Sunday, 6 October 2013

Sunday On The Allotment - 6 Oct - Clearing and Crops

St Ives Cornwall Allotment
At last - the arrival of some decent allotmenting weather in Cornwall  - and I hope - elsewhere.

I headed out in the sunshine to my plot beneath the Penwith Hills.

Lots to do - one key "lesson learned" from last year is that time and effort invested in October and November - before the worst of the weather closes in - pays dividends in the Spring.

Autumn Allotment Crops
As ever - one of the main jobs today was clearing weeds. I have a number of beds that need clearing for Autumn sowing. But I'm a great believer in prioritisation - so today I focussed on my Autumn and Winter Crops.

Clearing the other beds can come later - I've got carrots, spinach, cabbages and leeks that I hope to be harvesting between now and Christmas - and beyond.

Winter Cabbages
Once I'd weeded my Winter cabbages they were looking pretty good.

I've been growing them under a net cloche to protect them from pests.

The threat from butterflies and caterpillars has now passed. But our perennial allotment pests - bunny rabbits - remain.

So the cabbages are now safely back under cover.

Allotment Crops - Leeks
My leeks were not looking so good.

Partly due to my neglect - I haven't done anything since they went into the ground in June.

They were choked with weeds - mainly chickweed - and soaking wet - as the weeds were blocking airflow through the crop.

Allotment Crops - Leeks
Once weeded - they were still looking a bit sorry for themselves - and like spring onions in size.

But I firmed them back into the soil and replaced the cloche - hopefully they will dry out and grow on.

As ever - we will see.

Autumn Crops
Finally I gathered in my crops for the day. The last of the cucumbers and the first of the Autumn carrots.

Plus some Pumpkins - which I'd hoped to grown on through October to Halloween. But when I tried weeding - they all just fell off the plant - so ready for harvest.