Friday, 26 October 2012

Must do before November...

Well, the last time I made a blog post I am sure the leaves on the trees were green if not with a slight tinge of yellow. Since then the glorious autumnal colour show has really got off with a bang. Red, Orange, Purple are just beautiful colours to see on the side of the road, back garden or at a public park. It makes a nice change from the mass quantity of green we have seen over the last 7 months.

With the end of Autumn and beginnning of winter does come a tinge of sadness, the first frost has been and gone and it is a timely reminder that the clocks go back on Sunday morning. I like to pop up to the allotment when I can after work, but I know that from next week it will be very dark at 5pm and I won't have a chance of getting up there. The next 'day at the allotment' will probably be in February. Only sparing visits will take place from next week until then. However, the allotment isn't being completly put to bed. Some things continue to grow like Purple Sprouting, Leeks, Parsnips and lettuce. Broad Beans can be sown from next week. So some joy still does exist.

We have just got back from our annual trip to Disneyland Paris and that really enforces the message that this time next week it will be November and Halloween will have been and gone. There were a few things I really want to get done on Friday at the allotment which didn't take too long which included tidying the shed. The last thing I want to do is go to the allotment on February 16th to find that the shed is a mess and I can't find the right sized seed tray to make my sowings. Other things to do in the next week or so include collecting leafs for leaf mould and making christmas cakes.

I also raked three barrow loads of compost in to the old bean bed which is going to be next years' brassica bed.

The frost had killed off all the bean and squash plant a few weeks ago, so it was also time to harvest the dried runner bean shells so that I could save some seed for next year. Runner beans in a small little bag sealed with a ribbon make a wonderful gift for those family members who have birthday's early in the year. There were plenty of beans left so we have a good stash of seed now..

We also picked up a couple of butternuts I had missed before when the foliage was still quite big, they are going to go on the window ledge to ripen up. The leaves are all curled up and black now so they were easy to spot. We also harvested the first 'purple top milan' turnips and the last pumpkin, which is going to have a big job on it's hand to be orange enough for Wendesday.

I think that last pumpkin may end up as soup. Never mind the other 5 pumpkins in the conservatory are ripening nicely as you can see. The one in the bottom left is particularly orange...

It was also my birthday last week. I had asked for euros for our trip to Paris as well as Gardening Vouchers if they prefered so that I could buy a small polytunnel. Tomatoes and cucumbers have been a small disaster over the last few years, so I want to give them a bit of a helping hand next year. I have £65 in vouchers so that will be very helpful indeed. We're going to be changing the allotment layout again next year based on what worked well and what didn't for us this year.. More to follow soon..

I think that's all for now.

Thanks for reading..