Dienstag, 23. Februar 2021

Final flourish of the winter

We had a cold spell in the middle of February and the temperature drop was too much for the Palmenkohl - they just withered and died. The savoy cabbages were gnawed through at the trunk and at the base of the leaves, just leaving the "soft" flat part of the leaves behind. I expect it was mice or voles looking for something sweet to eat. The romanesco plants just rotted before the hearts got bigger than a tangerine. The only real winner was the kohlrabi.
There are still a couple of good looking plants left before the brassicas are all done. Meanwhile in the orchard, there are a few splashes of colour as the crocuses come through.
I look forward to the leaf buds setting soon.

Samstag, 23. Januar 2021

No obvious effects of snow

There was a modest amount of snow last week which made the allotment off limits - you couldn't see where the beds were and the ground was very soft. Today a quick showed that the brassicas are unaffected, and I could take some kale leaves for tonight's kale and pommegarnate salad.
There was even the first glimpse of the romanesco. Of the six plants, two show signs of a heart, and neither are much bigger than a conker. Maybe baby romanesco is a thing.

Freitag, 1. Januar 2021

Winter brassicas

The six Palmenkohl plants (palm cabbages) seem to be working well.
As I harvest the mature leaves the stalk gets longer, making the palm tree effect. We have had the leaves sizzled quickly in a frying pan. Very tasty. The six kohlrabi plants were a moderated success. They made small kholrabis, but they were tasitier than expected. The disadvantage is that once harvested they are gone.
They will also get another try next winter.

Dienstag, 29. Dezember 2020

New allotment up and running

After many happy years with my old allotment, 2020 was a chance to start again from scratch with a plot much closer to home. The new allotment is adjacent to the orchard and in shouting distance of home. Apart from the nearness, the main advantage is meeting all teh people who stroll past going round the block. The ground had never been worked and so the first months were spent clearing the worst of the stone from the first beds.
By late summer we had had the first crops (potatoes and pumkins mainly) and test brassicas were in for the winter. We have since been enjoying palm cabbage (Palmenkohl) and kohlrabi. I have used some of the biggest stones to build a small henge / stone circle. It is aligned carefully and bring a smile to passing neighbours.
In the small strip of woodland between the orchard and our garden (near the stream) we have put in a hedgehog house in autumn 2019. For the first time there is a hedgehog in there (the small stick over the door moved). That is a great thing.

Montag, 30. Juli 2018

No rain but plenty of bees and apples

We have not had any proper rain for a couple of months now. Although the grass and the Michealmas daisies are dead, most things are doing fine on their own. The apple tree (now about 10 years old) is completely covered in apples and their weight has dragged the branches down to the ground. The result is a nice shady cave.

Apple tree at allotment
At home, their is still water flowing in the stream (the Riedsbach). The local bee population has obviously been forced out of other options and now spends all day commuting back and forth across our "lawn" to drink at the stream.

Samstag, 14. Juli 2018

Hedge trimmed, but should still keep cows out

One edge of the allotment now has a freshly cut hedge. I can only reach the inside edge and up to about 1,80m (6 ft). In principle I have to keep it to 1,70m but despite my efforts, that whole edge has gone crazy and is about 4,00m high now. I have no idea what to do about that - maybe if I just ignore the problem, it will go away ...

Meanwhile, the sunflowers are really enjoying the hot dry weather. They are around 2,00m and most have three or four flowers. The bumble bees are enjoying them.

Dienstag, 3. Juli 2018

Competition marrow and sun flowers

This year's competition is focused on growing the best marrow. 2018 is the 10th anniversary of the Horticultural Society and so there is bound to be some extra enthusiasm for the coveted "Special Prize".

One of the competition marrows
It will be up to the judge to decide what makes the "best" marrow, but I will be doing my best to win.

There are also a dozen sunflower plants growing at the allotment this year. Right now they are about 2,00m high, and I have brought the first vase full home.
Sunflowers at the allotment
I look froward to more sunflowers over the next couple of weeks or so.