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Greenhouse Success

Last week I stupidly said the summer had started, well maybe it had for some parts of the country but we didn’t get out of first gear here. Wednesday was a particular disappointment, the BBC assured us we were having a sunny day but the low cloud was down and you couldn’t see 30 yards until the evening.

I did get a little done on the plot but nothing like what I hoped for. The raised bed which I cleared of the first earlies is still awaiting planting up for example. I cleared the shallots which has gained me some more growing space.

The shallots haven’t done so well this year, some bolted and some just failed to grow much. Still, we have a few so I’ve probably broken even on the cost of seed versus the cost of buying them in the shop.

The second early potatoes are ready for harvest now, just as soon as we get a nice day. I think they’ll be good but you never know with potatoes until you lift them.

Potato Blight

There’s a lot of people suffering with blight this year. The weather conditions are perfect for blight, humid and warm. Lucky for us, we have nobody else growing potatoes nearby which reduces our chances of catching blight as there are less spores floating in the air. I think the sheer amount of rain would wash them from the sky anyway.

In the Greenhouse

The one real success this year is the greenhouse. The tomatoes are doing very well but we could do some sun to ripen them up. I’ve cordon tomatoes along the wall and bush tomatoes in large ‘grow-bags’ down the centre. I think I’ve over-crowded the house (easy to do) as the bush tomatoes are filling the path!

The peppers, both sweet and chilli, are forming now. I’ve grown peppers in a greenhouse border in the past as well as pots and I still can’t decide which is best. The borders tend to become larger plants but the pots seem to start producing earlier. Of course, this isn’t a proper comparison where I’d grow the same varieties in both ways in the same house. Just intuition.

The cucumbers are brilliant. I hate to sound boastful, but these are super. We’ve three types – all of which beat anything you can buy in the shops hands down. The Carmen are a smooth skinned variety, large nicely-shaped fruits that have a crispness to them.

The Burpless Tasty Green are a prickly type, good flavour but different to Carmen. More meaty. Finally I’ve some Romanian cucumbers from seed given to me by a forum member a few years ago. Another prickly type with small fruits about 4″ long. These are our favourite in a salad, not just dense but positively sweet.

I suppose I should mention a certain sporting event going on in the capital. I’m not a great sports fan but this is something rather special for the country. Just a bit of a disappointment that allotments didn’t get a look in at the opening ceremony – especially since an allotment site was displaced by the construction. Still, a lot better than I feared when I heard the chap who made Trainspotting was directing things!

Posted in Allotment Garden Diary

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