Friday, 15 November 2013

The allotment in November

I made it down to the allotment on Wednesday for the first time in probably three weeks.  I like this time of year - nothing gets too out of hand while I'm away.

It was pretty cold, and over the river there was a tube of mist.  This happens quite a lot, and I love to see it.  It's just below the horizon in the photo.  You can see the park as well, where we spend many a happy hour climbing, swinging and playing football.  And paddling in the summer in the big paddling pool.


The plots are looking very autumnal now.  Still some greenness and a few flowers, but it's all slowing down and waiting to be tidied.


On my way to the far corner where our plot is, I saw plenty of things I'd like to try and grow next year.  Dahlias, definitely, and maybe some chard and leeks.



The last time I was here I planted garlic and onions.  You can just see the new shoots at the front of the picture.  I love how they germinate in these short dark months, and sit there through the winter waiting to grow away in spring.


I spent some time on the asparagus bed.  Firstly cutting down all the fronds, and then weeding, and finally mulching with some leaf mold I was lucky enough to get from the boys' school last year.  It's not fully broken down in twelve months, but I'm hoping the worms will pull it down into the soil.  There were certainly plenty about.  I struggle to weed the asparagus because I don't want to damage the crowns.  It looks okay at the moment but no doubt there will plenty of weeds reappearing in spring.  I wanted to make sure I added something to the soil because asparagus needs so little doing to it it's easy to overlook.



Time for a little tea break after that.  A nice cup of redbush tea.  I didn't want to wait for it to cool down, and then I got mud in the cup so I didn't drink most of it.  I don't have the luxury of time to sit about and drink tea when I manage to get a little while at the plot.  Some people, with immaculate plots, I only ever see sitting around with mugs.  It's a bit of a mystery how any work ever gets done.  There must be a little magic at work I think.  Pixies maybe.


I pulled out the cosmos and trimmed the sedum and lavender, and picked the last four roses.  No more until next summer.  They were a bit battered, but they're in a glass on the mantelpiece and they still look lovely.  I don't know what variety it is, but it's been flowering since June.


The blackcurrants are looking a bit tidier now.  At the front of the picture is the path that marks the end of my plot.  In the summer the blackcurrants had fallen completely over the path and onto the neighbouring plot.  I've cut out masses of wood, although it doesn't look like it.  This picture shows the whole plot, from the sign down to the green shed.


From top to bottom, there are blackcurrants, raspberries, gooseberries, a plum tree and japanese wineberry, strawberries (to be removed), a bed for vegetables etc., the asparagus, another two beds each about 3m square and then the area around the shed.  Behind the shed it's all a bit overgrown, but there was rhubarb back there earlier in the year.  Then there's a path and the hedgerow with the most enormous blackberries and beyond that the stream.  Our own little piece of land, that still gives me a thrill every time I visit.  This is the view from the other side of the fruit bit.


At the front is a little chilli plant I bought from Aldi back in early July.  They don't ever water their plants, and so it was really dehydrated and reduced in price.  But it recovered beautifully and has given me far more chillies than I know what to do with.  Not bad for 99p.  If I grow chillies again I'll definitely do it this way. I tried growing some in pots, but this one was far happier in the soil.


So there we have it.  November at the plot.  I don't have any more crops to harvest.  Next year I'll try and have some winter things to pick.  This year I'll just be happy to get everything tidied away.  There's still lots to do, but the pressure is off now.  So long as it's done by spring, all will be well.

33 comments:

  1. I really love the idea of having an allotment. I really wish this idea would catch on over here, especially in cities. Arid cities, like the one I live in, would be an idea place because they could probably save a lot of water if people did their gardening in one place as opposed to spread out all over the city in their own yards. I'm impressed with the number of different things you have planted and I hope you have lots to harvest next year.

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    1. It would be lovely if allotments took off over there, they are such enjoyable places to be. You never know who will be there, and it's a lovely little community of really nice people.

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  2. Reminds me of when we used to have an allotment some years back. I don't think I'd get much done with such lovely views all around as you have there though. Loved the pic of the flask slightly tilted and the cup and could just imagine standing there drinking a cuppa admiring the views.

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    1. Thanks, it is nice to stop sometimes and just enjoy being there.

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  3. We don't have time for coffee breaks either. Lots to get done before it is too dark to work or before the weather gets too wet and miserable.

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    1. Yes, I'm struggling to find dry enough days to go at the moment.

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  4. We had one plotter who pulled his winter onions up in early spring on the grounds they hadn't grown over winter.

    Are they young globe artichokes you're growing behind your onions?

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    1. Oh dear, poor chap. I hope he at least had them in a little salad! They are indeed globe artichokes. I'm a bit scared of them, I've never prepared them myself and it all seems a bit mysterious. Love the nice ones in jars of oil though. A bit beyond my budget at the moment, so we shall see if I can make my own.

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  5. Your allotment space is just so romantic for me. I've always wanted one but I'm NPR do sure I will actually be that good at it. Rooibos, great taste!! Your chilli is looking amazing!! It's such a beautiful place, you must love spending time there, I know I would!! Enjoy your weekend xoxo

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    1. It is a lovely place, but it's also rather time consuming! I do enjoy being there though.

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  6. You've been busy, and it's all looking good as we wind down for winter.
    A most enjoyable plot post, with terrific photos. Flighty xx

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    1. Thanks Flighty, still lots to do though. But isn't there always?!

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  7. It is looking good. It would certainly be inspiring walking past some of those plots, and a little intimidating too!

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    1. Definitely intimidating. I have to remind myself that I'm only trying to grow a little food for us. While I would love to have an amazing plot, it's just not practical at the moment. So I'm just happy to avoid getting a stiff letter from The Lady With The Clipboard and to have a bit of a harvest from time to time.

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  8. I shall grow my Chillis in the ground next year. They do dry out so quickly in pots. As you know I covet an allotment, but for now I shall enjoy yours!

    Leanne xx

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    1. I've started growing my tomatoes in the ground as well, and I do think they prefer it. I hope you do get an allotment one day, I'm sure you'd love it, and Olly definitely would.

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  9. The garden is looking fantastic.
    Hugs to you,
    Meredith

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  10. Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment so I know you had been by.
    Lovely to meet new (to me) bloggers.
    Looks like you live in a really beautiful place, I love the photos of your autumnal walk, so many stunning colours. I love a good kick up in autumn leaves!
    Really like the muted colours of your bag.
    Lisa x

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    1. I really enjoyed visiting your blog, and so happy that you've visited here too. Thank you for your kind comments.

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  11. Everything is wound down at my plot too, I've only got parsnips to harvest. The chilli plant looks fantastic, you've nurtured it right back to health and it's paying you back handsomely.

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    1. It is, I do love to rescue sad plants. There are some unwatered hanging baskets that I've got my eye on at the moment, they're very floppy, I'm sure they'll be dropping into my price bracket any day now...

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  12. What a wonderful colourful blog! I'll be back to read more... checked out your previous post on bread, too. Wow, you are one busy person!

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    1. Thank you Glo, and thanks for visiting.

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  13. We've reached that point in the year as well - lots of tidying up to do, but theres something quite satisfying about seeing everything cleared back and ready to start again isn't there.

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  14. I have discovered you blog some weeks ago and it is a pleasure to spend some time here. I don't have an allotment, but I have tried out some veggies and different herbs in container last summer. I was able to be successful with a couple of them, which makes me now plan some more for next Spring/Summer. Do you have to trim lavender? You do a wonderful job here!

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  15. That chili plant looks amazing! I love seeing how things are still growing at even this time of year. It's amazing how resilient plants are to withstand the colder months and them blossom again come spring. Pure magic. Maybe there are pixies around:) Your plot looks wonderful, and it's nice you had time to spend there. I would love to take a stroll there:)

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  16. I enjoyed your visit to the allotment. it reminded me of the one we had. There is nothing like having a cup of tea there and taking time to appreciate your hard work.
    Sarah x

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  17. Thank you for sharing your visit to your allotment with us. It's as fascinating to me now in November as it was in the summer. Those dahlias are pretty spectacular. How lovely to still see all that colour. x

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  18. Wow, that's an amazing chilli! Your plots look lovely and great setting too.

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  19. Superb visit! What an amazing little chilli plant - put a big happy sunny smile on my face. Your allotments are so neat and loved and smaller compared to ours I love them! xx

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  20. Great post: get a real sense of your allotments, the work and your own enthusiasm from this post with the combination of words and wonderful photos. Thanks.

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