It has been a strange spring. It felt like it had started in February but then March brought several falls of snow which is unusual on the south west coast of the UK. However, this week we have better news: some sunshine!
Well, maybe not tomorrow but the rest of the week looks good. So what have we been harvesting?
First, the rhubarb. It is enormous probably due to all the rain we have had. And then there are the radishes. These grew whilst we were away and are now ready to eat. Delicious.
The sprouting broccoli, White Eye, has been fantastic. It stays together and if cut regularly is as good to eat as asparagus when dipped in a little bit of mayo. I only grew 2 of these plants this year but I think 6 would be better next year. The rhubarb we ate in a crumble, one of our favourite puddings.
Things are starting to grow on the allotment and I am starting to plant some of the seedlings outside albeit with a fleece covering. So, a little trip around the plot.
In the autumn, I mulch with compost, both homemade and bought and manure if I have any. This means that when it is time for planting, I can just plant straight away – after removing a few weeds that have grown over winter. Today, I planted out more Douce Provence peas in a ring of netting with some fleece outside the mesh.
I have seen peas grown like this at Rosemoor , the RHS garden in North Devon. I am not quite sure why they grow them like this and picking might not be too easy. What if they all collapse and grow together in the middle of the mesh? I will find out.
The first and second photos show the difference between broad beans planted in the polytunnel and outside, the indoor ones being much bigger and with flowers that are open and ready for bees. Under the fleece is beetroot and onions. I will leave the fleece on for the next couple of weeks, taking it off during the day when it is warm. As well as keeping the plants a little more protected from the weather, it also keeps the slugs off for a little longer.
The Wildlife allotment is next to one of mine so I do get many visiting plants. This year the forget-me-nots and primroses are prolific and I have left some to flower. They do brighten the plot up at this time of year.
I am a member of the Undug – no dig Facebook group, a very friendly and useful group to belong to. There does seem to be a myth that no-dig means no weeds for some of the newer members. Unfortunately it doesn’t. It is just like any other method of gardening. Get the weeds young before they seed and you will reduce them over time. Let them get away and they will!
I ran out of time tonight to get all of these out but I will be back early tomorrow morning to remove them. They are just starting to flower and before I know it, they will have gone to seed.
My thanks to Dave at Our Happy Acres for hosting the Harvest Monday posts. It is a really good idea. I love to see the way other people grow their veg and some of the more unusual veg (to me) that people grow.
What are you harvesting this week?