Sunday, 30 August 2009

Not starving

If you believed the hype in the news recently on the subject of food security you'd think we were all on the verge of starvation. In fact nothing could be further from the truth - we throw away as much food as we eat in this country and are quite capable of being self-sufficient. If you ask me this is just another ruse by the government to manufacture consent for the introduction of GM crops. Going by past experience whenever I here a creepy government minister say they want to "have a debate" about something I just know they've already made their minds up and are about to go on a major public relations offensive. And as usual putting corporate interests ahead of the well-founded concerns of the people who elect them.

There's another type of creepy pest on my plot at the moment - cabbage white caterpillars on my sprouts. Fortunately I can squish them between my fingers. If only it was that easy with the two-legged variety.

A couple of weeks ago I sowed some pak choi and some spinach for autumn greens; it looks like the slugs have nobbled the pak choi but the spinach seems to be coming on alright. Looking ahead today I've also sown some spring cabbage and onions.

Growth is slowing down but there's still peas, beans, cabbage and carrots for the eating, as well as potatoes and onions in store, sprouts and leeks to look forward to. Plenty of fruit too- as well as raspberries and blackberries the plums are ready now and the first apples and grapes. Yes grapes. It's a veritable Garden of Eden out there. I might even nip round the corner shop and get myself a bounty. Food security my arse.

Cabbage white caterpillars

Lil' green bastards.

Plums and apples


Snapdragons and carnations

Saturday, 15 August 2009

About time too

Finally I won something. My plot is now the most environmentally friendly in the city, at least according to the judges of the Derby in Bloom Allotments Competition, and who am I to argue. So I'd like to thank my agent and my family for their support and to those of you who didn't win - better luck next time and eat my shorts.

Maincrop spuds

All safely gathered in, not a bad haul and of course the most environmentally friendly spuds in the city.

More peas

Now harvesting the second row of maincrop; not as many as on the earlier rows but better than a poke in the eye.


The wet and cloudy weather held these back so now that the sun's come out I've got a glut. Should make me popular with the neighbours.

Another snap of the snaps

And why not:

Monday, 10 August 2009

Living the good life

Loads to eat from the plot despite the soggy weather: spuds, peas, carrots, french and runner beans, cabbage, tomatoes, stored garlic. I've harvested the onions this weekend too, the tops haven't quite died down yet but the ground's been so wet I thought it was time to get them out and dried off. The second lot of raspberries are fruiting now and the wild blackberries too. I'm so damn healthy it hurts.

Onions drying

Flowers on the plot

Cosmos and snapdragons still flowering nicely and carnations just starting to:

Saving seed

This is something I never seem to get around to doing enough of so I'm trying to rectify that.


Sweet rocket

Green manure

I sowed this phacelia where the garlic was and it's greening up nicely:

Summer fruits

Raspberries and blackberries:

Splashing out

I don't often buy plants but I couldn't resist this salvia "Blue Angel" with it's intense blue flowers.

Garden this weekend

Potentilla and lettuce (red salad bowl)