Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Five and a half hours working on the plot

It was so hot today wasn't it ? too hot in fact to work on the allotment, but I needed to get on and get cracking if all the jobs were to be done.  I had some help though as the hubby decided to give me a hand with preparing the bed for the Globe Artichokes. I had twelve to plant in total, six from Victoriana nursery and six I had grown from seed. Stephen's leaflet that accompanied the plants when they arrived recommended 3ft apart but that was pushing my allotted space a bit, so they were planted a little under the 3ft, but they seem to have ample room.

They are all in now and look good. I only wish I had a better look at the artichoke bed at RHS Wisley last year, that way I would know how big they are going to look. I know they get to 6ft but I'm not sure just how bushy they grow. Here's a photo of the finished bed. We had to scout around for some old concrete walling to bank the bed up.  My plot is on a slope so to even it out we put the walling blocks in and then evened the soil against them. It then drops down a little to the two rows of asparagus, so all the permanent plants are in one area now. I am very pleased with my box hedge that runs along my boundary. I got them from Free-cycle last year as someone was digging up their hedge along their front garden. I didn't think they would re-plant as they had been dug up and left for a week or so before we collected them, but they have taken well.

 This photo is looking down the artichoke bed and as you can see in the foreground I have planted lot's of cutting that I grew of Box taken from one I had in the garden at home. They will take ages to get to the size of the others, but they are growing and looking healthy.

 This is a photo of the fruit area. The raspberries are just growing up through lots of lovely manure. I cut them right back as they are autumn fruiting. The strawberries are in the little raised bed and there is a red gooseberry, a green gooseberry, about four different varieties of  rhubarb, a blackcurrant and the newly planted Tayberry. oh and two little twigs ! that are blackberries given to me by a friend which have taken and are just showing good healthy signs of growth. 
PS. that scruffy looking plot that looks like 'Steptoe's' yard is a neighbouring plot on the other side of a shared path !!! just in case you clicked to enlarge the photo and think it's mine !!! ha ha

I have some lovely tulips growing just outside the greenhouse which are beautiful shades of deep pink and a lovely green. The wallflowers didn't do so well this year on the plot, but the ones at home did ! I can't wait to get all my cosmos, dahlias, marigold, zinnia's and cornflowers in the flower beds. I love to have lot's of flowers on the plot to look cheery and for cutting and of course for the bees.

Whilst preparing the bed today I found dozens of Borage plants growing, all self seeded, so I saved a half dozen to dot around the place and had to compost the rest. I also found lot's of the lovely sunflower plant-lets from the multi-headed  sunflower from last year I think it was called Royal Velvet,or Velvet queen ?? something like that.   It had lots of small heads in bronze, red, gold and russet colours and it isn't to tall either.


Caro (UrbanVegPatch) said...

Five and half hours? Me, too! I quite deliberately didn't go out until 3 in the afternoon so that I could work in the shade but I was digging so still got quite warm! You've done so well and it's lovely to see photos of your plot - even with Steptoe's Yard in the background!
I've seen artichokes growing in various gardens and the spread is impressive - at least 3 feet! You'll have to show us the progress! Happy gardening! Caro xx

Vegetable Heaven said...

Permanent plantings are great arent they? Most of mine are fruit but I have just planted a horseradish thong (we both love horseradish sauce).
It seems to have been a very good year for tulips.

allot of veg said...

Five and a half hours! Gosh how I'd love to spend five and a half hours at the allotment. I managed 35 minutes after work last night...
You plot is looking great on all the attention and as to steptoes yard - are you sure you are not my plot neighbour?

Damo said...

It all looks really good. I'm pleased with the fruit so far this year, the raspberries and strawberries look great so I'm hoping for a bumper harvest!

Deb said...

Oh I'm impressed! Looks like it was worth risking the sunburn! I'd love to spend that long on my allotment. One day...

Maureen said...

Thanks everyone for the comments.
CARO you are wiser than me, I should have gone later in the day when it would have been cooler.

VEG Heaven, I really fancy growing horseradish, but I overheard someone say it takes over the place, so I hope you have put yours into a container !

Allot of Veg, you do make me laugh, I love your sense of humour, so I wish we were plot neighbours !!

DAMO I think we are all in for a bumper fruit crop this year, even my two blueberry bushes in my garden have masses of flowers this year.

DEB I did get sunburn ! and stupidly didn't take any sunscreen with me, ah well it will be brown instead of red tomorrow.

Pam said...

I haven't got any artichokes fully grown yet, but I do have a couple of cardoons which are similar. And they're huge! You may have a little jungle on your hands in a couple of years - but you'll also have a great looking plot with lots of artichokes. Which will be wonderful.
Have a great Easter weekend - don't forget the sunscreen!
P xx

Maureen said...

OOooooh I don't like the sound of a little Jungle PAM, I can always dig some up I expect if they get out of hand.
m x

Pam's English Garden said...

Dear Maureen, I had no idea artichokes grew so tall! I can't believe your hot weather - it is freezing here. Have a lovely Easter! P x

Pam said...

And you can always pass some onto your 'Steptoe' neighbour too - make a good screen for you!
P xx

Janet/Plantaliscious said...

Looking good! I've just sown some "Velvet Queen" sunflowers, hope I get some self seeded plants next year. I was thinking about planting some borage too, but I may spot some popping up on the plot, apparently there is a lot of it about, and of course most people weed it out.