Field Allotments at Amerton
By Mrs FM
Herbs & Other
Issues And Going Green.
And Other Climbing Plants.
Alan J Hartley
In the coming days I will be
sowing my Broad Beans that will harvest next Spring, but they will be
ready a little earlier than everyone else’s and so will generally avoid
the problems that Black Fly create. Normally I put in the Aquadulce type
and this year I forgot to get any in time resulting in everywhere being
sold out when I did look. However, I did find a packet of an older
variety called “Bunyards Exhibition” which can also be sown Spring and
Autumn. Also going in will be my Garlic Cloves. These definitely do need
to go in now as they say that they need a cold spell to make them
properly form the Cloves instead of making just one solid bulb.
As Autumn sets in and we get colder nights with the leaves starting to
turn and even drop, it is time to think about cleaning out the old
fashioned, but solid, brick built, Cold Frame that is on my Allotment.
It needs to be clean, tidy and weed free, ready for later in the month
when I dig up my Chrysanthemums. They will be roughly put into pots in
the Cold Frame and buried in a Wood Chip blanket. This seemed to work
well last year with them needing very little attention all Winter other
than the occasional spot of water. Last year I was able to leave my
Korean Chrysanthemums in the ground as they are supposed to be fully
hardy. The only real drawback with growing this type is the fact that
the flowers, although very attractive, are quite small, look more like
Asters and grow like Sprays. They seem to grow into decent sized plants
though and put on a good show, so I shall definitely be keeping them.
The colder weather is also bringing other plants to an end including the
Runner Beans that have already finished flowering at the time of writing
this. It is just a matter of waiting for the last few Bean Pods to
develop before they come down. One problem that I did have with my
Runner Beans this year was that I planted them too close to each other
which made it difficult to pick them properly. They really do need to go
further apart next year. I did do some things right with them though.
For one I used organic string rather than a nylon, or plastic type of
string to tie the Canes up with. Consequently, all I need to do is just
strip them off the canes and chop them up with garden shears before
putting the whole lot into the compost heap. No need to fish out bits of
Plastic! The other thing that I got right was to tie diagonal bracing
canes against the uprights with one going either way on different sides.
Every year, my Bean Canes collapse a little, sometimes going right down
to the ground, due to the pushing of the persistent winds that we seem
to get on our Allotment. This year, with the braces on, they stayed up
and erect much to my delight. I had seen braces put on like this on one
of the gardening programmes on TV and it definitely works.
The Courgettes started to develop powdery mildew, a week, or two ago,
which is a sign that they were just about finished and the couple of
cold nights that we had at the beginning of this month finished them off
anyway, so they had to be cleared up as well going into my compost heap.
A couple of weeks ago I turned both of my compost heaps noticing that
one was really ready to dig out. So, the mature compost was turned out
and will be used to top up my Strawberry and Asparagus beds. The
Strawberry beds need replanting anyway and they say you should mulch
rather than weed your asparagus beds as although deep rooted they also
put up roots close to the surface.
Going into my freshly emptied Compost bin was another lot of turfs from
my Garden at home as I finally got round to making a new, narrow border
under the front window. They always say that composted turfs make good
compost and they certainly bulk out my compost heap! I am planting the
new bed with Hostas, a Hydrangea, Helebores, a Fuchsia, a couple of
Primula Denticulata, ( The Drumstick Primula) plus some self set
Cowslips that were rescued from the back garden.
As the season draws to a close there will be less and less planting, or
indeed growing of any kind, but more tidying up jobs to be done,
although of course my Leeks and Brussells Sprouts will continue growing
and will be ready for harvest much later in the year. One type of
planting will come into its own though and that is “Bare Root.” This
includes not only most Fruit Trees and Bushes such as Apples and
Raspberries, but also things like Strawberries. As I have said I do
intend to replant my Strawberries, but other than that I myself, have no
plans for planting any more fruit this year.