Sunday, 26 August 2012

Planes, plans and potatoes

We spent a few hours working on the plot this afternoon, it actually got pretty warm. There were lots of fellow plot-holders on site today too so there were plenty of reasons for breaks :-)
We had our own air show while we were on the site. Didn't get any photos but it was great to see the red arrows, 2 spitfires and a hercules. It seems they were flying back from an airshow near Cambridge.

Jamie finished digging out the grass on Plot8. We've decided that we'll put our strawberry bed in there, near the rhubarb - straight across where we were going to move the seating. So the bench can (probably) stay where it is - unless we definitely get another (at least) 4 years on the site in which case I want a pond and then the bench will need to be near that - but that can be decided on next year...
Anyway, where was I? So, the strawberries... we only want 8 plants as we know Geoff's did brilliantly this year and grew big bushy plants which will fill the space we've planned for them. I potted 8 of Geoff's runners - they're still attached to his plants and secured with wire until they've rooted.
We're going to plant them like Geoff's done - on that weed suppressant that you can see in the picture above.

I cut off the tops of the original broad bean plants which have succombed badly to chocolate spot - we leave the roots in the ground to add nutrients to the soil - mainly nitrogen. There's also a chance that we may get a further crop from them, but it's a bit late now really.
We got a whole bagful of dead-heads from the calendula! And riddled a bagful of lovely compost from our green bin which is now half-full of all the broad bean tops - we'll add some cardboard to that tomorrow.
Jamie found these two snails mating. Didn't have the heart to split them up but sent them to do their love-making elsewhere!
We pulled some potatoes, one of each plant:
  • Orla - top left. This was one of the few Orla plants which actually survived this year. Disappointing though as there were only 3 reasonable tubers.
  • Kestrel - top right. This had quite a few tubers, including a giant but one of the tubers had either slug damage or blight on it. A couple have deep ridges where they've grown against stones, but the potato should be alright for cooking.
  • Chopin - bottom. Produced 7 even-sized tubers. The chopins have definitely been my favourites this year. There are a few small holes in some of them but generally they come out of the ground looking lovely and smooth with few blemishes.
We also got some more french beans and the last few broad beans from the original plants - not sure if they'll be edible.

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Belinda