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, September 19, 2009

Making Edges & Marrow Cream

Although I did get a lot done today at the Hill, I did spend an awful long time doing it.

I wanted to make some headway with that side of the plot by neighbour Ted (where I plan to put in beds for the permanent crops & fruit) which is getting pretty shabby & overgrown. Although I can't put these beds in until all of the existing beds are shorted to their new 16' length, there is still work to be done in that area.

First off was to get rid of the next gooseberry bush - there were five of these altogether & with two down (& scratches healed!) I took the fork to the next in line.

At that point the lady from the stables arrived with a trailerful of horse muck, we chatted as we unloaded the bags from the trailer, & I picked some sweetcorn cobs for her to take. "Well, this takes me back!" she laughed "when I lived in Bermuda they cooked corn cobs at the side of the road - wonderful!"

Just as I was wondering why the devil she had moved back here, Woodchipping Paul arrived & so I helped him to empty the manure bags into the skip, keeping half a dozen to put on my own compost heap. A good - if mucky - workout.

Back with the gooseberry bush, disaster struck when I gave the fork one heft too many, & the shaft broke. Fortunately it was the 'spare' fork with the uncomfortable handle & wonky tines which seemed to arrive with the plot - the trusty Spear & Jackson stainless steel fork made a rather better job it, admittedly after a great deal of effort.

I then set about pruning the currant bushes - not sure quite how this was supposed to go, but ended up with an 'open goblet' shape on each one when I finished, so I was happy with that. Finally I whacked the whole area over with a spade and rake to level. Much better.

By this time, the compost bin was precariously full of cuttings and weeds, so I decided to call it a day, picking a SQUASH (olive), FRENCH BEANS (purple giant & dried early warwick), SWEETCORN (tender & true), CUCUMBER (burpless tasty green) & RUNNER BEANS (essex bb & reg-next-plot) to take home.

After a well needed bath, I set about making some marrow cream with the squash picked earlier - peeling, scooping out the seeds, chopping and steaming - it's supposed to be rather like lemon curd, which sounds yummy. It makes me wonder if it is so lovely, why I have never heard of it before...?


  1. Definitely the sign of a hard worker when the fork gives up the ghost!

    I know very little about growing food but 'open goblet' is definitely right for currants.

    The marrow cream sounds brilliant, and I LOVE lemon curd, Nic (Nipitinthebud) may have finally cracked what to do with all those courgettes.

  2. ...or the sign of an old & not very good quality fork! {grin}

    Slight problem with the currant bushes is that there are two redcurrant & two blackcurrant - I don't know which one is which, & I think that they may have to be treated differently...

    Will report back on the marrow cream - it's on the hob as I type!


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