Monday, October 3, 2011

Roll on the New Year

Okay, own up - who prayed for rain in April then?

In truth, it hasn't actualy been a wet few months (note the deliberate non-use of the word "summer" here), just cold and miserable, with a kind of low-level rain that doesn't flood anything, but just doesn't really make you want to go outside in it. When the weather was good enough to get outside, and we weren't otherwise occupied, we were only really able to try and keep the weeds down or, if we were being really adventurous, cut the grass. Not the type of stuff that the few readers that may mistakenly happen upon this blog would want to stay and read. We also had a rather busy time with the family and, to add to the list of pathetic excuses we're struggling for, the camera decided to give up the ghost again after an expensive repair last year (although, after saving up and buying an even more expensive replacement (which has terminally depleted the polytunnel fund (at least for this year)), we realised that the camera was, in fact, working fine, and the cheapie lens that we were using was actually the problem). We now have a new lens as well as a new camera (but no polytunnel).

Winterkefe Mangetout
(vigourous and rewarding (and really easy))

Mignonette Strawberry
(small but the only one to survive the slugs)

This rather makes the last few months sound rather miserable, but the year hasn't been too bad. We had a decent crop of Broad Beans, Mangetout, Onions and Strawberries (some of which are still cropping). When we finally remembered to get the salads re-sown, the Rocket, Radishes and other leaves did quite well, and the herbs have also been in good supply. The Peas and Runner Beans failed due to neglect, while the Tomatoes finally died (although they don't really have an excuse, suicidally beligerant little sods). The Raspberries are probably our greatest failure, and their story may get a post of its own if we're honest enough to own up to what happened. However, we don't want to dwell on our mistakes; after all, if a mistake is good enough, why not keep repeating it over and over again?

Right, retrospection out of the way, lets think about the New Year. Yes, we know we're only just into October, but there are chocolate santas back on the supermarket shelves and, to be honest, seeing as we're into October, most of what we'll be doing for the next three months will be for the 2012 harvest.
Spring Cabbage Pixie
(The first sowing of 2012 (apart from Asparagus and Globe Artichokes))
First up, or, technically speaking, down, are the Spring Cabbages, with some "Pixie" being sown last month into pots. These are now well on their way and should be thinking about getting planted out, with some protection, in the next couple of weeks into what will be the 2012 brassica bed (which held the onions this year - not quite the right rotation yet, but we're getting there - at least this bed is ready for them to be planted into). At the same time, we're thinking about sowing some Broad Beans for early crops (probbaly into toliet roll tubes in the greenhouse) and have "Radar" Onion sets to be planted out (or, possibly potted up - they did well with this last spring). In the unlikely event of some decent weather, we may even get back to digging - no less that two new beds are required to fit in with the 2012 planting Plan (note capitalisation - this will be the year we start our campaign for world domination: we start in our veg plot).
The veg plot
(don't be fooled - the two plots are only covered in grass clippings and are yet to be dug)
Actually, just thinking now, the rugby's on next weekend. Would anyone mind if that prayer for rain was extended for a couple of weeks?


  1. You're growing plants pretty well. Keep it up.


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