Welcome to our plot!

I'm Hazel, and in Nov 2006 my friend Jane and I took on a half plot at Hill Allotments, Sutton Coldfield - we want the satisfaction of growing and eating our own fruit and veg, and to improve our diet (and fitness!).

This is the story of what happened next...........

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Hoe, hoe, hoe!

It has been the most fabulous week – just like summer! Temperatures yesterday up to 25 degrees – of course the downside to this is that the ground is really drying out, & I’ve been up to the Hill watering in the evenings.

The broad beans are coming on – albeit with nibble marks all around the leaves, the culprits being pea & bean weevils which are the size of big ants & are earth coloured so that when you spot one & go to squish it, it drops on the ground & just disappears.

The way to beat the weevil seems to be to sow the broad beans in pots & plant them outside about now – in fact, just like Reg-next-plot & everybody else at the Hill. Well, you live & learn, as they say.

I’m really pleased that the seeds sowed at the Hill are now starting to come up apace – new arrivals ‘topside’ this week include the PEAS (kelvedon wonder) that S put in a couple of weeks ago, the SPRING ONION (white Lisbon) that Jane put in 3 weeks ago (no sign of the row I put in at the beginning of March, however), the TURNIP (snowball) & RADISH (Mirabeau) sowed in the week – boy, those brassicas sure know how to sprout!

Star of the week, however, must go to the two long rows of CARROT (Adelaide) that I sowed way back at the end of January & the middle of February, some of which are now definitely on display!

I hoed & weeded the whole plot, & put the last row of POTATO (cara) in – Reg-next-plot let me have 4 spare tubers of the same, so that’s made a full row. At Homebase in the week, I bought a half price bag of Maris Pipers so that’s the potatoes sorted.

To give the plot a treat I whizzed a dressing of chicken pellets over the whole lot – the box says to ‘apply 2 weeks before sowing, & monthly as a general fertiliser’, but this will no doubt boil down to ‘when I remember’.

I put a short row of LETTUCE (mixed), BEET (woden f1), CARROT (early nantes) in, & also – with an eye to putting the tomato plants in once the garlic are lifted – a row of marigold seeds. I was rather pleased with myself that I managed to think ahead in this way – as it has crossed my mind that once the early crops are out of the way, we wont be organised enough to have anything ready to follow on!

At home, the trough of PEA (kelvedon wonder), the CELERY (golden self blanching 3), & the CUCUMBER (marketmore) have come through, so it’s all go!

Looking at the sowing plan, the disappointments have to include any number of rows of LETTUCE (little gem) which have not come up anywhere at all (but it was old seed so probably serves me right!) & the BEET (woden F1) which is NEW seed, but hasn’t done anything yet. I suppose that into each life a little rain must fall – mind you, it would be good if that little rain could make it’s way to the Hill…


  1. The dratted bean weevil! Do you think there is anything to do so save our existing plants? My poor broad beans have been truly munched but they may still cope (I started them off inside). The peas that I sowed outside however look like they might have had it. Grrrrrrr

  2. Haze

    Brilliant progress - as always. I know what you mean about the need for some rain. My plot has gone from sticky glue to concrete. I have spent some time down there not getting very far - 5 hours to dig a 6' x 8' patch - very disheartening.

    Come on rain.


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