This is such a busy time on the allotment, so many things changing really quickly and so many jobs to do! We’ve had a few days there this month as well as growing plants at home, and the chickens now live there too!
Last Sunday we moved them, and noticed one wasn’t looking too well. We’ve been visiting a lot to check on her and a kind allotment neighbour gave us some chicken tonic to put in her water. (We’ve ordered some more but what we’ve given them should last until ours arrives.) Hopefully she will perk up a bit soon. They love the weeds there, and we throw a couple in every now and then as they’ve cleared the ground in their run.
On the growing front, things are moving fast. The redcurrant bush is laden with fruit, and the fruit trees (well, some of them) have blossomed and it looks like we have a few potential pears.
We’ve planted a row of onion sets now, although we need to get some more white onions. We’ve also used a bit more precision when planting the raised beds and put lines along them to mark rows of seeds. I feel like a proper grown up now after last year’s ‘chuck some seeds in and hope’ approach. We’ve sown beetroot, parsnips and two types of carrot directly into the soil.
When I was planting yesterday it was really noticeable that the soil was warm to the touch. It definitely feels like a good time to be planting! The allotments are always busy at the moment; the only time I had to unlock was when I went on Tuesday in the daytime.
Today we (me and my daughter) went to plant the strawberries in the troughs. I forgot to take a photo, but we were distracted by a snail and a shiny golden beetle. She got fed up quite quickly so I had to cut our allotment visit short, but it was quite nice to have some unrushed time with her to just take in all of the nature. She’s so into creatures and loves to watch them, and I’m trying to enjoy that with her (even though I’m a wuss when it comes to touching them!)
As we move into May there are yet more beds to be planted, and a second sowing of carrots, beetroot and parsnips. The area where the chicken coop was in our garden is being dug out, and the manure/straw/bark chippings will be added to the allotment. The plastic greenhouse is full of tomatoes, beans and aubergines, as well as courgettes, pumpkins and some newly sown butternut squash. Luckily the greenhouse protected them from the overnight frosts we’ve had this week.
I was beginning to worry that we were really behind, but I feel like we’ve caught up a bit now. Some of our plans have had to be down scaled because Mr C is having an operation in June and I will need to be able to tend to the allotment myself for a couple of weeks, so I don’t want anything too high maintenance. That means the straw bale garden plans are being saved for next year, as are planting any ambitious or unusual crops. (I’ll be happy as long as I’ve got a home grown parsnip on my Christmas dinner plate!)
How is your growing going? Have your plants survived the recent chilly nights? What other jobs are you trying to get done in the garden?