As the lockdown continues, I realise just what a sanctuary my allotment is. When I’m there everything feels ‘normal’ – including me! However, I may have been a little overexcited with my lockdown planting. I got a bit carried away and grew runner and green beans too early at home – and courgettes too – and planted them out in April. They’re all looking a bit wind scorched and stunted and not happy. My garden peas too haven’t even germinated at the plot where I sowed them directly into the ground. But I planted some in my conservatory five days ago and they’re up. There’s an old gardener’s adage about planting “not too deep and not too early” and I wish I’d paid attention to it!
VE Day got me thinking about the Second World War and how the Land Girls turned their hands to ‘allotmenting’ on a grand scale by working in agriculture and on the farms to keep the nation fed. And also how jam making and preserving really came into its own in this period. I made some yummy strawberry jam last year so hope to do the same this year if the harvest is good enough.
So the usual jobs for June are: Weeding – hoeing should only be done in dry weather to make sure the weeds die out in the sun; Watering – regularly – when seedlings are trying to get established; Planting out seedlings such as beans, leeks, pumpkins, sweetcorn, sprouts, courgettes, cauliflowers, celeriac, squashes, outdoor tomatoes and cucumbers, and finally: Dealing with pests like greenfly and blackfly.
Enjoy any harvests you may have like: peas, broad beans, lettuce, raddish, beetroot, spring onions, cabbage, rhubarb and strawberries. Nothing can beat the flavour when they’re home grown, freshly picked and cooked/eaten within an hour or two.
Do contact our membership secretary, Angela Brown, if you’re interested in taking on a plot: 01473 612283 / [email protected].