Easter is a time many of us get out into our gardens and start to think about planting out our bedding plants.. But its also that time of year that the weather often takes an unexpected turn and plunges back into the cold..
Last year we went away the end of April beginning of May for a week and left our sweetcorn in the cold frame. However a sharp frost and unexpected snow killed it, so we had to start again.. So do keep an eye out on the forecasts for frosts and low temps etc… And keep those tender plants protected.. The cabbages and Brassica family should be fine if you have hardened them off sufficiently though.. And next week I think we will be putting ours into the prepared limed positions..
So what have we been doing all week? The best way I think is in picture format..
First my Hubby dug two trenches and filled them with manure. We then carried the old swing frame we use to support the canes to its new position in the garden. The beans are in in the greenhouse thriving.
This piece of land my hubby lightly sprinkled some Manure over and then forked it over.. This is where this year we will plant sweetcorn and Leeks and the Dahlias are going nearer the potatoes this year.
I set too and started to weed this section out. The line is to help me see where the Gladioli’s are, as they are just starting to shoot through.. Last year we decided to see how they went if we left them all in the ground. But you can see how overgrown they are.. Lots of poppies, which I love, had to come up.
Now you can see the weeding almost done one side of the line. I leave in the marigolds.. You will see these flowers dotted all over the allotment, They are very good at keeping some bugs at bay..
Now you can see I also cleared the path leading up to the greenhouse
I also weeded out the ground between the raspberries and loganberries. All shooting nicely now.
Below you can see the view as I stand with my back to the sheds. I left in lots of marigold seedlings I will leave many of these in and also use to transplant back in my home garden and dot around the allotments as they act as good pest control to certain bugs..
When you are not using chemical pest controls, these tips and more can be found on the BBC Gardening Guide on why marigolds and Nasturtiums are good for pest control. Link to the below quote can be found HERE
- Grow French marigolds among tomatoes. Marigolds emit a strong odour that will repel greenfly and blackfly.
- Grow sage with carrots or plants in the cabbage family to ward off pests. Both have strong scents that drive away each other’s pests.
- Plant nasturtium with cabbages – they’re a magnet for caterpillars that will then leave the cabbages alone.
- Garlic planted among roses will ward off aphids.
- Plant carrots and leeks together on the allotment or vegetable patch to protect against a number of pests. Leeks repel carrot fly and carrots repel onion fly and leek moth.
Make sure companion plants are planted at the same time as your edible crops to prevent pests from getting a foothold.
In the foreground are the Autumn fruiting Raspberries and the tall Blueberries, .. The loganberries are on the framework and behind those are the raspberry canes that fruit early summer.
I am extremely pleased, that this year we have lots of blossom on our apple trees.. One is a cooker the other an eater ..
Two apple trees and blackberries at the end. The green shoots are gladioli from the small corms left in the ground. I have left in to see how they mature.
Click onto the images this will take you into the slide module where you can read more.
This collection of bins contain rotting compost material, other bins contain left over manure. to the left you can see our giant blackberries.. These are the bought cultivated variety. If memory serves I think these were called ‘Apache’.. 🙂 These we were given by another allotment grower a a couple of years ago.. They only really got going last year .
This piece is where we had the butternut Squash last year.. The water system 🙂 , still in place.. And has still to be cleared and sorted.. And that rickety old shed is still standing despite the high winds.. but this summer it will definitely come down..
These are wild blackberries, that grow rampant behind our shed and our neighbours allotment shed on the boarder between the two allotments… We both share the pickings and we also let the nettles grow here.. Good for wild life. Some butterflies lay eggs on nettle leaves, so if you see brown/black furry little caterpillars,, These a Peacock butterflies for the following year.
So Wishing you a very Happy Easter
and Happy Gardening