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#1 Old 04-11-2018, 03:13 AM
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Allotment news

Hi! Haven't been around for a while but would like to chat to other allotmenteers. What are you growing? What's your weather like? Beastie probs etc.?
This is our 4th year and we are so far behind it doesn't bear thinking about. East coast of Scotland has been taking a beating with wind and snow. Thankfully the last of the snow has cleared but the ground is still pretty waterlogged. We made a start to digging in the manure on Monday (try shovelling **** in the snow by the way) with a view to getting early potatoes in today.
Sods law declares that that went tits up. Raining overnight and thick mist this morning put the kibosh on that. Hopefully will be dry enough to give it a go after tea.
Our house is full of seed trays with little ones waiting to get their roots into their permanent home - tomato, pepper, chilli, basil etc.
On the bright side, have pruned the apple and bay, prepared beds for carrots and as they say - onwards and upwards.
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#2 Old 04-11-2018, 01:07 PM
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Spring is late here in northeastern United States, also. I took cuttings of two tomato plants last fall- a cherry tomato and a volunteer that just sprouted in my garden, but I recognized it was a tomato. Since it sprouted on its own with no extra care inside, it was still small by the time cold weather was coming, so I dug it up, potted it, and took it inside. In my experience, cherry tomatoes grow like weeds, but this grew slowly so I think it was from a regular tomato seed. It'll be interesting to see what it produces.

I also was given 3 jalapeno pepper plants 3 years ago, and I potted them instead of planting them outside. I keep them indoors over the cold months also; they're not very big, and they look ornamental when the peppers ripen and turn bright red.

I started some kale indoors, but the seed was kind of old and I didn't get good germination; I'm trying to nurse them along. I'm starting some large (African) marigolds, plum tomatoes, okra and romaine lettuce from seed. But okra is funny with me: some years it does great, and other years it only grows a foot high. The 3 garlic cloves I planted last fall all came up- YAY!

One of the potatoes I bought at a store sprouted an eye, so I planted it in a pot- but I don't think it's going to do anything. A few years ago, a peach tree sprouted from a pit I had thrown out; I transplanted it and it's given me a few peaches the past 2 years (except one year we had a late frost that killed all the blossoms). I have peppermint and lovage growing in my yard, too; I hope the lovage is still alive- this year it looks like the tops of the overwintering roots are above the ground- I don't know if that's normal, but at least one of them appears to have a growing sprout or bud. I divided the lovage last spring and it's in 2 different spots now. But maybe I didn't replant it deep enough.

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#3 Old 04-13-2018, 08:45 AM
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Oh well! Another cold cold day with rain and mist but, and this is a big but, the forecast looks better for this weekend and the coming week so should get the early potatoes in.

Onions need to go in soon

Then dig and prepare the next couple of beds for salad stuff, lettuce, beetroot spring onion etc. I like to plant these at 2 weekly intervals to ensure a crop right through the summer

It's difficult to talk about what needs to be done when it's stuff that actually should already be done but, ever the optimist, I still see it all coming together.

There is joy and beauty in everything around us, just take time to see it!

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#4 Old 04-14-2018, 06:14 AM
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Oh yes! Early potatoes, Charlotte and Pentland Javelin, planted. onion bed prepared and new carrot containers ready to rock. If weather holds up will get onions in tomorrow.

There is joy and beauty in everything around us, just take time to see it!

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#5 Old 04-15-2018, 05:56 AM
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Hahaha! The sun has got its hat on and I have been working in my vest. Still pretty cold in the shade but, yeah, happy as a pig in sh*t.

Onion and shallots in and bed prepared for maincrop potatoes. Thoughts of bringing chilli, tomato and pepper down this week sometime. A bit worried about transplanting them into their permanent pots just yet, we'll see!

Wood collected to make frames for beans and peas

Flag hoisted - well actually it's a bit of plastic on a pole but it keeps the pigeons away from the onions - Anthem duly sung!

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#6 Old 04-17-2018, 04:28 AM
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Tom, you have the same attitude as us to growing. We save seeds, we take cuttings when out and about, we are of the opinion that with a wee bit of luck, time and patience you can get anything to grow as long as its suitable to your climate. This type of gardening is the most economic and ecologically sound even though it is a bit hit and miss at times. Obviously some seeds have to be bought but we try to keep this to a minimum. We are also quite happy to have a house full of seed trays waiting for the weather to change to get them down to the allotment.

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#7 Old 04-24-2018, 06:06 AM
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Maincrop potatoes in and the first lot of salad stuff - spring onion, radish, beetroot and rocket seeds planted. Unfortunately it is a bit like winter again so the tomatoes, chillis and peppers will not be getting planted up for a move down to the allotment just yet. Rhubarb is doing fine and I did intent to bring some home the other day but, well as per usual, it slipped my mind till I was already on my way home. I still have one tub of cooked apples left from the winter stores so it's not such a disaster! Pudding is an every day thing in this house so it looks like it will be apple sponge or pie on the menu yet again

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#8 Old 04-25-2018, 01:46 AM
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Wow you have all been busy, I'll have to up my allotment game!

I am really lucky to have my allotment a 30 second walk from my back garden, but have only managed to get my onions in, potatoes still chitting.

I made a few rookie errors back in the last couple of years so have transplanted my raspberry canes (I planted them all together at first, didn't realise they needed to be seperated!) and my rainbow chard miraculously survived the harsh winter so have moved them onto a bigger bed too.

It was so lovely to have that little blast of sunshine last week, can't wait for those long warm evenings where you lose track of time down at the allotment.
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#9 Old 04-26-2018, 01:29 AM
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We have so few of those here so have to make the most of any dry weather. The wind is a big factor here as well (east coast of Scotland) so we have many days where it is certainly not a pleasure to be out gardening!

Allotment gardening is in general a try it and see affair and even as experienced gardeners, on taking on the allotment 3 years ago, have been learning by our mistakes

Waiting on a weather window to move the frame for the peas and to build another for the broad beans.

Looking forward to you keeping us up to date with your progress Chrissie!

I know that this is a vegetarian forum but I really thought that more people would be home growers.

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#10 Old 04-26-2018, 07:34 AM
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Ah I can imagine your weather is slightly more fierce than where I am on the outskirts of London..even more credit to you to get out there and plant your veggies out. I must say the allotment receives far more attention from me when the sun is shining..

Glad to hear the trial and error approach is used even by more experienced gardeners. I've only recently got to the stage where I have stopped looking at other peoples plots going "when will mine look that good?" haha! This is my fourth year but interest (and time constraints) have been up and down, although am very enthusiastic at the moment so fingers crossed some of my seeds start playing ball and germinating..

Interesting that there aren't more home-growers here, perhaps we can start a new trend. I'm hoping to add in some pictures shortly as I have a rhubarb pie on the go so perhaps the seasonal food can tempt people to grow their own!

Let me know how the planting goes, my peas didn't get very far last year so eager to see how others have got them going!!
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#11 Old 04-27-2018, 06:01 AM
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Today leeks brought down from house and put into cloche for hardening off. (poor wee beggars it's not a good day for a first venture out into the real world)

Frames built for peas and beans

Brought the first of the rhubarb home.

Used the last of my stored apples for crumble yesterday

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#12 Old 05-02-2018, 04:27 AM
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Oh well I knew it was too good to last! Frost in the morning past few days, now it is raining!

Tomatoes and chillis really need potting on but they will have to wait

There is joy and beauty in everything around us, just take time to see it!

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#13 Old 05-02-2018, 08:03 AM
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Oh no you still have frost! Fingers x'd that will be the last of it.

I've got sunshine & showers, which isn' t too big of a deal as it's helping water in my raspberry canes (they've all survived the move).

Re-planted a load of rainbow chard that outgrew it's pot and somehow survived the frosts over winter without any cloche.

Have also bought some peanut seeds! Apparently they grow in our climate, will be infinitely impressed if I can pull them off.

Here to share my attempt at being a little bit more healthy, via being good to myself and the planet. Easily led astray, but ultimately trying to lead the good life! Veggie for 8+ years


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#14 Old 05-02-2018, 09:32 AM
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You go girl!

Just had a quick look at your web page. I too am a thrift shop queen. It's amazing what you can put together if you have a "good eye" and know exactly what suits you. Or in my case can be adjusted to suit. Anything up to 2 sizes bigger can normally be made to fit. It helps that I don't give a s**t if stuff is a bit big

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#15 Old 05-05-2018, 11:53 AM
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Somebody threw the switch from "winter" to "summer", and my garlic and lovage have put on a growth spurt. The kale plant from last year survived also (our winters can be brutal, but kale is tough- it's sometimes perennial in my area, not just biennial. If all my kale seeds are no longer viable, I'll harvest the ones from this plant- I picked some of the leaves last growing season but left a few, so it will probably bloom.)

Weather is still touch-and-go here- yesterday was warm but I'm not planting out the tomatoes just yet.

Peasant (1963-1972) and Fluffy (1970s?-1982- I think of you as 'Ambrose' now)- Your spirits outshone some humans I have known. Be happy forever.
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#16 Old 05-06-2018, 01:18 AM
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Better forecast for today, so tomato and chili seedlings going to allotment. We still have to grow them inside Tom because our growing season is pretty short, plus we do not have many sunny days. They grow pretty successfully in a shed that has one side totally glass and the heat builds up pretty nicely in there.

Second lot of salad veg seeds going in soon. I like to plant at 2 weekly intervals to ensure crop right through until autumn. I don't know why I said that because apart from the turning and falling leaves we seem to go temperature wise from warmish to winter at the drop of a hat.

I think though that understanding the vagaries of the weather goes a long way to being a better grower!

Enjoy your day people!

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#17 Old 05-11-2018, 06:55 AM
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Ah thanks for taking a look at my site Etherea! How great that you are able to alter your clothes, a skill I never learnt. So many times I see nice things that aren't my size and I have to reluctantly leave them behind, but I don't suppose you will have that problem. I'm the same though with buying things a little too big, always good to have some expansion room

Off to water my onions now. Hope the birds haven't had a go at them..

Happy Friday everyone x

Here to share my attempt at being a little bit more healthy, via being good to myself and the planet. Easily led astray, but ultimately trying to lead the good life! Veggie for 8+ years


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#18 Old 05-11-2018, 08:24 AM
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Weeding between onions today and fruit tree plot having its first weeding (nearly finished) but it was awfully cold. Bearing in mind that we are well into May I am still wearing a hoodie and winter parka on top of my normal gardening clothes. Last week I had one day with just a t-shirt! Don't worry I have committed it to memory

Tomato and chillis are doing well though and the strawberries are starting to flower.

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#19 Old 05-20-2018, 07:41 AM
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Peas and beans transplanted to growing frames!
Beetroot, swiss yard and iceberg lettuce coming through
Potatoes visible
Nearly totally on track but OMG - the weeds arghhhhh!
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#20 Old 05-31-2018, 05:05 AM
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After a few days of reasonably good weather we are starting to see some real growth at last!

It is now a pleasure to go down to the allotment and be able to work in a t-shirt rather than parka and scarf.

Being Scotland it may not last but ever the optimist I am not thinking about anything other than a successful season!

There is joy and beauty in everything around us, just take time to see it!

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#21 Old 06-26-2018, 01:19 PM
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Well, a huge crop of strawberries, first new potatoes dug up and eaten today, little gem lettuce ready and everything is on track. We have had a reasonable spell of good weather and are delighted with the progress!
Having had to be away from home on and off for the last three weeks it's been difficult keeping up with the weeding but, yeah, we're on it now. Our adjacent plot holder is quite happy to water the tomatoes. chillis etc. but asking him to weed is probably a step too far I think!

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#22 Old 06-27-2018, 04:29 PM
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My kale plant has lots of seed pods on it! My garlic is really tall and has scapes. Since I last posted in this thread, a co-worker gave me a clump of chives. I planted them in my garden and they're doing well.

Peasant (1963-1972) and Fluffy (1970s?-1982- I think of you as 'Ambrose' now)- Your spirits outshone some humans I have known. Be happy forever.
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#23 Old 06-28-2018, 12:17 AM
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I have chives in my herb garden and they always do well. The beauty is that if they go to flower earlier than expected, it doesn't really matter because the flowers are good in salads etc.

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#24 Old 07-07-2018, 07:36 AM
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@etherea Yep- I tried a flower or two and they had a nice oniony flavor- a bit more intense than the leaves, I think. I didn't cut off the flowers, as they recommend, but I don't think that will harm the plants- I'll just get fewer leaves to pick. I think I'll collect the seeds from the flowers and start yet another clump of chives.

Peasant (1963-1972) and Fluffy (1970s?-1982- I think of you as 'Ambrose' now)- Your spirits outshone some humans I have known. Be happy forever.
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#25 Old 07-08-2018, 02:54 AM
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Shallots ready!

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#26 Old 07-08-2018, 01:08 PM
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Swiss chard, spring onion, iceberg lettuce,shallots and courgette all picked today!

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#27 Old 07-11-2018, 02:51 PM
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I'll be planting some romaine lettuce for the fall soon, and maybe some mustard greens too.

Peasant (1963-1972) and Fluffy (1970s?-1982- I think of you as 'Ambrose' now)- Your spirits outshone some humans I have known. Be happy forever.
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#28 Old 07-12-2018, 07:59 AM
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Well, after all the moaning I did previously about the weather, we have had a really dry, warm spell and are having to water every evening once the sun goes down. I never thought I would here myself saying it but.................. go on, rain! go on, I dare you!

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#29 Old 07-26-2018, 03:45 AM
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I have an absolute mountain of beetroot so am trying a traditional recipe for red velvet cake made with beetroot not awful red food colouring. If it turns out as well as my courgette and cheddar tea bread I will be well pleased!

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#30 Old 08-01-2018, 04:10 PM
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Early last year, I divided my lovage plant and planted one of the 2 divisions in a different area of the garden. The leaves have a great celery scent and flavor... but I think the original plant might be dying. All the leaves dried up early this summer and the root hasn't started putting out new leaves.

I had some mustard green seeds that were kind of old, and planted them thickly in starter pots filled with my own garden soil about 2 weeks ago, figuring I wouldn't have good germination. Welll.. I had EXCELLENT germination, and last evening, I spent some time on my front steps, digging out the little plants and planting them separately in other pots. When I got home after work today, they seemed to be doing well, although they'll probably need to grow their roots a bit. The kale seedlings (grown from seeds produced by my kale plant I mentioned above) are growing really fast! I don't think I'll have room to plant the romaine lettuce I was planning... if not, maybe next spring.

Peasant (1963-1972) and Fluffy (1970s?-1982- I think of you as 'Ambrose' now)- Your spirits outshone some humans I have known. Be happy forever.

Last edited by Tom; 08-01-2018 at 04:14 PM.
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