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NVS Meeting, Slugs and Onions

Not much to report really. Saturday was spent in Preston where the National Vegetable Society hold the executive meetings. As I run the website for the society, they asked me to go and report on progress. If you’ve not seen the site it has quite a lot of information including clips from the DVDs the society produces for show growers.

Got back around five and yes, it was raining so just quickly grabbed a lettuce and some spring onions for a salad. I’ve a few, that’s about two, red tomatoes although the plants in the greenhouse are loaded with green ones.

Sunday came and yes, more rain to start the day. Around lunchtime the sun appeared briefly but it was only teasing. Checked some cauliflowers in the coldframe at home and found a few had been eaten by slugs. They’re in the coldframe more to protect them from the pigeons than anything else so a little ironic that the slugs get them. Scattered some pellets in the pots and the frame. We live with three cats so we’re very careful using pellets but they don’t go inside the coldframe.

Walked down to the plots and watered the pots in greenhouses there. Cleared the onions from one of the deep beds on plot 29 putting half of them into the greenhouse to dry and the other half were taken home to dry in the greenhouse there.

There was not much I could do in the way of cultivation. The bottom of plot 5 is just a quagmire. It doesn’t really encourage you when the sky is leaden grey and spitting at you.

Returned home where Val had strung the onions that had dried out in the greenhouse to make room for the new ones. In the garden we have two sheds, a six by eight which is rotting at the base and the floor is in poor condition and a low roofed five by eight tacked onto the side that leaks badly.

I think I might bite the bullet and go for a new purpose made shed so we can keep our tools and store crops safely. I looked at the cost of buying wood to build a new shed and it may be more economical to buy a ready made one. There’s apparently a local firm that are very good and cheap.

Although this is turning out to be the worst summer and growing season that I can remember, we’re still going to produce at least 80% of our own vegetables. With a bit of luck, over 90%. Some things I’ve not succeeded in being self-sufficient in like peas and garlic but on the plus side, despite the rot, potatoes and onions will be fine.

Watching the news last night really brought home the scale of the disaster this summer has been. After Hull and Sheffield we now have Tewkesbury and Gloucestershire with Oxfordshire due to get it on Monday. Hundreds of thousands without clean tap water and electricity. I suspect their allotments and vegetable patches are pretty low on their priorities today.

Posted in Allotment Garden Diary

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