Saturday, February 25, 2012

More Prep.

A cool sunny brilliant day today, with sunlight glimmering off any reflective surface and a cock pheasant shouting croakily from the field next door.

Bit by bit the allotment is getting cleaner and emptier.  I’m clearing pretty much everything from the beds, digging them over, raking them smooth and adding chicken manure pellets (organic ones).  I picked the last leeks and parsnips today, and pulled out old kale and cabbage which had been targeted mercilessly by pigeons.  All that remains now is a bed of chard and gone-to-seed salad, which I’ll tackle next week.

I sowed four more asparagus crowns – a variety called Gijnlim from Aldi.  There are already four crowns in the bed, and as this is their third summer I can start picking some this year.  The variety is Connover’s Collosal and it’s already pushing it’s way up through the soil in light greenish purple spears.  The new crowns will take a couple of years to establish, but I had the room so I might as well get them started.

I also sowed some shallot sets - Red Sun - and four pots of flower seeds; mixed calendula, lupins, dahlias and livingstone daisies.  I want to grow a mix of vegetables and flowers this year; I want the plot to be beautiful and colourful as well as productive.  Of course some plants will do both – like these crimson-flowered broad beans, adding a welcome flash of colour to the February plot.

Some of my seeds have shown their faces at last, the onions and leeks and tomatoes leading the charge.  Hopefully the peppers will get their act together soon too!

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