Subscribe with Bloglines At last I've got my plot!: April 2006

Saturday, April 29, 2006

This is the picture I couldn't seem to load properly yesterday. It is my bean beans in it yet ...they are coming along in the tunnel. It is too early for them to go out yet anyway.
On the LH side of the bed is the bean net support with sweet peas growing up it. I like to grow sweet peas on the same frame as the beans as I like to smell them when I tend the beans. The beans will go in between the peas, on the RH side of the netting as we look at it. I hope that by putting the net at an angle like this the beans will hang inside and be easy to see....that's the theory.
The reason for my putting the bean bed here so close to the tunnel is for the shading it will give at the sunniest time of the year. It wont completely shade it out, but will help.....and it blocks out the view of the tunnel from the living room. I love my tunnel but it isn't really pretty. I saw some wonderful French iron framed greenhouses at Chelsea the only time I went (four years ago I think). They were beautiful....a sort of light green colour that really looks good in the garden.
In the middle of the bed you can see my slug pubs from Lidl a year or two ago.
On the right, climbing up the strings are peas...Magnum Bonum. My neighbour gave me some seeds and said they climb quite high...hence the strings.
This morning I have put in 8 different salads....lettuce, rocket, mizuna etc in plate sized circles behind and between the peas. I am hoping the shade of the sweet peas and beans will mean we wont lose the lettuces to the sun!!
Along the edge I have sown some Calendula...Indian Prince....recommended by Sarah Raven. I like to see Marigolds in the veggie garden, they are edible as well as being pretty and they act as companions to so many different veg.
I have left space under each support pole for a climbing courgette. I appreciate that they wont climb...per se...and that I will have to help them by tying them up.

I also planted seeds of my pumpkins for the plot....Ghost Rider. They will go in holes in black plastic when they go out in the plot.

From today onwards we have visitors so I wont be doing much to write about for the next week.....see you all after that!

As promised I've taken some photos of the current state of the kitchen garden at home. On the right you can see the deep beds. They are all netted once planted as we have three cats that will sit on them and use them as toilets!
Some of the beds are still acting as holding beds for the flowering plants that were in part of the plot before I made the deep beds, and are still waiting to be moved one to the flower beds which I am still waiting to find time to make!
In the first bed on the LH side, almost out of the picture , are my broad beans. Not very big yet, but we anticipate a good crop.
The next bed has the onion sets, shallots and garlic. . The next has cabbages and cauliflowers. There is room in this bed for two climbing courgettes which are coming on in the tunnel.
The far right bed has purple sprouting, and brussels so far. It is also waiting for some courgettes. The middle one this side has rows of carrots, sp onions, beetroot and radish. The near bed has some rows of french beans only just one in yesterday and some rows of cut flower seeds which are up but not thinned yet.

This picture is of my herb bed. I dug out the further bit this afternoon ready for some new thyme and mint plants I have ordered from T&M.

This shows how well my courgettes and squash plants are doing in their paper pots. I made these from newspaper following the ideas shown in Wizers blog.

Here you can see the state of my tunnel beds now. The tomatoes are very healthy, the cucumbers not so happy. They are growing but just don't seem to be thriving. The strawberries are flowering profusely. And the peppers and aubergines in the paper pots are very happy too. The cut and come again lettuce is also growing so we should soon have some to eat.

I've been trying for hours to sort out the phots on this no avail! I have another one whch I'll do on a separate entry!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

A real dashing about day as the dog went to the vets for spaying. I needed to be here for the phone, then when she got back I couldn't leave her. So I did the back garden instead.

I spent the morning preparing the last two deep beds ready for veg. The soil in them was very as I tickled the soil up with my long handled hand fork I threw all the stones I found onto the paths between the beds.

Then on the way to the Vets I went via the garden centre for nets, and black plastic sheets. Then to the builders yard for three 2"x"2 poles to make my bean frame. I am setting them in some old metposts to make them solid. I also bought some of that plastic bean and pea net. It is so cheap I can throw it away at the end of the season if I can't be bothered to clean it of the bines. I probably will clean it though....can't bear waste! I will staple it to the 2x2 posts. I'm not sure what I will support the net along the top with yet. I do have some metal poles that I could fix to the posts, or I might use some old washing line. I intend to grow sweet peas up the framework with the beans...for pleasure!

I also buried some seep hose into the long bean bed. This runs from one of the water butts that harvests the rainwater from the back roof of the house. Hopefully that will save me a lot of carting of watering cans! I really didn't water my beans enough last year and blame that for my iffy harvest!

I also sowed the pomegranate seeds I bought at Wisley last week. I sowed 12 hoping for one plant!!!

Tomorrow DH is out all day so I can't leave my sad little it'll be Friday before I get to the plot again. I'm running out of time for putting in my spuds......but I'll still put them in no matter how late it gets. They'll help break up the ground and then it'll get a good digging in the autumn.

My tomato plants that I put into the ring culture pots in the beds in the tunnel on Tuesday seem to have doubled in size overnight!! They are beautifully sturdy and look healthy. Hopefully they will be good croppers. I have three plants of Yellow Pear, three Sungold, and three Gartenperle, all in the tunnel, and three Gardener's Delight for outside. They'll be in pots for a while yet as even here on the IOW we might get chilly nights for some time yet.

Tomorrow I'll do some photos of the tunnel and the garden, then Friday I'll update with photos of the plot.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Hours at the plot so far.....33.

Went to put in the maincrop under the black plastic ridges. Sorry photos, forgot the camera again! I was pleased to see that the plastic had not blown had not moved at all. I'm not sure that it will stay put now though as all the holes I cut in order to put the spuds in allow the wind to get in too! Two rows done, probably 6 more to go. I seem to get 11 seed potatoes into each row. I need more plastic sheets before I do the next plastic covered bed.
I also hoed the onions, shallots and the early potatoes. The soil had panned in the heavy rain, but I had to leave it until I could see where everything is. Now that everything is showing through, I was able to loosen the soil, and did a fair job of hoeing the weeds. I'll do it better in a few days when I take my swoe down there.....the hoe that the plotters have in their shed, which they say I can borrow, is not very easy to use properly....whereas I am a dab hand with the swoe. I also like to use a very long handled hand fork, like a forked hoe, for weeding as it enables me to loosen the ground to 3 inches deep and then pull out the weeds by hand. As the plot is a fair slope it makes sense to get the rain into the ground before it has a chance to think of running off!!!
Earlier in the week I did a lot of work in the polytunnel. The tomatoes are now into their ring culture pots (all except three). The courgettes and squashes had germinated and most are now in paper pots in the greenhouse.
I sowed a lot of chamomile lawn seeds in plugs....49 of them. I'm hoping eventually to establish lots of chamomile in the pathways between the deep beds to save mowing and strimming the spaces.
My blueberry plants, three of them, arrived this morning from the Times offer. They are about a foot tall....I'm pleased with them. I will grow them to maturity in pots rather than the garden because our soil here is not light enough for them. I will have to buy some huge pots eventually, but at the moment they are in 5" pots so they have a lot of sizes to go through between now and then!
Weather permitting I should get two more rows done tomorrow.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Hours at the plot so far.....31
Today is beautiful weather so I went to start on the black plastic lazy beds for the maincrop. I don't have enough time to dig the rest of the plot properly this spring before putting in the maincrop so I have decided to do the not dug yet half of the plot with this method.
Basically I marked 28" strips; cut the turves from the outer 7" of the strip leaving 14" intact in the middle; then turned the turves in on the undug bit. The whole row is then covered in black plastic, and the potatoes planted through it. It is not as heavy work as fully digging the plot....but nor is it easy. I am really bushed now. Tomorrow, weather permitting I will plant the two rows I've prepared today, then do the next two rows ....etc. I think I need 8 more rows!!!

I pulled a load of rhubarb because the plot holders haven't touched it and it is now beginning to flower. I pulled off the flower heads and hope that this will mean the crop life is extended a bit.....! Now I have armfuls of the stuff to cook and freeze....!

Sorry....I forgot to take my camera! permitting, although they give rain!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Today was spent catching up after being away from home for two days. Shopping and clearing up! Then I did some front garden weeding, and killed the dandelions on the lawn with something noxious but biodegradable....hopefully!
This afternoon I spent hours on my veggie deep beds at home. I've planted caulis, cabbages, two types, and prepared the bed for Brussels sprouts and broccoli. I also treated all the veg already planted with some of the blended organic manure that is available at the moment at 3 bags for £10 at my local garden centre.
Tomorrow afternoon I'll head for the plot and start on the lazy beds for the maincrop spuds. And I'll start earthing up the already planted earlies that are beginning to peep through the soil.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Here I am ....back from Kent!
When I got in I walked the dogs and they led me down through the allotments....where I spotted my spuds coming through!!!!!! How did they know? I looked back to see when they went in.....29th March. I don't know whether that is good or bad but I'm pleased. Tomorrow I'll make sure the tops are earthed over because we still can't guarantee no frosts.....!
I also noticed that the real holders of my plot had used a poison on the grass path. Fortunately they have left my bit alone!!!!! But the path looks very ugly now....picture tomorrow weather permitting!
Went to Wisley on my way home to check out their shop and get some more (!!!!!) books. My favourite is one on French Vegetable Gardens. It is a delight.....full of pictures of French veg gardens and allotments......and as you know from my previous posts these are one of my obsessions. The book is very inspiring!!!!
Couldn't find it on Amazon UK.....!
Got some other books which I'll mention later....and some seeds, dahlia tubers, gladioli bulbs, etc. Had a bit of a spend up!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Hours at the plot so far....29 !
After spending the morning mowing the front and back lawns....a) because they desperately needed it, and b) because I needed some grass cuttings for planting my potatoes, I went to the plot this afternoon to plant my second earlies...Kestrel. Four rows! There was another plotter there who lent me a potato a bulb planter on a long stem....! It made the job so easy! Apparently everyone uses it!
Then I tidied up the compost area by moving the pile of weeds I am producing by the plot-clearing-digging that I am doing at the moment, into the new bay DH made last Saturday. It all looks much tidier up there now.
I am away in Kent for two days visiting my mother, so will not be at the plot again until Friday. Then I need to start preparing the ground for the main crop. I am going to do these under plastic using the method advocated on the Allotment DVD. There is a certain amount of digging involved in the "lazy bed" system. Basically you lay a one foot width of cardboard along a row, cover it with manure, cut the turves from either side, turn them over onto the manure, then cover the whole in plastic. After this cut holes for the spuds at the usual planting distance, and push them down as far as you can.
No watering, no earthing up..can't be bad. Then this autumn I will give it a proper dig ready for next year.
This afternoon I spent a while in the tunnel watering and doing other general maintenance. Now I've had it! Goodnight!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

So....I had my sit down and read a load of blogs.....and suddenly realised that I ought to be sowing my courgettes and squashes. So I just did them in the greenhouse and have put them into the little electric propagators in my sun room....which is north facing....LOL!
I've sown
Squash Pink Banana....a climbing squash I'm really looking forward to eating
Courgette Tomboncino...a climbing courgette
Courgette Rugosa Friulana....a really warty yellow courgette from Italy
Courgette Soleil....a yellow courgette
Squash Blue Ballet
Courgette Lungo Bianco
Squash Patty Pan, Custard white
Courgette Jemmer...another yellow courgette
Butternut Squash
Spaghetti Squash.
I've sown three seeds of each so I'll have some to give away. I don't want more than one of some of them.
Now its a question of "Watch this space!"

Monday, April 17, 2006

Hours at the plot so far...27 !

The sun was shining this morning, so we both went to the plot. Me to dig, DH to sort out the compost heap. He has bodged up a huge double one from old pallets and some fence panels we had lying around. He apologised that it didn't look very pretty.....but I said it was ok as it is, after all, an allotment! I now have to fork the piles of weeds I'm digging out of the plot into one of them, and sieve the old compost made by the previous plotters. Later!!!

I dug two very deep rows across the plot. I've now done enough to be able to plant my second early potatoes in there tomorrow.

At home, in the deep beds, I've planted out 25 broad bean plants that I started indoors. They have been hardening off since Saturday, and look very sturdy.
I sowed a row of parsnips, transplanted some modules of beetroot, carrots, leeks, onions, mangetout and peas. Then I hoed the onion sets and garlic and shallots so that all looks tidy and professional. I should really be taking advantage of the sun and getting on a bit more but I've just walked the dogs miles and need a sit with a cuppa! I might go back down the allotment after dinner for an hour as it looks like staying fine.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Hours at plot so far.....25 1/2 !

Spent an hour today digging two more widths of the plot. The picture is of the rocks that are sitting alongside the path. For reference purposes the left hand one is over two feet long!
I was wondering why they were there and found out today!!!! As I was digging parallel to the stones I kept meeting resistance to the spade and fork. The soil was barely a half spit deep in many places...I kept hitting huge slabs of yellow stone. I bent the fork trying to lift gave up on that. I realised that that is why the rocks have been left a warning! I will have to build up the soil in that area over time. meanwhile I'll beware!

The pink blob, as you will have guessed, is my finger. You wouldn't think I'm quite an accomplished photographer!
This photo shows my sweet potato trial....see previous post on this. It has many eyes so I hope they will sprout. I didn't cover them with water....just halfway up the hope that is right! This experiment promises to be fun!!!

I'm not sure when I'll be "plotting" next as we have visitors this weekend......perhaps Monday.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Hours at plot so far....24 1/2.
Managed to do an hour and a half this afternoon. No point taking a photo as it looks no different!!!

Did some potting on in the tunnel this morning, and moving stuff outside to harden off a bit....and back in this afternoon.

The heavens opened this afternoon....I was struggling to find a window to walk the dogs even. gardening of any kind! But tomorrow promises to be ok.......we'll see!

I did watch to see if the gutters were working on the tunnel.....Bingo!

Dentist tomorrow morning....then hopefully an afternoon at the plot! Metcheck gives a good forecast. Watching the rainfall animation on Metcheck shows what an awful day we have had, but now the UK is almost clear of rain! Temp should not go below 4deg C...good!

And I almost forgot....I asked a friend in the US (Arkansas) who has had success growing sweet potatoes, how to do it.....and here are her very specific instructions.......

"You buy sweet potatoes from the grocery store and slice them in half, lengthways, placing the skin/eyes side down in enough water to half cover the potato. The new 'eye's have to be in the water to sprout.
Once sprouted, place them in potting soil in a tray box for them to finish growing sprouts with roots, Then you gently break each plant off of the mother potato plant and plant in regular garden plot. It takes several weeks to do this. Each sweet potato should make a dozen, or more, plants depending on how many eyes they have to begin with. I think I planted 2 whole rows off of 6 potatoes last year.
Be sure to let the new plants grow on the mother potato until they are big enough to safely separate and grow on their own. I usually wait until they are at least 6 inches tall, but did plant a few smaller ones when I was running low at the last row and wanted to get the rows finished.
I originally planted sweet potatoes that were already beginning to sprout in some garden potting soil, but they took a long time to grow big enough sprouts to transplant. A lady at Wal Mart told me yesterday that she always put hers in water to sprout so that's how I'm going to do mine this year.
Of course, if you can buy some older sweet potatoes that's already starting to sprout, they'll work much faster. They sure taste good fresh from the garden. The ones that only made long finger-like potatoes and didn't fill out like the larger ones, I scrubbed and steamed them with skins on in my veggie steamer and peeled them just before I ate them. I don't care for the skins.
You'll have to try your hand at growing sprouts and transplanting them in your garden this year. They're really easy to tend to and we didn't have a problem with the bugs as we do with white potatoes.
BTW, if you have really good luck with sprouting them, you'll probably find someone who would love to have some for their garden but didn't know how to get them started."

So....I am going to try that tomorrow!

Monday, April 10, 2006

Hours at plot since Day 1.....23.
I went for two hours today.....just digging. Four widths of the plot.
As a picture would just be a virtual repeat of previous pictures I decided to take some photos of the other plots for your entertainment. This one draws lots of comments from other plotters!!!!!

It is the one just below my half plot. I haven't seen anyone there yet....perhaps they are waiting for the holiday weekend.
At the other end of the spectrum is this little one on the right.....! The lady who has it has no garden at home and therefore grows flowers and veg on her plot. She gets teased a bit by other plotters but I think they like having her tidy plot as a neighbour; and she is witty....her flowerpot scarecrow has a winter jacket on. I'll take another picture of him when I see him sunbathing.

The plot holder of this tidy one has just acquired the one next to her on the left, and has begun to work her magic there too.

I'd really like mine to be twee like this, but I have a good enough garden at home, so my plot has to be more business like.

Got to walk the dogs now, then take them to the vets for Lulu's slimming club! She is almost at her target weight!!!!

Perhaps later I'll get a chance to do some back garden veg gardening!

Hours at the plot so far.....21!
I went late today as I was very busy in the back garden. Firstly I took some photos of the guttering I put up yesterday on the polytunnel. Here is the finished article on the front.

And here is a close up to show how I have bridged the gap between the plastic cover curves and the straight gutter.
And here is a picture of the back of the tunnel where I have re-used the gutter I had on the front last year but which has bent out of shape. I think it will do the job....and we don't have to look at it!

(Someone suggested I do a link to Solar goes! )

Here is a picture of the inside as I left it yesterday.....!
And after an hours work...tidying, potting up, filling watering cans, putting out the brassicas to start looked like this!
The first bed on the left (mostly out of shot) has the spinach from last autumn, some newly planted peas, and a couple of o0dd purple sprouting from last year.
The second bed has 3 ring pots waiting for tomatoes. A tray of potatoes chitting. And some trays of paper pots and others with sweet peas, peppers, comfrey, and other things. At the front of the bed are some strawberry plants....already flowering.
The next bed was tomatoes last year so I have cucumbers and a melon in the ring pots. In front of them are some leaf lettuce, a courgette and some beetroot, as well as more strawberries.
The furthest bed has ring pots ready for tomatoes, strawberries, and some trays of Cara....chitting.
The green dustbin holds potting compost.

On the bench side of the tunnel there is the Ken Muir strawberry arrangement. Behind that but not really visible is an orange container with worm liquid in from my is wonderful fertiliser. At the far end of the bench is the little mini greenhouse which I shut down if there is a frost forecast as the tunnel is not as warm as a greenhouse. I have my tomato plants in there...also some petunias and other flowers

The last picture shows some little yellow spiders that have built a web on my small watering can. I'm not sure if they are pests..I need to look them up! They are absolutely probably mites!

I finally went to the plot after walking the dogs (DH still dying with his cold!) but was chased home by the rain after half an hour. There were a lot of other people up there when I the time I left I was the only one there! The rain did a good job of clearing us!

Tomorrow promises to be fair so I'm going to go there early!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

I've worked myself to a standstill the tunnel and the back garden....not at the plot though, perhaps tomorrow!
I decided I had to get the guttering on the tunnel finished before we get more rain. This involved bridging the gap between plastic cover and gutter on the front, and attaching the old guttering to the back of the tunnel, and bridging that gap too. I also had to clean out the spare water butt for the back gutter. (I can't direct both lots of gutter to one butt because it would mean taking a pipe across a doorway.) It was full of nasty bits from a Blackthorn bush that was in our garden. DH cut it down because it was where we wanted the gate to the back garden.....why he put the bits in the water butt beats me. I now have scratches to show for it! Anyway, the guttering I need some rain to fill both butts.
I also planted the cucumber (2) and melon plants in the tunnel borders, surrounded with fleece to ensure they don't chill. Also I put out some leaf lettuce into the tunnel beds, also beetroot that I started in small modules.
The sweet pea jiffy sevens were all growing together so I put each one in a toilet roll inner tube with more compost....hopefully that will do for them until I can plant them in my runner bean bed to grow up the framework with the beans. And the peppers and aubergines were outgrowing their small modules so I put them into 3" pots.
Tomorrow I need to tidy up in the polytunnel as I was so clapped, and had to walk the dogs before I collapsed. There is stuff everywhere.
I walked the dogs through the allotments, and saw that the lady whose plot I share has been doing her bit. It looks really good....half done! There were also signs that they had had the BBQ out!
The weather was glorious all day, and I hope tomorrow will be the same. I'll do another 3 rows of digging if I can.
Also I will take some more photos....too tired to bother today.
BTW thanks to Greenmantle I have mastered the posting of the links....see right...and now my "favourite" blogs are listed here. If I have forgotten any I will do them in a day or two (I already noticed one or two I have "Allotment Lady", and "My Life and Times" are just two of them.)

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Didn't make it to the plot today. I had visitors all day, so even though it was sunny this morning for a while there was no chance of going. We have lots of friends and relatives booked in for the next two months, so I'll have lots of days when I can't garden. However, part of the reason for growing the veg is to feed our visitors so I must make the effort. They'll keep coming if I feed them well!
I did forget to mention yesterday that when I was weeding I found a bit of the dreaded Mare's Tail weed. I had been wondering what the wiry twisty brown roots were, then I found one with a kind of green cone on it. I was suspicious about it so I asked one of the other plotters and he said it was the dreaded Mare's Tail! So it looks like I'll be doing a lot of hoeing this year....and infinitum!
Tomorrow doesn't look favourable weatherwise....but I wont prejudge....just plan to go plotting in the afternoon and see what happens. My DH has a nasty cold so we wont get the compost heaps organised yet.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Hours so far at the plot.....20 1/2
At last....the weather and the opportunity were right for a plot morning! DH needed me back by 11.15am, but I managed to dig three more widths of the plot. This bit was dug last year judging by the lack of weeds.....just grass. So it wasn't too bad.
The sun was shining, there was hardly any wind, the seagulls were shrieking, the thousands of ducks at the Wildlife Encounter across the valley were bellyaching for their food, a small plane was circling slowly and doing loop-de-loops.....! All in all a lovely morning! And I was bare armed too.

The elderly chap (50 years of plotting) next but two was grumbling about badger damage to some of his veg. I don't suppose they would be interested in spuds.....hope not. He said "Woe betide anyone who wants to have sweetcorn up here this year." Apparently they are very partial.

As I had to be at home this afternoon, for the dogs, I have mowed the back lawn....first time this year so not too bad....and it wasn't horrendously long either. Now I have a full composter....great!

One of the "old boys" at the plot this morning said he understood from yesterday's Daily Mail that hosepipes will still be permitted on allotments. I'll have to research that to see if it is true. We have a hosepipe ban already here on the IOW...and I understood from someone else that that even includes using a hosepipe for emptying "greywater" from a bath onto your garden. So it would probably apply then to my hoses that link my water butts with my greenhouse and deep bed irrigation.....even though they will only transport my rainwater harvest.

(NB I have just googled and found this.....

Next visit to the plot....hopefully....Saturday...although the weather is predicted to be rain! Oh dear! Perhaps it will be a polytunnel day instead....! I certainly have plenty to do in there too.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

No chance to go yesterday, or today. Getting withdrawal symptoms!!!!!!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Hours so far at the plot.....19.
I went for just a half hour today as everything else just conspired against me. I had to put in the last dozen earlies so that it was off my mind for the next 4 days whilst we have visitors. There is no way I'll get there again until Thursday, unless I really get ahead tomorrow afternoon and manage to do an hour and a half.....unlikely! The visitors don't come until the evening, but I'm nowhere near ready yet! Upstairs is done, and the shower room and downstairs guestroom, but the living areas are desperate for a hoovering, and floor washing, and dusting, and the glass doors all have dog nose marks on......! You get the picture. Plus cooking for them. Plus dog walking. I've worked to a standstill this evening, so now I get to read all the plot blogs! Bliss!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Yesterday was extremely frustrating. The weather was expected to be good, so I'd planned a full day gardening and plotting! It started very very windy, and intermittent rain. So I started in the back garden re-doing the gutter on the polytunnel. I set up the new square profile guttering (I'm going to re-use the other flimsy grey stuff on the back where it is not so windy) and it runs beautifully into the water butt. I cleaned all the old gluey tape from the plastic tunnel cover, and then tried to stick a new length of plastic to the cover. it is needed to bridge the gap between the plastic cover and the gutter. The wind was too much and the rain meant the surface was too wet to stick anything. So I gave up and did some inside jobs. (We are expecting visitors Sunday evening for4 days and the house is a tip...too much time spent digging!!!)

Then I walked the poor dogs miles. They had a very cooped up day Thursday and needed it. We walked through the allotments where I noticed that the area I'd planted with potatoes and the onion sets is now all panned by the rain! Hopefully it will dry a bit this afternoon (sun predicted again) and I can tickle it up a bit with the hoe. I want to put in the last row of earlies today.....we'll see!

When I got back from the walk I was so worn out that I couldn't face the allotment (anyway I'd established that it was too wet), raided the fridge and settled in knitting for the evening. I should have been ironing but was much too shattered. I think it was the wind!

I watched Gardening World. They were planting their earlies, second earlies AND maincrop all at the same time. I appreciate that it was for a "to chit or not to chit" trail, but still!!! I thought that Rachel de Thame was going to be back this year....I like her, but I also like Sarah Raven, and I was scared we'd lose her as she seems to stand in for Rachel....but I'm glad to say she was back! My husband goes on and on about the way she dresses (he's no picture so has no room to talk!!!!) but I love her with all her quirky ways. I love individuals!

When Alan Titchmarsh stopped doing GardeningWorld I really wanted Bob Flowerdew to take over. But I must say I like Monty. I'd like to see them use Bob a bit though.