Not that much to report from the allotment lately, we’re actually on top of things for once. After a 2 week staycation with both of us down there working, there’s really little to do now but the occasional whip round with the hoe and a harvest of goodies. I know full well that the situation could easily change if I become to complacent and let things slide, it’s amazing how quickly nature can take back control of your plot while your back is turned, so I won’t be too smug about it.
My victoria plums have been delicious. I ate as many as I could stomach fresh from the tree, and the rest have gone into the freezer ready and waiting for a crumble topping when the fancy takes me.
I’m also drowning in blackberries and runner beans. The runner beans aren’t too much of a problem, as I actually want to save most of them for the white butter beans within (they’re a particular white bean variety) so I’m happy to leave a lot of them to fatten up on the plants. But my freezer is becoming very full of blackberries, and they’re literally dropping to the ground each time I knock the stems. If you like blackberries and want to grow them at home, I really recommend Oregon Thornless, just make sure you have plenty of space for it! I have to keep hacking mine back to keep it under control.
We’ve also been digging up lots of potatoes, and I’m happy to report there’s no eelworm damage so far this year. Last years maincrop (Cara) were riddled with tiny holes, that don’t look much from the outside, but then when you slice into the potato you realise it’s virtually hollow. I’ve grown Kestrel this year (pictured above) which are resistant to the pest, and even though I’ve seen one or two eelworms when digging them up, the potatoes haven’t been touched. Phew. I’ve yet to dig up my Valour potatoes though, so we’ll see how they have faired. I’ve also grown some french Ratte potaotes which faired well through the dry spring weather and are very tasty.
My courgettes, a variety which is meant to be resistant to powdery mildew, are currently covered all over with the worst mildew ever! So they’re not producing fruit quite so fast, but that’s okay with me. I’ve heard that spraying mildew with a watery milk solution can help, so I might try that.
Six rows of leeks have been planted, and I’ve just put my pre-order in for autumn planting onion sets and garlic, though they won’t go in until Oct/Nov. It’ll be here before you know it!