Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Plums and Right Angles

Last night was a warm summer evening and I managed to weasel out of work a little early, so went up to the plot to potter. Marked out two new beds; realised that I'm crap at right angles; worked out that if I continue marking out as I'm doing so far, I'm going to end up cultivating someone else's backyard. So might have to rethink that one. Very satisfying while not actually involving any work.

Watered Keith's leeklings, and my amazing shady bed, where funnily enough nothing has germinated. Strange. Stopped to have a chat to Keith, who came over later with two more huge cucumbers and a bag of tomatoes; it's amazing how much produce I'm coming home with given that I've only had the plot ten days! Ate all the plums off my tree. Shouldn't have left them so long as they were gloriously sweet but most of them had fallen off. Will have to learn how to prune in time for next year. However, Keith spotted a plum tree in next door's (uncultivated) allotment, and suddenly I had the urge to clear brambles. Got a path to the plum tree - loads of fruit, though not quite ripe - then realised I'd nearly cleared the lot. I reckon just a couple more days with the secateurs and I'll have a plot, albeit one with foot high bramble stalks lurking over a third of it.

This morning I rang Dobies about my seed potatoes which they claimed no knowledge of. Getting a bit narky after I put the phone down until I had one of those cold moments... rang Fothergills. They're sending them out today. Oop. Ordered brassicas from Dobies as a sort of penance. Don't I feel a twerp.

So now I've got 50 brassica plants coming as well as the seed potatoes, and I had planned to get some onion and garlic sets in as well as the spring onions and some peas. Suddenly I'm having to think about crop rotation and stuff, and I haven't even got any beds dug. This could be a fun weekend. I'll go up tonight and make myself dig at least one bed for the brassicas and mark out one for the spuds (thought I might get all artistic and triangular, á la my tiny plot). Then if I have any time left (and energy) I'll have a go at some more of the brambles.

I'm getting there. At least I would be if I could stop ordering bloody seeds. Have asked about on allotments4all if anyone knows the best place to get bulbs, for planting under the apple tree (and probably in the amazing shady bed when I eventually give that up as a bad job). So that's something else to occupy the long autumn days when I'm trying to look after what I've already done as well as digging over 250 sq m of plot. Still, as long as I'm not bored...

Still don't know what redcurrant jelly is.


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