Slow progress

486 We managed an hour at the allotment today before getting rained off – this (rubbish!) photo shows that we’ve finished what will be the first bed, and have marked out where the next one starts. We thought it would make life a bit easier to have some narrow paths at intervals throughout so that we can get through to water and (hopefully!) harvest without walking over everything.

We were away last weekend at a wedding down south so haven’t done anything here for a couple of weeks. Everyone else has been digging away so we are playing catch-up! We realised that, even just digging one spade’s length down, we were bringing up subsoil, so now we are probably only digging down half a spade’s length, which will hopefully mean that it gets done a bit quicker!

Tomorrow, if the weather isn’t too wet (forecast isn’t great, morning is a bit better though) we’ll do another couple of hours. I must remember this time to take a tub down so that we can confine the growing broken glass collection, and a bin bag for the random bits and bobs of crap we dig up. We haven’t found any treasure yet – so far it’s mainly broken glass (apparently last year a greenhouse had a bit of a rough time at the hands of the wind) and bits of old china mugs, plus odd nails, random unidentifiable metal objects, and quite a few plastic markers. At least the old carpet is all up now (I hope!).

We also dug up a few potatoes that hadn’t been harvested, so at least we know not to plant spuds in the bottom left hand corner (along with not planting onions on the right hand side a bit further towards the middle of the plot – I dug up a couple of those a few weeks ago!). The spuds we bought a couple of weeks ago are happily chitting away – well 3 out of the 4 varieties are anyway, and the other one (pink fir apple – a salad variety) apparently doesn’t chit that well but still works when in the ground, so I’m not worried about that and will plant it with all the others.

I also want to set a few seeds this weekend to start off indoors. The only ones that I need to do this early are quinoa (which I’m expecting not to work, but fancy having a try) and brussels. I forgot to include in the last update that a few weeks back someone from the allotments donated some rooted blackcurrant bush cuttings, so I nabbed one of those and it is now potted up by the back door till we’re ready to plant it on the plot.

I also managed a bit of planting in the front garden today (whilst getting wet). I bought another spade at the garden centre this morning (finally using the garden centre vouchers I got as a leaving present from my last job, in February last year!) and some seed compost, and had really good intentions about not getting distracted and buying anything else. However, knowing where good intentions lead (!) I also came out with a pyracanthus and a couple of alpines (a sedum and another one I can’t remember the name of). So they’re now all planted up, along with a stray bit of forget-me-not which was growing in the gap between a couple of paving slabs but I’ve now transplanted to next to the rose bush.