Planting Garlic

We had so much garlic this year, not the best looking but quantity overruled quality it seems and we will be using it in in the kitchen for quite some months. I decided I would not plant as much this year and so ordered just 15 cloves which all arrived quite quickly, accompanied by a second bag of jumbo garlic cloves. I didn’t order that extra bag and so I’m not quite sure why they were included.

With a surprise day off work (everyone had worked so hard over the last months it seems that the company suggested we should all take a day off, I’m not complaining) and a sunny warm autumn morning, I decided to spent it at the plot. I planted two rows of garlic in a bit of space between the carrots and the fennel, give it a month or two and these will both be gone and the space opened up a bit more. I also planted three rows of winter onion sets nearby. They will be joined with shallots and normal onions in the spring.

The peas and broad beans that I planted last month have all come up. The beans were rather tall and had out grown their bottle cloches and so I removed them and tied the plants up to the sticks. I wonder if they are a bit too advanced and will be hit hard when the cold weather comes. The normal broad beans that I plant (and I will be doing again this year) I don’t normally sow until the middle of October. The peas I have never sown this time of year and so while I put something in for them to grow up, I also covered them in netting to keep some of the cold wind that will come our way in weeks to come.

The whole area that we had been covering in rotted down manure for ages was raked over and some clover seed scattered as a green manure. It’s possibly a bit late to be sowing that now, but the package was open and quite old so I thought I might as well give it a go.

While doing this I spotted strawberries on the strawberry plants. They didn’t have a good year and we picked only a handful of strawberries. It seems they are now keen to start producing, but I fear they have left it all a bit too late. Hopefully it is a good sign that the measures we too in cutting off the overhanging branches from the trees, and topping the bed up with compost, is having the right affect. Next year I’m hoping for a bit more success. The stawberry plants at home I have potted some of the runners and they are all now well established.

Onions and spring cabbage, sowed at home the other week, are all ok undercover. The cabbage has since been put into pots and maybe in two or three week’s time they will join the other cabbages on the plot. I pulled the third of four white cabbages. This one had exploded slightly which I noticed it starting to do the other week, but there is only so much cabbage you can eat. We have been making coleslaw, along with grated carrots and our cucamelons, which makes a nice mix.

A bit of hoeing and tidying up. It was actually pretty hot in the sun, which is strange as by the afternoon it was dark cloud and drizzle. The netting on the broccoli had fallen over some what and so I straightened that while making the area netted slightly larger in order to make room for the spring cabbage that will go there.

It seems at the moment the plot is fuller than it has been all year and looking good for it. The turnips and swede have doubled in size over the last week. I saw a turnip that I could have pulled but I’ll leave that for next week. The swede plants were looking a bit like swedes in places, which is another bonus.

Meanwhile, at home, we are still picking runner beans, pulling (small) carrots and (massive) beetroot. I sowed some spring onions and I used up the remaining onion sets and garlic that were left over from the allotment.

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