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...........

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Sorry, Keats...

Not quite the season of ‘mists & mellow fruitfulness’, more the season of 'getting a bit nippy & being rained on'.

However, the beans won’t pick themselves, so it was on with the wax jacket & beanie hat & off to the Hill.

I wasn’t quite alone – Teacher Barry was having a clear up of his plot & told me that novice neighbour Jody had been laid low with kidney stones – sounds very painful, so get well soon, Jody.

I’d promised a couple of orange SQUASH (red kuri) to cheery Brian & Pauline, so I cut the six remaining fruit off the plant & popped a couple up to their plot along with half a dozen of the pomme d’or & a redmolo for a bit of variety.

Jane arrived as I was trying to make some order of the beans – they are not all mature & dry by any stretch so I was a bit loathe to pick them, but with the climbers, the canes are in grave danger of blowing over, so something had to be done. We discussed a compromise, & stripped most of the leaves off the plants, thus making them less susceptible to high winds, & picked off any beans that looked ripe.

The two rows which we did have all the beans off were the FRENCH BEAN (tendergreen), & the climbing BARLOTTO (lingua de fueco) from Jody. The latter do not look remotely like the other barlottis as they have long round pencil like pods & smallish mauve seeds, but that’s what it said on the packet. Either way they have been fabulous to eat fresh & have cropped like mad – definitely one for next year.

With the beans in better shape, we turned to the SWEETCORN (tender & true) – it’s getting past its best now, so we had the last of the cobs off & pulled the plants up. This has been another excellent crop – lasting ages & we’ve both had loads of gorgeous sweet cobs. Whilst we were in chop-down mode, we felled the sunflower (easier said than done!) as it was starting to shed some of its seed & I brought the head home to dry off.

Today’s star prize is this CALABRESE (Waltham) – a total surprise as I’m sure it was no where near forming a head last time I looked – and it tasted just as good as it looks! Yum yum!


  1. Well done with the calabrese. It's always half for me and half for the caterpillars here, even with netting. We never had half so much bother at our old site - maybe 5 miles away. Still, we had bother from kids there so you win some, lose some!

  2. Thank you very much Hazel for the little squash and very very much for the kind compliment. GAP

  3. Well you could have knocked me down with a feather when I saw the calabrese, Kath - thought it would happen in the spring for some reason.

    Diligent caterpillar relocation the key here!

    Glad you like the squash, Plum - the little green ones will go golden yellow if you can leave them for a few days, so I hope they will make a good contrast for your tablecentre.

  4. Got til Oct 25 to let them go golden, they will be beautiful. Which cat is the photograph of? He looks really friendly

  5. That's Domino, Plum - and don't let his angelic looks fool you! He is more photogenic than Oliver tho' - black cats don't make good photos!

  6. Hi Hazel! Long time no see! Im finally back on my feet free from stones and free from study for at least 6 months! yey! Anyway I intend to spend some much needed time on the plot this weekend and was wondering where I might find the Green Manure?? Im guessing in the shed?? Also how much of it is mine to use?

    Hope yr well, poss cu the weekend


  7. Hi Jody - good to see you back fighting fit!

    Yep - the green manure seed is on the shelf on the left hand side in the shed in a tupperware container. Use what you like - sow a generous handful or so per square yard, or thinly in rows 6-8" apart.

    See you on Sat, maybe.


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