Monday, 18 July 2011

General catch-up

I've just got back from a quick session on the allotment, and it's doing well. This year I haven't harvested as much as I usually do, but then I haven't put in as much work either! Notable successes so far include beetroot, blackcurrants, various herbs, a giant sunflower which was self-sown and my lovely little potted fig tree. My (once) wild burdock is looking good too - I'm quite excited about trying it. As usual, though, I'm struggling with carrots and rhubarb, and this year my beans have failed miserably too...

I was just thinking about my mulching system of old cardboard boxes covered with grass clippings, wondering whether it's really such a great idea. It provides a lovely damp home for slugs, and doesn't seem to deter the bindweed at all. But as I was tidying up a little frog hopped out, and just a bit further away a lizard scuttled over the warm dry cardboard. Then a cricket landed on my head. There is such a fantastic variety of wildlife on my plot, I really don't want to disturb things if I can help it. Even the slugs are interesting! As long as they're not too close to my salad plants.

I've done very little foraging this year. I always pick wild greens from my allotment, and I've had a few cherries and redcurrants from the hedgerow, but that's about all. Blackberries are just coming into season though, as are cherry plums, so perhaps it's about time I got my act together! I recently acquired an ice-cream maker, so now a whole new world of preserving has opened up to me...


Redcurrants growing in the hedgerow, click for larger image.


  1. I love your blog. It always gives me such a lovely sense of calm and peace. :)

  2. Aww.. thank you Charlee! I find writing really difficult and it always seems like such an effort to update it, but it's really nice to have a record of the things I do and see :)

  3. Just eaten a beetroot salad with red currants in it. Neither grown in my garden. Ignoring the neighbours Nasturtiums (which are edible and apparently good for keeping pests off apparently http://igrowveg.com/2010/07/5-reasons-why-you-should-grow-nasturtiums-near-vegetables/) there's only the Quinces. Mind you the buddleia attracted its first butterfly (a Comma). Found bilberries growing all over the nature reserve above Whitwick.
    Keep up the growing as in a small way you're helping polar bears by absorbing carbon dioxide :D

    (google account doesn't work as an id any more :( )

  4. That all sounds good Ian! Did you pick any bilberries? I haven't found any growing near me :(

  5. Last time I saw any was Tarn Hows in the Lake district over thirty years ago. Will pick some soon assuming the byelaws sign doesn't mention anything about forbidding harvesting of fruit.