Monday, 6 July 2009

A whinge and a pictorial tour.

I said I would post photo's of the allotment and here are the ones I took today. It was raining here most of the day so when we got a dry half hour we went up to take some rubbish to the dump and I took these. Everything has grown so tall, that's good I know but it does look rather full.
And now for the whinge. I am surrounded on three sides, left, right and behind my plot with uncultivated plots all of them have weeds with seed heads just waiting to pop all over my plot. I am so fed up with it! i phoned the council 3 weeks ago about the problem and nothing has happened. So I phoned again today, and have been promised that in the next 3 days they will come and strim all three plots. The one on the left is supposedly tenanted (not cultivated, so throw them off I say !!) the one behind has been given up ! so why hasn't it been given to someone on the 148 strong waiting list ???? and the one to the right apparently has been just taken, so hopefully it will be someone who will get on with cultivating it, although rumour has it that person is just going to keep chicken's. as long as the weeds are gone I don't care what they keep.
The photo below is what I have to look at all around me. WHINGE over, what are your views on the red tape on allotments and waiting lists in your area ??
I'm glad I got that off my chest, and I hope you like the pictorial view of my 'allotment heaven' (with weeds !!)

Views around the greenhouse

Tasty Yellow courgettes
Round Italian courgettes, wonderful roasted with garlic and herbs.

The first chillies
Aubergine in flower at last!

The first cucumber, it's still very small.

The sweetcorn is so tall now.

Cabbages, 'wheelers imperial'

Squashes and pumpkins in the middle, onions left, raspberries right

view looking down from the shed, everything has grown so big.

The sunflower hedge., look at those high weeds on the empty plot at the back ! oh sorry, I said whinge over didn't I ?
close up of the sunflower, they are mixed shades of rust,bronze and dark reds.

Runner beans, can you see the high weeds on the empty plot behind mine? SORRY !

Can you see the weeds on the plot next to me(left) ? supposed to be tenanted but not cultivated oh no! here I go again !!

Flower bed behind the peas and broad beans.


UKBob said...

I think your allotment looks really great. I'm wondering what the plastic container is for half buried under the courgettes? Shame about the weeds around you, hope they clear them up soon. The chicken farmer might be okay, you could swap them a gabbage or something for some fresh eggs! Bob

Maureen said...

Hi BOB, thanks for the comment and for stopping by. The plastic container is a bottle with the bottom cut off and the neck pushed into the base of the courgettes (some people do it with squashes as well) that enables the water and feed to go direct to the roots of the plant. Good idea about the egg swap.

Anna said...

Your lottie looks most productive, attractive and immaculate Maureen. Puts mine to shame ! I totally understand your frustration over the uncultivated plots. I am on a corner plot but the one and only neighbouring plot had been uncultivated since autumn. The bondary fence is also collapsing - the upkeep of which rests with that plot tenant. The council have strimmed once but the weeds are growing again. I have mentioned the fence to the council inspector who advised me that somebody should be taking the plot over soon. I wait with bated breath :)
P.S. What's the secret with sunflowers ? Slugs usually munch mine. This year however I have managed to get some decent sized plants but the leaves are curled up and distorted.
Yours look great !

Maureen said...

Hi ANNA, thanks for the comments. The plot is very productive, the flowers make it attractive but it's not always immaculate, honest! I have to weed little and often, I couldn't cope with a full on weeding session.
I hope you get your neighbouring plot sorted out, thankfully all the fences are the councils responsibility on our site, not that they are that great!
I don't have a secret as such with the sunflowers, other than I never sow into the ground. I grow them in individual pots and wait until they are strong before planting them out. I always stake them from early on as well, this windy weather has had one down but it was to near the path anyway, and I was always cutting bits off, so the wind did me a favour really.
oh! almost forgot I also feed them with my homemade VERY STINKY comfrey tea, amazing stuff if you can stand the smell. If you haven't got any comfrey and want to buy some, make sure it's 'bocking 14' as it's sterile and doesn't take over the plot.

MarmiteToasty said...

It all looks wonderful... Im hoping to get an allotment in our village for next year, but I will say our allotment field is imaculate.... I will be a beginner but Im sure the 'crowd' will be friendly and laff at my mistakes :)

Popped over via Bobs blob..


MarmiteToasty said...

ps.. I to am in Hampshire :)


Maureen said...

MARMITE TOASTIE, thanks for the visit. I think after reading your last post (comment left) you should be called 'Unlucky Lady' !!!

I hope you don't wait too long for an allotment, there are huge waiting lists in most areas, only because it's considered 'trendy' now. Years ago anyone under 80 wouldn't have owned up to having one. Perhaps when people realise how much hard work is involved there will be vacant ones again. Of course it could go the other way and people realise what fun and how rewarding it all is, which it is believe me.

Joanne said...

What a pity you are surounded by neglect when your plot is such a picture.

Pam said...

Your plot looks so beautiful - I really love allotments, especially the sometimes ramshackle way they look with their 'alternative' sheds etc. But I hate to see weeds; like you I just worry that all those seed heads will choose to let fly when the wind is blowing in my patch's direction.
It's great to see everything growing so well.

Prospero said...

A little frustration this week? Not to worry - it builds character.

Besides, your stuff looks great.

My corn has come and gone. I have flowers on my eggplant for about 2 weeks now. (This is my first attempt at growing eggplant).

My cucumbers went on strike and my watermelon burst into song.

Ali said...

Hi Mo,
Great pictorial tour of your plot - lovely photo's. Can I have your recipe for the round squashes you mentioned as my "summer balls" (yellow ball courgettes) are now getting huge all of a sudden.
Ali :0)
p.s. I am with you on your whinge and support you 100% we have a long waiting list and a few jungles on ours too!

Jo said...

Your plot is looking great, Maureen, and so productive.
I can't understand why sites with huge waiting lists let plots stay vacant for so long. It ends up being much more hard work for the new tennant, and also annoys other tenants on the site.
Hope you have a great time at Hampton Court tomorrow.

Maureen said...

JOANNE & PAM, thanks for the comments. I hope that when I get back from the flower show on Thursday evening that the coucil will have kept thier promise and strimmed the weeds.
PROSPERO, yes you could say a bit frustrated this week. When you say your corn has come and gone!does that mean you got some cobs from it? or did you lose them all ?

ALI, I don't have a recipe as such, I just throw things together and experiment, but what I did was heat some olive oil (I guess about a tablespoon) in a roasting pan, then I washed, topped and tailed the round cougettes. I then cut them into quarters the reason I did that was because I roasted some cherry tomatoes with them, and the tomatoes wouldn't have mingled as well into the cougettes if they were left whole.
So to sum up, put the Courgette quarters into the warmed oil, with as many cherry tomatoes as needed. I then added 2 cloves of garlic, sliced not crushed, some fresh basil leaves (torn)a couple of sprigs of rosemary,and a some tarragon leaves,stripped off the stem,add salt & ground pepper, then bake until courettes are tender, the tomatoes will have split open and will mix nicely with the juices and herbs
It was delicious served with boiled potatoes and beef casserole.

Ali said...

Oh my word - sounds wonderful - my taste buds have just exploded into a million pieces!
Going to try that one ASAP!

Maureen said...

JO, thank you for the comment, and you are so right about the fact that leaving the plot so long before giving to someone on the list makes such hard work for that person.