Last weekend was a bit of a disaster. I was taken ill on Friday night and despite the spirit being willing, the flesh was weak. So back to bed mid-morning Saturday from which I didn’t arise until the evening. About Tuesday before I began to feel human again and by then the weather was hardly inviting. Still, managed to get a lot of the book we’re working on (Easy Jams, Chutneys & Preserves) done this week so I suppose it wasn’t all bad.
Sunday we lost an hour with the clocks changing, so a slight sense of unreality – it always takes my body clock a week to adjust. Still not as bad as the time I got it backwards when the clocks went back. I was working in London and staying in a hotel. The plan was to breakfast at 8.00am and be at the office for 9.00am. So down to a very, very quiet dining room where eventually the night porter showed up to explain it was actually 5.45am. Still, we had bacon & eggs and I was very much first in to work that day.
Anyway, enough of all that. The sun was shining and it was more like a summer’s day than a spring day. Down at the allotment everyone seemed to have had the same idea, even the car park was full. It’s really nice seeing it so busy, especially when I think back to when I first got the plot. Then it was rare for there to be anyone on except me and Larry. I do rather enjoy having the site to myself though, which happens more in the week than at weekends.
Planting New Potatoes
I planted three well chitted seed potatoes (See growing potatoes) (var. swift) in the raised bed coldframe. Its twin wall polycarbonate material is pretty good at holding the warmth in, especially as we’re getting some very sharp frosts. Hopefully this will bring them along earlier and safely with the soil being a few degrees warmer. Quite a few people on the site have got their potatoes in now but you have to watch out for frosts. A frost will kill the foliage so if your potatoes are showing, earth them up or fleece them.
Next task was to plant some onion sets. Normally I grow my onions from seed. Growing onions from seed is cheaper, there’s more choice of varieties and I feel they keep better. With onions and their sensitivity to the day length you need to get them going early and this year I’m running late so it’s sets.
Sets are just little bulbs so they do have a head start on seeds and this way I’ll still get a crop. (See Growing onions from sets) I’d got Stuttgarter a white onion and Red Baron, red of course. Once planted I covered them with horticultural fleece. Not so much as to keep them warm as to stop those pigeons from pulling them up.
The back is still playing up, so walked home like a 90 year old looking for his zimmer frame where more Iboprofen were washed down with tea.