Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Cleaning tools and taking end of October photographs.

The weather was particularly warm today.

Cleaned tools. 
Probably for the first time ever, I have had time to clean my tools off properly.  I brushed them to get off most of the soil then washed them with a wet rag.  After this oil was painted onto them with a paint brush.

Cleaned tools
They look great but, with the warm weather we are having, I will want to use them again before the winter weather sets in.
Cleaned gardening tools
I put my tools into an old tub so that they will not fall all over the place.  The oil container and the paintbrush  are on the floor.
I went round taking photographs again to show how the allotment is changing during the late autumn.

Grazing rye on top bed
After digging in the pea and bean plants, grazing rye was sown.  It has germinated in the warm weather.  I will leave this bed now until the spring when the grazing rye will be dug in and roots will be sown.

There is a squash in the background
The squash has been left in because it is still producing. Squashes in late October!  

New strawberry bed is established now
I planted out the strawberries during October and they have established themselves really well now.  The purple sprouting broccoli has been described as palm trees.  The size is unimportant.  I would like to see some broccoli flowers coming.
Brussel Sprouts
Brussel sprouts are doing well but they need a little tidying up.  I will take off the yellow leaves and earth them up a little more to stop them leaning over.  

Vetches and tares green manure
This is the bed that had the runner beans and the sweet peas on.  These were dug into the soil and green manure sown.  This bed will be left until the spring when brassicas will be planted.  

Blackberry and sweet cicely
I cut the sweet cicely right back and put the tops in the comfrey bins to make liquid manure.  The old fruiting canes of the blackberry were cut out and the new canes tied to the supports.  I am going to put another blackberry at the other end of the supports.  I got three  blackberry cuttings from Mike and have already potted them up in a 1:1 compost and sharp sand mix.

The leeks are covered against the leek miner fly.  I don't think that they will be affected but I don't want to take the chance.  The leeks outside the enviromesh seem to be growing well despite not being covered.  There are some big celeriac stems and I am using them for soups at the moment.  

This is what I am using to make soups with too.  I grew some average sized pumpkins this year and this is the biggest one.  They will be harvested in the next few weeks.
I had one measly yellow flower on my Oxalis Tuberosum.  I am wondering if I should dig one of these up and have a look to see if they have produced any tubers.
Winter leaves
There are some rocket, American landcress and lamb's lettuce in here with some green manures.  I have planted two rows of garlic in between but they are not showing yet.
Broad beans
These broad beans may not do very well particularly if the cold weather comes soon.  I am really using them as a green manure.  They were grown from saved seed.  I have planted the tulips between them and I am hoping that the tulips will be over before I need to plant the pumpkins and courgettes.
Horse muck for the potatoes
I have put some horse muck here for the potatoes.  The excess strawberries will be dug into the soil.
I am going to move the sundial next to the shed.  It will be shaded there but it is just for show in any case.  

Roots bed
Still plenty of roots left in this bed.  I will need to start eating a lot more to get rid of this lot.  I need the space to dig in the horse manure for the potatoes.  I have finally taken some cuttings of the gooseberry and potted them up in a 1:1 compost and sharp sand mix.  They are at home in the greenhouse.


  1. Don't lift the oca till it's died right back, as the tubers will still be growing. Mine flowered too late to have any chance of getting mature seed off it.

  2. Thanks for that Robert. I don't know when the oca will start to die back because this warm weather seems to be ideal for them.

  3. Just waiting for temps to drop below 10 degC as I want to lop my roses right back (something I should have been brave enough to do last year). No point waiting for a frost as it might never come, here we are in November and we're still seeing a diurnal range of 13 - 20 degC!