Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Mid June and the allotment is finally full

All the first sowing of celery went to seed so I have taken it out and put it onto the compost heap. In its place is a line of lettuce.  I also put in a line of asparagus peas Tetragonolobus purpureus, which I have not grown before.  I hope that this is a little more successful than the Ocra Abelmoschus esculentus, was last year.

I weeded and hoed between all of the rows on the top half of the allotment  then  fed everything with comfrey liquid fertiliser.  The enviromesh was  taken off the carrots, partially, and they were weeded and watered with comfrey.  The climbing French beans "Trail of Tears" is finally beginning to grow.  The problem  with the cold weather was that the beans could not grow fast enough to compensate for the damage that the slugs and snails were doing. With just a little more warmth they will shoot up the supports and produce some beans.

I have six lines of peas.  I don't know why but there it is.  Two lines of Douce Provenance, one line of Oskar, two lines of Early Onward and one line of Hurst Green Shaft.  It was the only way that I could get a succession of peas. Last year I tried to get a succession and they all came at the same time.  

To get a succession of vegetables you can do several things:

  • Use early and main crop varieties.  
  • Sow the seed at Monthly intervals - as far as I can see, if you so at smaller time intervals they all come at the same time.  
  • Think about  aspect - a north facing slope will slow the growth of some vegetables. 
  • Give protection in the form of cloches or poly tunnel to accelerate the growth of plants
Even doing all of these things you will get some plants catching up earlier sowings.  I am getting some overlapping with my lettuce succession.  I did sow the seeds at about two weekly intervals and this seems to be  much too small a time period particularly if you have to eat a whole line of plants before going onto the next.  

Strawberries have all produced a good crop of fruits that will ripen soon. No red ones yet but it is not Wimbledon week yet.  

The brassicas are suffering from cabbage root fly this year. I have hoed them all up so that they can send out adventitious roots  and this usually helps them a lot.  They all got fed with comfrey liquid fertiliser and the weeds  were hoed out.  I am leaving the nets on them until the end of June.  I can't have pigeon damage too. The slugs have decimated the kale and broccoli.  I have put a cloche over the survivors to see if I can bring them on a little.  Once they are over 20cm the slugs and snails seem to leave them alone.  

The runners are going up the cane supports as are the climbing French bean "Cobra" . They will be producing beans at the end of June given some warm weather.  

Sweet peas came into flower during the first week of June and are now starting to produce a lot of flowers.  I will have to cut some before the end of the week.  Not a difficult job - in fact quite pleasant. 

Still a lot of jobs to do but on top of it at the moment.   

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