The curse of my allotment

13 Jan

Mid Jan and it’s time to sit down to review how my allotment has performed over the last twelve months and start planning for the next season.

And yet again I’m having to admit to myself that I’m disappointed – my allotment rarely lives up to my high expectations. Expectations built on glossy magazine articles, weekly newspaper columns and even some lovely posts here on the blogosphere !

I’ve just never found the whole vegetable growing thing easy. Flowers I can do but veg no. Every year I say to myself that this will be the year when I spend much more time on my allotment, I will nurture the soil, I will succession sow, I will water more frequently etc etc. but it just never happens – there’s simply too much going on elsewhere.

Last years performance was mixed as usual – great raspberries, pounds of blackberries, no gooseberries, good lettuce, mediocre onions, amazing cherry tomatoes ( that all succumbed to blight within a week !!!) , so-so beans, plentiful artichokes, miserable courgettes……. Do I need to go on ?

So here I am saying this year will be better. I will do all the aforementioned things – more time, more manure, more water etc etc and if all the stars are aligned and the moon is in the right phase and we have a warm wet summer I just may pull it off this year !

So the next task is ordering seeds – this is an element of the equation that I think I have got pretty sorted – see my post this time last year to see my decision making process.

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I think I’ll be ordering pretty much the same as last year

  • Spring onion ‘Holland Blood Red’ – red spring onions
  • Broad Bean ‘Superaguadulce’ – good for an early sowing, in fact must sow mine soon!
  • French Bean ‘Blue Lake Climbing’ – very prolific
  • French bean ‘Blauhilde’ – purple bean
  • Dwarf Bean – Rocquencourt’ – brigh yellow pods
  • Dwarf Bean ‘Purple Tepee’ – purple bean
  • Runner bean ‘Painted Lady’ !
  • Beetroot ‘Bolthardy’ – the default variety
  • Beetroot ‘Chioggia’ – beautiful stripey pink and white variety
  • Carrot ‘Purple Haze’ – purple and orange roots
  • Courgette ‘Romanesco’ – ridged fruit
  • Lettuce ‘ Merveille de Quatre Saisons’ – crumpled red and green leaves
  • Lettuce ‘Black Seeded Simpson’ – good crunchy green
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    I’ll be turning my propogator on shortly and getting the first of my succession sowing under way.

    I’ve also picked up some interesting flower seeds over the year and will be giving them a go, either for cutting or in the garden at home.

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    Tune back in in twelve months time to see if I’ve finally cracked this vegetable growing business !

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