Monday, 18 June 2012

"The allotment has an afro!"

Such was the cry of my co-labourer on responding to my "Weed emergency" text which begged for assistance at the plot.  Grass frolicked, mockingly knee high, amongst the seedlings clinging onto life in the sodden soil.  Shears soon meant it was much less perky.

 The clear patch which sported spuds last year, now sports a magnificently prolific head of cleavers (aka "sticky weed" - weapon of choice in all weed slinging wars amongst our children).  It is still there in the vain hope that it may suppress anything even more insidious until it can be dealt with.

Adopted a policy of clear and plant as I tackled the designated area for this season's sweet corn.  That's the problem with allotments - it's no good clearing areas one week unless you can get the ground into cultivation pretty rapidly.  It just becomes a vicious circle of weeding for no reward otherwise.

Sadly,  things are sparse so far on the harvesting front - a few rows of parsnips are through, and the beetroot, turnips and perpetual spinach are hanging in there against the pigeon onslaughts. Other feeble beginnings include: one solitary French bean (so it seems the pot sown ones have won the contest against their direct sown opponents to date), a few slug munched semi-ripe strawberries, and the beginnings of red currants.

More successful are the gooseberries which seem to have avoided sawfly attack this year - but I've read that denuding of bushes by these evil beasties usually occurs the first year after planting with recovery thereafter.  Seems to be true on the present evidence.

Must sit down with my seeds and try to get the last vestiges of this year's planting done before the end of the month - otherwise will not see much benefit from our labours.

1 comment:

  1. Raspberries about 12 so far and a hanfull of redcurrants only two strawberries. Cucumbers are still only three leaves high and the rain, living at the bottom of a hill and clay soil means theres alot of rotting seedlings. But the lawn looks nice, constant mowing though. Cleared the straggly plants all leggy just sticking with the ones that dont mind the soaking conditions. Weeds are loving the conditions. And the frogs and tadpoles dont care either way.