Thursday, 16 April 2015

Taking Stock

It's been an eventful few days up at the allotment so I've not had a lot of time to write about it! After the freezing cold winds of the past few weeks, this week has seen us bathed in glorious sunlight and basking in balmy temperatures.

It really does feel like the allotment is starting to take shape. It's exhausting, hard work and really does take over your life but the rewards are many and it is deeply satisfying. It is also providing us with a better work out than we would ever get at a flashy, expensive gym.

In addition to the artichokes and strawberry plants which were already there (and have now been brought back from the brink) we now have three different types of asparagus, three different types of rhubarb and our first crop of potatoes all planted in the beds. It was hard going at times but these crops will hopefully pay dividends in the months and years ahead.

The Red Duke of York potatoes we have planted should have lovely red skins and be perfect for roasting. We have a batch of Pink Fir salad potatoes to go in next. I am particularly keen on the rhubarb which has long been a favourite of mine and something I grew up with. My grandmother had a thriving rhubarb patch at the bottom of her garden and her rhubarb pies and crumbles were legendary! As we now have rhubarb and strawberries next to each other, pots of rhubarb and strawberry jam also seem likely.

The asparagus, another luxury crop, will take some time to come to fruition but we are already salivating about all the things we can do with it. So far asparagus with a poached egg and hollandaise seems to be the front runner for our first meal with our own home grown produce!

We have also installed a "Hedgehog Hotel" and an insect box in the hope of attracting and also helping to preserve and nurture some of the local wildlife. As there is historic woodland just over the fence, we hope we can help do our bit.

Next up are the peas, beans and assorted seedlings which are slowly starting to make their presence felt. Hopefully we'll be able to plant them soon. As we're both going back to work soon, free time will be limited so we must crack on!

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