In praise of watermelon

Uh-oh, seed buying is continuing. This time from Baker Creek across the pond. All squash seeds: Flat White Boer, Jarrahdale (I’ve had my eye on that one since last year…), Noob Taub, Iran (not a very imaginative name, I can’t imagine that Iran just has the one variety!) and Geraumon Martinique. There would probably have been more, but there is a seed swap site on t’internet that I am hoping to pillage in the new year for the rest of my ‘seed need’ list…and there is also January’s Seedmas with an overwhelming choice of new varieties coming through the seed circles.

I will need another plot for all this! Here’s hoping my name gets nearer the top of the waiting list next year.

What with all the socialising on the weekend I didn’t have much time at the plot. It also turns out I am really not very good at sharing my space. Didn’t realise that I had got quite so territorial about it, but I have. In spades.

navy bed finishedAnyway, with a mammoth 15 extra bags of topsoil, 6 barrows of manure, 2 massive bags of leaves, the navy bed has been finished and planted with 30 slightly sprouting saffron bulbs in 5 rows of 6, as well as some broccoli for next year. The next pink bed frame is partly up – I need to measure, cut and paint some planks for the remainder. Clearing that space took quite a bit of time, the tarp I put down in January had decomposed into tiny bits, and new bed calculationswe found a lot of carpet and several red ants’ nests under the weeds/soil. Maggie painstakingly got the tarp and most of the tiny little bits of it up. We also got 2 barrows of carpet removed, 3 barrows of compressed weeds, and there is some carpet that runs under the next plot’s path which defeated us and will need cutting.

Still, that represents huge progress in terms of making a dent in Debris Corner. And we got out to pick enough sloes for another 3 bottles of gin. I think I’ll stop there with it – there aren’t as many sloes this year as last and the birds will be grateful of them.

rouge vif turning orangeThe squashes on the plot are doing well. The Rouge Vif d’Etamps are a vivid orange and look so beautiful. And I am very chuffed that the butternuts are visibly swelling. I’ll be scanning the forecasts soon to check frosts aren’t on the horizon!

Andy gave me a pot of this year’s allotment honey in exchange for seeds. I absolutely love the honey his bees produce, it’s so much nicer than shop honey and I swear it helps calm my insect allergies.

melon innardsHarvested kale, achocha, runners, leeks, tomatoes, chillies, padron peppers. I also cut the 2 courgettes for the seed circle (now sunning themselves on my windowsill till they go leathery) and, *small
fanfare* picked my watermelon. I don’t think it was quite ripe but the plant was dead. It weighed 2.5kg and is delicious. And I am so chuffed to have grown one, and outside at that.

Categories: Diary 2014

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