Allotment News



  • I think everyone had a bad tomato season last year from what I can make out. Im putting mine in soil in the g/h this time.

  • Hoorah!!   I have planted my tatties, over 100 onions of 2 varieties and some spring garlic.

    And apparently growing chives is good for confusing carrot fly- not sure if it gets rid of them but certainly confuses them.

    I have also created an intricate pattern of netting and bamboos to attempt to disuade the local cats from digging everything back up again!

    Room left for sweetcorn, carrots, beans and salad if I can keep the motivation up- got to do something while I can't run.

  • A shotgun usually works well on cats.
  • They're MY cats!image (well 2 of 'em are, happy to shoot the restimage).
  • Nicko - no guarantee that a greenhouse will stop blight - if it's a really wet period, blight will get in anywhere. I lost a greenhouse full of toms to blight a few years ago.......

    at least Easter was good in the SE to get things done - finished the deep bed off and now planted with first of the salad leaves already showing after just 4 days. I've strung thin wire across the bed to deter next door's cat from having a dump in it - if the bastard gets in despite that, I'll link a 12v car battery to it and fry the sod.........

    another good tip to deter cats - a water pistol - they hate that!!!
  • Now that is a good sport (runs off to find cubs' supersoakers and sets up camp near the veg patch!!)

    I'm planting some seeds with my younger son today, we're a bit behind but never mind, salad sounds good. Still haven't got any sweetcorn seeds......

  • or if you feel really vindictive against cats - a catapult.........just make sure you have a good aim or expect some collateral damage!
  • 1st show on potatoes image

    Carrots have popped up too in raised bed.

    Toms are coming on well.

  • Evening folks! image

    Not been on this thread much recently tell you the truth, I've been feeling a tad guilty about not getting on with the garden.image  Too much uni work to do, but Easter vacation has allowed me to catch up a bit.

    Still - potatoes and onions are now inimage, and pretty much everything else I wanted to grow can be sowed/planted in April-May, so still time!  Have sown a few herbs as well, but need to buy a load more compost before I can sow anything else in pots.

    Need also to buy a few large containers for the salads and will do so tomorrow/Tuesday - far more space on the actual plot used for spuds this year, but we have a lot of wasted space on the garden that's currently just messily concreted over (can't afford to start again and get the whole thing landscaped right now), so still useful space for container growing.

    Hubby's reconstructed a previously tumble-down wall and made a raised bed at the back of the garden, which in the long term we want to use for fruit, but for now I'm going to use the space for bean wigwams.  Just need to bring in a load more topsoil when I go and get those containers.

    Have decided against growing toms and brassicas this year - we only have a smallish garden, so I've decided to concentrate on stuff that's likely to be more productive per amount of effort, based on previous experience, so loads of second-early spuds (they did really well last year), french beans, courgettes, onions, carrots, chard and salad stuff.  Still tempted to sow some peas though - even though the yield wasn't brilliant last year they were soooo tasty!

    I'm also having a problem with cats, or "the little bastards" as they tend to be known round here image (and this is coming from someone who lists cats as one of her favourite animals - just shows how gardening can change your views).  Have liberally dusted the plot with pepper dust, but that doesn't seem to have deterred them - next thing to do is string up some trip-wires. Purchase of a supersoaker may also be on the cards.

    Happy gardening, folks! image

  • Hi all. My first tatties are showing and I think some garlic is showing. Lady P, I'm doing exactly the same with what veg we are growing this year. Stuff we buy loads extra of in addition to our organic veg bag.

    I have netting which I throw over the plot initially, that works. But I don't have enough image.

  • Exciting times!

    First potatoes are powering away, and have been earthed up twice now. They are in a bag in the greenhouse. The outside ones are just popping up, but that's deliberate - they were a fortnight later and left outside to be cooler, slower and extend the harvest. Bet it still doesn't work.

    Carrots are in a bucket with a piece of old stocking on it to prevent root fly. First shoots are up.
    Beets - two seedlings appeared, rest soon hopefully.
    Chard- slow to germinate - maybe another week, but they're under glass.
    Tommies: Job to do - must plant the sungolds in the greenhouse to get them accellerated. The rest can wait.

    I looked around for Growmore at the shops, and came away with a large box of pelletted chicken shit. Virtually odour free, so it says. Well I virtually can't smell it. (Actually it's not bad).

  • I always think dashing out into the street with a brush and shovel after the horses pass gets me admiring looks from the neighbours.
  • Pelleted chicken shit is great and then you can grow potatoes in the buckets afterwards.

    JB- we've got some illegally grazing horses in the field behind our house at the moment so I send cub1 out gathering with a bucket. Great for the compost heap.

    Just planted orange beetroot today and some carrots- yet more complicted anticat  devices in situ.

    Spotted my first onion sprouting today- hoorah.

    Must plant my peppers if we're to eat them this year. Heated propogator is in the loft which is no help at all.

  • salad leaves shooting
    little gem lettuce shooting
    chard shooting
    no sign yet of spring onion, leeks and parsley seedlings coming up but they are always slow (especially parsley - bugger to grow from seed)

    spuds in bags need earthing up

    and this weekend I will plant out my outdoor toms in pots as they are getting too big now to leave in small pots - where I live I suspect we have seen that last of frosts anyway.....

    chilli seedlings coming along nicely

    french beans and yard long beans need planting into pots soon

    it's getting busy!!
  • I'm feeling really behind reading FB's status. But my first basil seedlings are coming through and I'm glad it's not just me who had problems with parsley. Mind you I struggle with getting runner and frencch beans to germinate as well, no such problems with broad beans which none of us actually like but Cub2 has insisted we grow since he grew a plant at nursery!
  • runner and french beans are about the easiest to germinate ime - just stick them in some multipurpose, water and they should be up in a few days. best of you use fresh not old seeds though.......
  • Help needed with my cauliflowers please!

    I planted mine out that I have grown from seed and they were doing ok until a day or two ago. Something appears to be eating them. I've only seen one slug trail so I put some slug pellets down and I've been keeping my eyes on them but can't see anything actually having a munch on them.

    I've got some mesh/gauze-stuff from Homebase. Will the sun get through it if I cover the plants to protect them and how long will I have to keep them covered?

    Thank you!

  • Fresh seeds this year FB, so fingers crossed. No idea about cauliflowers, sorry Mandie, never grown 'em.
  • when you say eating them, is this the green leaves or from the base??

    if from the base, blame cabbage root fly - maybe a bit early but it could be that - not much you can do at this stage unless you treat the soild to kill the maggots of said fly....

    if it's the greens, it could be snails or caterpillar so see what happens with slug pellets and check for 'pillars

    gauze is fine but you need to find the cause first
  • If the leaf edges have semi circular holes nibbled in them, it could be flea beetle, which our allotment seems plagued with every year. They seem partial to anything brassica ish.

    Sorry mind's gone blank as to what we use on them, it's not organic though. White liquid diluted in the watering can, smells like creosote a bit...someone will tell me.

  • Thank everyone, FB, its the leaves that seem to be affected at the moment - will keep my eye on them.
  • Liquid  Derris  for flea beetleimage

  • "White liquid diluted in the watering can, smells like creosote a bit"

    Jeyes Fluid??

    the other little blighter in the garden which is partial to nibbling leaves is the vine weevil - the adults cut semi-circular patterns on leaves (but I don't know if they feed on brassicas but some of our perennial plants are affected) and the grubs chew the roots which causes growth problems......the grubs are the worse enemy plus they grow into adults so you need to kill the grubs preferably

    they're a bugger to get rid of although there is a chemical drench that does do some good but you may not want to use that on the edible stuff
  • Have monitored the munching and this morning there is evidence of slugs (well - there was a dead one on my soil at the end of a slimey trail) so I'll sprinkle some more slug pellets in the area and hope that they get the message and bugger off to next doors garden.

    I also woke up to find another 'pest' having a feast on my recently planted brussell bloomin rabbit had escaped in the night and was helping himself!!!!!

    This 'growing my own veg' malarki was fine whilst everything was in the greenhouse!!!!

  • Blimey - I think I'm further behind than anyone else on this thread!  Oh well - just about caught up now, effort-wise at least - just need to wait for things to happen!

    Well...  I've put down a load of cat repellent (the herbal stuff that smells strongly of garlic) down on the areas of ground I've not done anything with yet, as the pepper dust didn't seem to be doing anything.  Also strung up wires across the bits where I've sown/planted stuff.

    So far, so good, although I'm sure some of the more bare-faced, brazen little buggers'll still have a go at sh1tting on my nice soil. image

    Still have some, erm, 'detritus' image to clear from the raised bed at the back before I get in more topsoil and get the beans in.

    Have now sown/planted everything apart from beans - courgettes/squashes are germinating indoors right now along with a load of herbs, so have held off sowing salads in containers and have sown a load in the ground I'll eventually use for the squashes - I'll use the salad as baby leaves/CCA seedlings so the space should be free by the time I come to plant out the other veg and then I'll switch to container-grown salads.

    As for slugs, Mandie, I have organic slug pellets, but they're also supposed to dislike slithering over fresh coffee grounds and crunched up pistacchio nut shells, so it might be worth giving that a go?

    EDIT: Oh, and parsley - I haven't had too much trouble in the past, with the flat-leafed variety at least.  Best thing to do is to sow it indoors, pour boiled/hot water over the freshly-sown seeds and keep them somewhere nice and warm to germinate.

  • Hello Lady P, I see you're fully signed up to the cat annihilation league along with the rest of us. I give the stuff back to the owners, and just water the ground. Cats don't like a wet soily toily.

    A big pest of caulis and cabbages is still the Wood Pigeon at this time of year. I've got two that live very close by, next door's trees I think. They are so fat that they can only just about fall off the fence to get some food. I'll call them Wayne and Waynetta.

    BTW. The spuds in bags in the GH have grown another 2" in just 24 hours! image

  • Fecking pigeons - yes, they are pests (I think the ones round here are the common "sky rat" variety).  There's a house opposite ours with holes in the roof tiling, and I think the blighters actually live in the roof there (god only knows what that house must be like inside image).

    Will have to be really careful about providing some kind of barrier when I plant the squashes out - last year a couple of courgette plants were destroyed almost immediately after they were planted by the stems being snapped.

    *goes out to water soil as thoroughly as possible to deter "little feline bastards"*

  • Quick question- how long should runner beans take to sprout? Paranoid about mine as I never have any luck with them.

    Sweetcorn are coming through now and lots of onions and garlic- bloody pigeons, they love pecking up the bulbs just for the fun of it.

  • get a air rifle, i got mine second hand from the gun shop £100.00

    i have loads of sky rats as my garden backs on to loads of trees where they are nesting plus they wake me up most mornings now the bedroom window is open through the night sounds crawl but at the end of the day they are a flying rat

  • Spuds are all starting to show and the hostas are way above ground now. i have one called "Sum and Substance" which is absolutely MASSIVE.

    i love hostas, me.

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