Monthly Archive: April 2013

The allotment from the start

First day on the allotment

First day on the allotment before I started doing any work.

I got my allotment in April 2012 after been on the waiting list for a couple of months. The plot itself isn’t very big, 12 metres by 5 but it keeps me busy. The first couple of days on the plot was spent digging it over and generally giving it a once over. My plan was to get my potatoes in and then work out where everything else was going to go at a later date. I had 9 rows of potatoes; 3 first early and the rest second early, and these were probably the most successful crop I had that year, weighing it at around 30-40kg.

The next couple of months was spent experimenting with different sowing techniques, planting out various herbs, strawberries and other bits and pieces, just to get into the feel of things. My aim was to find out what works and what doesn’t, and found that I had too much lettuce and radish, my french beans were the dwarf variety and didn’t climb up my frames, and that I didn’t sow enough onions. (more…)

How to Grow Potatoes

How to grow potatoesPotatoes are probably one of the easiest vegetables to grow. They can be grown in an type of soil even containers if you’re short of space. However before you can begin, you must choose the variety you want to grow and whether you want to grow first or second early, or maincrop potatoes.

First early potatoes are ideal if you want to harvest them a little quicker or short of space. They are normally ready to harvest within 8-10 weeks depending on the variety you decide to grow. They are also less likely to encounter pests and diseases. Second earlies can be harvested roughly 16 weeks after planting, usually from late June and into August. Maincrop potatoes are ready to harvest after 18 weeks from planting. Maincrop potatoes generally take up more space but are ideal for storage. (more…)

How to Grow Pumpkins

Originally from South America, where they have been part of the staple diet for centuries, pumpkins are extremely popular in North America, and it is from there that their recent revival in Britain has come. They are, in fact, winter squashes but are frequently separated from the other members of the family simply on grounds of their size and uses. The distinctive name of pumpkin is usually given to the large, round winter squashes. (more…)

How to Grow Grapes

Grapes have long been appreciated, not only as fresh fruit, but also for making wine. Varieties of white or black grapes are specially selected for their purpose, and growing grapes for wine-making in particular is a very specialized business. Soil and weather conditions as well as choice of variety or varieties can make all the difference. If there ever was a case for checking what other gardeners in your area are doing, this is it. (more…)