Sunday, 13 February 2011

February Allotment Photographs - not much change yet.

Not a lot of change from the January photographs but if I take photographs in each month then I will see a difference.  After a lot of hard work I finally finished off the comfrey bed, straightening the rows.  The new compost bins, made out of old pallets are helping to tidy away all the comfrey bins.  The comfrey is just starting to show now. 

February 2011 Comfrey bed

Comfrey bed January 2011
You can see the 3 foot slabs on the right hand side buried upright in the soil to retain the soil in the roots bed.  They took some effort to place properly. I am only going to move the butts out of the compost bins if I fill the other three up and I can't see myself doing that very soon. Still not a lot to see though - in the way of interesting growing things.  February is not really a massive growing month, however there is a lot starting to grow now. 

Strawberries and broad beans in the background.
I have left the climbing french bean poles on top of the compost bin to stop them from rotting and attracting slugs and snails.  I have left them out all winter and they seem to be alright.  I have put the compost Darlek on top of the rhubarb to force it.  I split the rhubarb and replanted it so I am not really sure that I am going to get anything from them this year.  A lot of the broad beans have germinated and are showing through now.  Each time there is a little warmer weather a few more pop up.  Not a lot of change in the strawberry bed.   You can see the charcoal from last years peas.

Potato bed after horse manure dug in.
I dug in all the fresh horse manure on the potato bed.  It will have rotted down really well by the time I plant the potatoes.  I will see whether the raspberries fruit well this year.  If not then I may move them elsewhere.  They get a little shaded by the shed.  The camellia is doing well in its pot but there are no flower buds on it this year.  The thyme growing in the slabs by the shed is doing particularly well even though I am constantly treading on it.  This is where I have been crushing the inoculated charcoal and inevitably some falls down the cracks between the paving slabs where the thyme is growing.  You can see the new slabs that I have put in around the bed to keep the soil off the paths. 

The pile of leaves in the background is the parsnip clamp. I took them out of the potato bed and stacked them here.  I will not need the ground until the onions are big enough to go in and hopefully I will have used all the parsnips by then.
The weeds next to the parsnip clamp are not weeds.  They are poached egg plant (Limnanthes douglasii), which I am going to use as a green manure and a ground cover plant below the climbing french beans.  The garlic is doing well now and you can see the inoculated charcoal from last year's potatoes.  The tulips are beginning to show through too.  If you look near Beryl's blue bin and my black Darlek bin you can see the cyclamen and blue species iris flowering away.  I wish I had taken a close up picture of this.  I might do that tomorrow. 

Posts for the sweet peas are in. 
You can see that I have got the posts up for some of the sweet peas.  I still need four more posts for another line of sweet peas and the runner beans. 

There are a few scraggy leeks in the foreground. I don't think they will come to anything before I need the ground for the beans so they will probably be taken out.  I will put them into the worm bin to recycle.  So just soil again.  The fox has been digging in this bed to get the worms.  

You can see the black currants in their new positions now. There is no big bud on them that I can see.  I hope that they crop this year despite being moved.  The fence post is one that I discovered buried in the allotment when I first took it over.  I have been using it to hold up the beans and the raspberries.  It  will be used this year to hold up the Cobra french beans. I will have another post at the other end of the french bean line.

Some poorly looking purple sprouting broccoli
This is the bed that I am going to tackle next.  I have had most of the Brussel sprouts so they will come out.  I will not put them onto the compost heap because they may have club root.  I will put them into an old compost bag and bring them home to put into the council green bin.  I always remove from the allotment anything that could remotely be diseased and put it in the green bin. The purple sprouting broccoli really look poorly.  I am still optimistic that they will produce something so I will leave them in.  Similarly the winter cauliflowers behind them look dire but I have seen them completely change when the warmer weather comes.    I have put a few leaves onto this bed to dig in when I have cleared the brassicas off.  I will also be digging in my own compost and some of Fred's that he has said that I could have.  If I can get any more horse manure then I will put it on this area.


  1. Glad I found your site I think I can get some good information from it,just wish my allotment will turn out as good as yours.

  2. Thanks Steve.
    I hope that you can follow what I write because it is mainly for myself. I need to convince myself that I am doing the right thing.

  3. By the look of what you have been doing you must be doing something right,it's my first time for myself to have an allotment and start to do a blog.I did start just to take photos of what I have done,then decided to write a little about some of the pics I have uploaded.

  4. It's good fun isn't it.

    The Royal Society has a moto that says: Take nobody's word for it'. The blog is just about what I do and you should not take it too seriously. I think I do.