Real Men Sow

A Patch From Scratch: September Update

September has felt rather like a transitional period.

I’m almost ashamed to admit that I’ve not had a decent session on the plot this month. I’ve rarely visited, bar trips to harvest leeks, which are one of the successes in an otherwise rubbish year.

A New Beginning
My mind is elsewhere now I’ve finally made the decision to give the plot up and concentrate on my garden. The allotment rent is due in November, and apart from the leeks, kale and spinach, there isn’t much left on there.

I’ve dug my potatoes this month, and will pick squashes over the next week. All that’s left is to move strawberry plants, rhubarb and assorted fruit bushes over to the garden and pass the baton on to the next person.

This isn’t a time for sadness though, as a whole new chapter is set to start. My garden Patch from Scratch is now completely cleared of weeds and toot, ready for manuring.

After pondering whether to use compost or manure, I realised that actually I have nowhere near enough compost to cover the whole area, so my obsessing was pointless. Manure is where it’s at, and I can get hold of a good dump of the stuff from the local riding school.

Strawbs, Plums and Pears
I have dug compost in alongside the pathway ready to plant my strawberry cuttings. They’ve almost all rooted now, which is a very exciting development as they will be the first plant to go into the garden patch.

The plums on my two trees came and went fleetingly, but the trees provided a good crop. We don’t seem so lucky with the pears though, which seem to have some kind of pest problems. Almost every pear has a hole in it, and a rotting core. I’ve no idea what could cause this. ‘Bit of a choker’, as my dad would say.

A Clean Greenhouse
Towards the end of the month the temperature dropped enough for me to spend a couple of hours in the greenhouse, so I cleared the weeds out of there too. I need to fix the door, but I’m happy that there is soil rather than concrete in there as I can grow plants like aubergines directly into the ground.

I liked the sticker I found on the door too (pictured above).

Also interesting how all the rain we’ve had has brought the stones to the top. Suddenly my earth looks quite stony.

Progress!
Reading up on what I need to do over the next couple of months has given me a kick up the bum too. There’s no resting on laurels in this game; always a job to be done. Next step for me is to prepare the soil to receive my transplant fruit bushes and new rhubarb crowns.

I’ve a slight change of plan where their location is concerned, after worrying about the shade in the area where I’d initially wanted to plant them. Going to put the fruit next to the greenhouse, and grow leafy, more shade tolerant plants along the fence.

I’m looking forward to putting my fruit in. Together with my two newly installed compost bins, this will feel like progress all over again.

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About Real Men Sow

meIn 2007, I took on a redundant allotment plot with my gardening-mad mum Jan. As all good mums do, she went along with it, but I don’t think she held out much hope. However, over a decade later, and she now lets me do stuff without watching over my shoulder, so I must be doing something right. [ read more ]

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