Sunday, 20 June 2010


Just six weeks ago the allotments looked like this...

The view from our plot they look like this.

17th June 2010

The allotment site has been entered in the London in Bloom contest which will be judged on 16th July. At first I found this unsettling and make me look at my planting in a different way as I can get competitive if the subject matter is right. Rather than long term plans I was thinking what would look good in a few weeks time. I've decided to ignore the competition and carry on as I am. While winning would be lovely it doesn't put food on my plate.

Pottering, poking, plotting

Today we shared our first strawberry...

20th June 2010

...marvelled at how quickly things are growing, including the pepper...

20th June 2010

...wondered about potato flowers and pottered and poked around the plot.

20th June 2010

We harvested more pea shoots, coriander, spinach beet and pak choi which went into a Thai Tom Yam soup for tea, adding our bounty at the very end for maximum taste and freshness.

I sowed some garlic chives, rocket and lovage seeds as well as planting some seedlings from our flat which I think are courgettes but I'm not 100% certain. Some of the courgette seeds I sowed on Thursday were showing their first leaves but there was no sign of the patty pans so I'll see if the ones in the propagator germinate in the next few days.

Most things are growing well, the sweetcorn had doubled in size since Thursday but my beans look peaky. The tomatoes and peppers have a slightly yellowish hue to them so I'll try feeding them next time I'm at the plot. I made some nettle tonic a few weeks ago which stinks but is worth a try. The only problem is we've been borrowing our neighbours watering can and I don't want to stink it out.

I also need to read up on spuds as I don't know if they should be allowed to flower or how to tell when they are ready. I had a poke around the roots last week but didn't spot any spuds.

We also found some cupboard doors at the entrance to the allotments which we've nabbed and will turn into a cold frame once the spuds have been harvested.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Places to buy plants in London

I'm not sure if I've mentioned it but we don't have a car. I like being car free but it does make getting plants, canes and kit to the allotment that little bit harder. I've been exploring where to buy plants in my vicinity so every so often I'll write about where I've been using public transport.

One of the fellow allotmenters is a wheel chair user so she is more limited than us in terms of access and transport availability, the tube is not wheelchair friendly which is appalling. Luckily we have good bus routes in London so if she mentions where she went by bus I'll let you know.

Busy, busy, busy

We've been spending loads of time at the allotment since we came home but by the time I get back in the evenings I'm too knackered to blog about it. I'm hoping once I get used to the "green gym" I'll have more energy to write about it.

Anyway, it's all looking good so I will try and get some photos up soon.

And in other news: I need a hoe.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Back to the plot

I've been on holiday in Kenya for the last two weeks. In between navigating local buses, eating delicious food, incredible wildlife encounters and wandering old Swahili backstreets my thoughts have wandered to the allotment. Our allotment neighbour has been keeping an eye on our plot (apparently something has been digging in our horseradish container) and keeping things watered.

We're heading up there today and will check on her patch as she's away this week. Our small garden has gone berserk while we've been away so it will be interesting to see how our plot is. Some of the seeds I planted at home before we left have germinated but I think the peppers, chillies and tomatoes need more heat to get going. I'll take some photos once I get my holiday snaps sorted out.

The lettuces in my window box are huge so I think that's lunch sorted, though I've been very spoilt in Kenya eating mango fresh from the tree. As Ken, our safari guide would say, "yum yum".