Saturday, 22 November 2014

Late Season Inspection

Today was the first time we'd visited the allotment in about a month. Happily it's still there and looking much the same as the last time we were down. If you're going to neglect your patch of ground, this is a good time of year to do it, as the shortening days and plunging temperatures put everything into stasis. We've defo made the right choice in downsizing our commitment to the plot; as much as we love doing this veg thing, there are too many other bits of life that take up significant chucks of time as well.

Alliums Away
All the onions and garlic that Kasia planted a few weeks back have gotten off to a good start, which is heartening news. Autumn-planted alliums have, for the last couple of years, hardly even sprouted by now, although mostly kicked on again in the spring, so it's nice to see some fresh green shoots among the more autumnal shades.

Brassicas to the left, carrot bed to the right
In terms of actual food, we've still got lots of Cavolo Nero to pick. This has been a wonder crop, with only a few plants providing a steady supply of hardy and great tasting leafage. We'll be growing it again for sure. We're at the back-end of the carrot harvest now, although there are still some cracking roots to lift.

We brought home the winter squash and pumpkins that had been curing in the shed. A very modest harvest of these but nice to have nonetheless. Some simple dinners of roast squash with herbs and spices will enliven the dark nights in short order.

The insides, and outsides too, actually, of our compost bins were festooned with these tiny white flies. I've no idea what they are, and whether they're any kind of problem. The compost looks like it seriously needs some brown material as it's gone very sludgy; we wondered if this mini-plague of flies is due to the rotting, rather than composting processes taking place inside the bins?

There's been some significant felling of trees around the allotments; I'm wondering if that has anything to do with efforts to make the place look more ship-shape in the face of issues raised by The Freemen? In any case, despite not seeing anyone else around in the short time were were there, things on our track are looking about as neat as they ever have done.

Back on our patch, some late-planted turnips have put on quite a lot of leafy growth, but show no signs of forming edible roots just yet while some kohlrabi are threatening to swell into something resembling a food. The next job will be to get some sacks of manure to dig in to the main patches before covering everything up and then pretty much wait until the New Year when thoughts turn to seed potatoes and the ground swings into action once again. I'm looking forward, with the reduction in the size of our plot, to gardening less but gardening better next term.


  1. The white flies have probably come from brassica leaves thrown in the compost, Are they like tiny moths?

    We haven't been to the plot much either and our onions and garlic are doing well too. Last year they were at a similar stage at this time and produced a good harvest. I think the trick is to plant early enough for them to do a bit of growing before winter sets in.

    1. Yeah, that's exactly what they're like, weird little white moths. I think you're right about Autumn-planted onions. Last couple of years we've been too late with them I reckon.

    2. They're whitefly then which area nuisance on brassicas, They fly up in a cloud when disturbed - they won't be a problem in your compost bin and should be killed off over winter.


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