The arrival of autumn

11 Sep

Let’s face it: we were all in denial last week, there was sunshine, the kids didn’t need coats as they walked into school. I really thought (and this is admittedly rather greedy given the beautiful summer we have had) we were due for an Indian summer. I thought we’d get another 3 weeks at least of glorious sunshine.

Fast forward to this week and the slippers have been dug out along with chunky knit jumpers. I wore my wellies (yes still sporting the crap pink festi wellies with holes) for the first time in months today. A nearby neighbour asked me what I was planning to do today and I ummed and then said digging I suppose.

There hasn’t really been that much to do of late. A bit of light weeding, a bit of harvesting, a bit of giving the plants their feed. Re-potting or planting seedlings. But in terms of great allotment projects, like building beds, making paths and sorting out fruit corner, I haven’t had to face anything for ages. Hence my visits down to the plot have been sunny and enjoyable all summer.

But there is still a lot to do. A third of the plot has been covered in membrane since February. We agreed to leave it, let the weeds die and then tackle it in autumn. Today as I walked the kids to school wearing woolly hats, I knew autumn had well and truly arrived. It was time to peel back the membrane and face some digging.

digging b4

This is what strip 3 looked like at 9.30am

I did my usual wobbling about, lamenting the fact there were quite a few people around to witness my crap digging. I watered the earth and pulled out the last remaining ghost weeds. I only unpeeled a small section at first but once I got going I remembered what hard but slightly pleasant work it is – working on something completely new and fresh.

digging

Strip 3 at 11.30am, about 30% is now dug

I pulled up more weeds as I went along and then tried to level it off with a hoe before sprinkling poultry manure on it and re-covering it. I am not taking any chances – it will stay under wraps till April, I am just getting it ready for then.

After all that hard work I rewarded myself by picking some more tomatoes and tidying up herb garden.

Digging harvest

At last I don’t have to buy any tomatoes this week!

digging herbs

Herb garden – the safest place to grow lettuce away from all the slugs!

Finally as I was administering feed to Dylan’s ailing pumpkin plant I noticed we may even get some home grown fruit this year. The tree I have been calling an apple tree is most definitely a pear tree and it looks like we may get one pear each!

digging pears

So autumn is definitely here. It’s time to clear away the old plants, harvest what you can and most of all dig! Before the ground starts freezing and your fingers go numb.

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2 Responses to “The arrival of autumn”

  1. Gill Ridgewell. September 11, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

    Yes Autumn arrived very suddenly didn’t it? One day still sunny and warm then next day very chilly indeed. Your tomatoes and pears look great and well done for the digging – that patch of the plot looks very flat and weed free. How great that you’ve had such a lovely first summer on your allotment. I know Ofplot never visited but if they had you’d have passed with flying colours! xx

    • wifi allotment September 11, 2013 at 5:54 pm #

      Yes it was good to get it started because it’s been at the back of mind that I had to start digging soon! I think ‘ofplot’ did peruse as some neighbours received a warning so I think we did enough to keep them at bay this year!! X

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