with everything!! Obviously I haven't rough dug it for the winter yet but I am going to wait a while to do that as it's a long time since we've had any rain so this is my prayer for the future....a little rain to soften up the ground to make turning over easier. When I rough dig the ground over I will be turning in some fertilizer at the same time to re-nourish the ground for next season. I have bought Fish blood and bone fertilizer as it's totally organic and was very cheap from the allotment shop!!

I got asked if my name was Tanya when I was up the plot I'm always caught a little off
balance at times like this as I never know whether it's going to be a good or bad thing to own up....anyway I decided to go with honesty and it paid off as apparently I was quite a focus at the last committee meeting and everyone is very impressed with the work I have put in on my allotment and how much I have achieved in a very short time...Yay Me!!!! (don't worry I just about fit my head through the door on returning home!!!

O.K. to finish off a pic of my delightful blackcurrant bushes which I bought and planted yesterday....I love a bargain...still no luck on the horseradish front as yet but I'm sure we'll find something!!!!!

blackcurrant bargain of the week!!

Friday 25 September 2009

The allotment...prettying it up...and making life easier!!!

So I told you in my previous post about the 'Big Plans' I had for the top end of the allotment...well in hindsight I think I may have making a huge affair out of very little. My grand idea is to gravel...(or something similar)... the top end of my plot to keep all those pesky weeds at bay and therefore leave me more time to spend tending my veg.

This is what we started with.

So today I went to home-base and bought some plasticy stuff to lay in preparation for the gravelly stuff......(are you loving my technical terms?? hope I'm not losing you all with my jargon..LOL). Today was a good day to visit the store as it was a 10% off day......and also on my travels round the store I saw three beautiful blackcurrant bushes on offer at £1.79 each so snapped those up too!!!

Up here was originally where I wanted to put the blackcurrant bushes but the ground was rather hard and dry!!

So anyway I got all the plastic laid (with some help from my Dad!!) and it was really looking quite neat and tidy...but then as I haven't actually bought any gravel yet the carpets had to be laid back on top so that it would stay weighted down and not blow away in the wind so you will just have to imagine the beauty of it for now!!

Just her would have been a beautiful pick of my blackcurrant bushes...but I deleted it by mistake...whoops!!

After a lot of consideration I picked a place for my blackcurrant bushes and also got a bit more weeding done too...all in all quite a productive days work!!!!

So this is where we are at now...will look better again with the gravel but none the less a huge improvement...oh and the B.C. bushes are right at the other end.

Thursday 24 September 2009

Allotment Bargains!!

Well I went into town today and just as I said in my previous post I searched high and low for horseradish....unfortunately to no avail. The closest i came to was powdered stuff in the health shop but Kate said this would not be the same.

One guy in home base told me to try walking the railway lines as it is basically known as a pretty weed and it was the done thing to plant it along the tracks...maybe I will give it a shot!!!

bargain seeds!!!!

Anyway the day wasn't a total loss as I did come across lots of seeds on sale, now I'm not one for planning ahead much but I did buy up a whole load of seeds at cut price saving my self a small fortune next season..the best thing is they are all well dated!!!

I haven't been up my allotment since last weekend but I fully intend on going up tomorrow to finish the last bit of weeding and to sort out the top...I have plans for the top end...boy do I have can all see tomorrow!!!!

Wednesday 23 September 2009

Horseradish anyone????

horseradish plant
horseradish plant.

OK...this is just a quick little post to find out if anyone knows anything about horseradish!! Kate who shares the allotment with me has grown some mini cucumbers which she wants to pickle but one of the key pickling ingredients is horseradish root. Now I think in the future she may want to grow some but we would also like to know where the root can be purchased from!! So if any of you out there know where we can get our hands on fresh horseradish root to use and also horseradish seeds/plants then please let us know...Thank you.

horseradish root
horseradish root.

Tuesday 22 September 2009

Tackling the powdery mildew.

Well as was established on an earlier post I got powdery mildew on my marrows and cucumbers. I wasn't too worried as I was told it was quite common this late in the season and I had a really good run of veg. from both sets of plants.

powdery mildew
A reminder of the powdery mildew.

So I thought I would set to the task of remo
ving the plants from the allotment. However upon cutting back the marrows I found that there was some new healthy growth underneath and there were still some flowers blooming so on two of the plants I cut them right back and left the healthy growth. I have no idea if this will work but considering there was a possibility of some extra marrows I decided i wasn't going to lose anything from it!! I will keep you posted on the result!!

The healthy growth underneath the marrows.

I decided to go ahead and compost the leaves as the powdery mildew only lives above ground on live plants and therefore....(hopefully)....the composting process and then being dug into the earth will kill it all off!!

P.S. A quick apology for those whose comments don't show...I have had a few that have disappeared without a trace whilst trying to publish them but i am working on the problem so please keep commenting...Thanks.

Monday 21 September 2009

The case of the cauliflowers!!!

Well by far the worst crop I have had this year is my cauliflowers. I'm not really sure what went wrong...I manged to eat one and the rest were a total bust...anybody got and ideas what the problem was?? I started out with perfectly health seedlings which I grew and lovingly cared for from seed...and then....garbage!!!!!!

puny cauliflower
This was one of the better cauliflowers.

I don't know why this happened...when we dug them up they appeared to be regrowing from the roots...very interesting?????

bad cauliflower
This is what most of the cauliflowers looked like!!

Anyway someone gave me some all year round cauliflower seeds so they are in and I can see the shoots coming through and I will see if this crop fairs any better...any tips people??

cauliflower root growth
There was some very healthy growth below ground though?!?!?!

Busy, busy, busy on the allotment!!!!

pulling weeds and cutting back the cucumbers
pulling weeds and cutting back the cucumbers.

Well with all the beautiful weather we had over the weekend I managed to get lots of work done down the allotment and I have to add that I had some very kind helpers too!!!

picking raspberries
picking raspberries.

My Dad came down and dug up some of the deep rooted weeds for me and then the kids helped with the shallow rooted weeds and sorting out the cucumber plants as well as helping pick some more raspberries.....(yes they are still growing!!)......and runner-beans.

The last of the cucumbers.
The last of the cucumbers.

My patch is now looking a lot tidier and although I haven't finished all the weeding yet, I am hoping that now the weather is cooling off a bit not too many more will grow...(well one can hope!!)

this is half of the weeds we took up over the weekend.

One good thing was that the chair of the committee came over to have a chat with me about the half of a plot that i was hoping to have and said that although the next meeting isn't until January I will be told then whether I can have it...and that me getting this plot looks promising. I'm trying not to get my hopes up just in case but I have already started planning in my mind :-)

The allotment
The allotment so far, maybe I should have took a before picture too...whoops!!