Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Springtime Catch-up!

This time of the year all plants on the allotment, in the garden and in nature whizz along.  I just love the vibrant zingy greens of tree leaf, and new grass and perennials; the new salad leaves; and the sharp splashes of bright pinks, purples, and yellows from budding roses, alliums, and the later tulips. Not to mention my favourite clematises (is that the correct plural?) - that's the ones that haven't been pinched off the plot that is...another story!

New lettuce and turnips zooming along in the greenhouse

 I love alliums!

The bursting buds are just as good as the open flowers
And the first roses are unfurling

Plenty of fruit to come too: redcurrants
The veggies are also coming on. Last year's chard and spinach is still producing well and we've had our first really good picking of mustardy salad leaves.

Mustardy salad leaves, with carrots, radishes and more parsley to come: growing in the old water tank, away from slug and snail

The sweet peas and peas got a trifle nibbled (aka eaten to the ground) by slugs and snails. I have now trialled wool pellets alongside the existing plastic bottle cuffs with jagged tops and copper bands to keep the voracious molluscs off. The wool seems to be proving that final bit of protection in a slug and snail-full year so far. Both types of peas are re-sprouting now.

I've also been busy sowing. I stagger this over the season, little and often, cos with ME you get overwhelmingly knackered and ill from doing too much. I'm feeling more under par than usual at the moment so the pattern is to totter off my bed of knackeredness, fill up a pot or two with soil (all kept handy by the back door) bung in a few seeds, put 'em on the windowsill and hey presto!  ....Even more seedlings to anticipate potting up- with help of

  Oh and by the way we've had more new life on the plot: four of the dearest robin fledglings from a neat nest in the wiggly hazel- they kept that very quiet til the babies were up and flying!

Happy Spring!


  1. I love the fresh green of spring. We are trying garlic spray against slugs and snails - will it work?

  2. Hi Sue! I have heard good things from plotholders re garlic spray. The wool pellets I tried on your recommendation- so far so good!

  3. Didn't realise the nest in the hazel had chicks in it!

  4. I'm sure it's where the robins came from as I saw a baby hopping about close to it with mum or dad encouraging it. L also saw a wren close to it, but I think the nest would be too big for a wren.

  5. I was not lucky with the compost this year and still haven't been able to harvest any lettuce:( I had a lovely crop of radishes though:) the tomatoe seedlings are looking good:)

  6. My tomatoes are still quite small Aga- but I'm sure they will catch up! I love radishes!

  7. Hi Jill, the days seem to go much faster than normal at this time of year! I also say clematises in plural, and I have looked it up, you are allowed to say that :-) Your photos are looking zingy green and fresh, I love alliums too, but they didn’t like the last, very wet winter. Not many flowers this year so I have got them all dug up and will start afresh this autumn with new bulbs. They were not in a good place anyway. Good to hear your veg garden is coming along, I have lots of lettuce already but they all got greenflies! I’m not sure what to do with that because I didn’t have any greenflies on the lettuce last year, but I grew a different variety last year – maybe that makes a difference? I can’t just spray with the soy spray I use on my roses, that would make it taste horrible, so not sure now…but for now the cut-and-come-again lettuce is just growing like mad :-)

  8. Sorry for not replying earlier Helene! Thanks for your comments! I agree, the alliums weren't as good as last year. Hope your lettuces have survived the aphid onslaught.... Maybe a garlic spray would be just like adding a salad dressing?! My cut and come again mustardy mix is about the only edible thing really thriving! J