Thursday, 25 April 2013

Finished the sieve double digging.

I have finally finished the sieve double digging for this year.  The allotment secretary asked if I wanted the other half to the new allotment.  It is very untidy with lots of hedge bindweed and horse tail.  However, I said yes.  Fool that I am.  I will cover the ground with the old carpets that I have found and the tarpaulins until I have time to sieve double dig this one too.  I will not do much digging during the summer but it could be a project for the winter.  I don't have to pay for it this year and it would not be cost effective anyway because I could not plant anything on it this year.

There is a small apple tree on this half of the allotment which has been pushed over by a pile of compost.  I am not sure whether it can be straightened or whether straightening it is a good idea.  I am going to double dig up to it and clear the ground around it to have a look and see what I can do.

The banks of soil next to the hedge have been sieved and I have started to rake the soil over the bottom half of the allotment.  I will finish that tomorrow.  I have buried three carpets alongside the hedge to keep the bindweed where it should be - in the hedge.  I have made a pathway along the hedge to where the shed will be moved to.

Tomorrow, after I have raked all the piles of sieved soil over the allotment, I will start to plant shallots, garlic and onions.  I know that it is very late to be planting these but they have been planted  on the old allotment during March and they are doing fine. I want to see how big I can grow the alliums on the old allotment so they are spaced about a foot apart.  It does not give you very many  but they are potentially very big.  The alliums that were left over will give me a succession of alliums later in the year. They will be planted closer together to give a more usual size.

I need to put up the runner bean canes on the new allotment and that will be done after planting alliums.  I will put them across next to the main track for a little privacy during the summer.  I am debating whether to put some climbing peas next to the hedge path.  I am not too sure whether they would survive slugs and snails living in the hedge.

The area next to the hedge path is for red, white and black currants.  I have some red and a lot of black currant cuttings but will have to buy some white currants.  I will have to transplant some more of the strawberries because  they are in the wrong place.  I will put them with the others under the Victoria plum.

I have a pot of teasel seedlings which I will plant under one of the apple trees.  They have a pleasant enough flower and the finches like to eat the seeds.

Talking about finches, I think that the gold and green finches are having all the blossom off the Victoria Plum. I will go and get some bird seed tomorrow in an effort to keep them off the fruit blossom.

I have watered all the seedlings and seeds that I planted last week with dilute comfrey liquid.  I only put a couple of table spoon fulls into a watering can of water but it seems to have a very beneficial effect on all the plants.

Dug over some more of the brassica bed and will plant some kohl rabbi, swede and turnip when I go down there next.

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