The Year Begins!
Yesterday was lovely weather here on the Isle of Wight and I snatched an hour and a half to start on some of the deep beds in my kitchen garden.
I dug up the last of the Xmas spuds (Charlotte.....planted last July). Four plants worth of spuds. A useful harvest of a quarter bucket. Not fantastic but enough to justify the experiment.
I also pulled the carrots (little round ones...Early French Frame) sown last July. These will be a welcome addition to our dinner tonight. They overwintered well.
There were beets too, and some Mooli radishes. I think they might be bullets now but I believe they stand longer than other radishes so I'll wait to pass judgement til after I have tried them at lunch today.
I tidied both beds and have left them til planting and sowing starts in earnest later in the Spring. I won't start too early as it usually disappoints.
On my afternoon dog walk I strolled through the allotments. There was one very keen plotter taking advantage of the sun to dig. My plot was too soggy but I will soon be able to get on with it. The weeds are beginning to appear so sowing time can't be far off.
My spuds (from Alan Romans) are chitting nicely on the windowsill and I'll put them in at the plot when the chits are an inch long and sturdy.
I also intend to do some in bags again to see if I can master that technique. DH wants me to give up my allotment and just concentrate on the kitchen garden here, but I don't really have enough room for spuds, or fruit, here and am loath to act too soon on his suggestions. If I can master the bag technique then I could have quite a few lined up along the alleyway round the house and satisfy my need to grow them here. We could also put the fruit bushes in with the flower beds.....
There is a new series starting in March on BBC2, fronted by Alys Fowler, on "Edible Gardening". She will be showing how she gardens with veg and flowers together and manages a meal a day from that method. It will be an interesting watch and I'm sure would help me to downsize without really giving up any crops. A new challenge which will require ingenuity but perhaps be more manageable as I get older....
And some may remember me mentioning how thrilled I was to discover that there would be a new show starting this year....called the Edible Garden Show, at Stoneleigh, from 19-21 March. I bought tickets for two days, and booked a non-refundable hotel room, and started getting excited. Then two weeks ago I got an e-mail to say that it has been postponed 'til next year. Major disappointment! As I can't get a refund on the hotel. I will go anyway and visit Ryton Organic Gardens instead. On the way up from here I will also go and explore some of the countryside just north of Bicester where Flora Thompson grew up (that she based "Lark Rise to Candleford" on). These are things I have long wanted to do, so I am not so disappointed about the show.
They said that stallholders were reluctant to come forward due to the recession. I thought that now would have been a very good time for such a Show as almost everyone is talking about growing some vegetables....
I promise to take some photos soon!