More beans and no fruit cage

It must be the first day of the year where it has been cold but sunny, clear blue sky for most of the day. It meant a slight air frost overnight but it had all gone by the time we woke up (I heard Tom scraping his car windscreen when he left for work early in the morning).

Today I wanted to plant out the broad beans which have been outside undercover for a while more than ready to plant out. These replace the over wintered ones which all apart from one plant died with frost damage. I couldn’t find the string to tie these up so I had to go home and return with a new roll, it’s nice weather today but that’s it for the rest of the week – back to wind and rain.

I need to plant out some more onion sets to replace some of the overwintered ones that did not make it. Likewise, I need to cover them with insect netting to keep off allium leaf miner. To prepare for this I moved over the hoops low and wide and I’ll order some netting later on in the day. I will be planting onions at home too, this will be the last attempt on the plot and if it doesn’t work then no more alliums for a year or two.

The fruit cage netting was a good idea but it also backfired in that it was hard for birds to get to the bushes but it was also hard for myself too. This meant less weeding and looking after, resulting in a bit of an overgrown mess. Since we got hold of some rebar free of charge it showed me that it’s quite quick and easy to construct netting. Currently these are holding up the netting over the purple sprouting (of which there will be some for picking next week) so I’ll either buy some more or by the time we need to cover the fruit bushes they will fee and not being used. I started by taking down the cage, I’m sure bits of old netting will plague me for years. A quick prune of the currant bushes and initial weeding. I will weed further another time and also decide if I’m going to keep the gooseberry bushes or get some more. Since I moved them a couple of years ago they haven’t really done much. They came with the plot, and we have been at the plot for eight years, so maybe it’s time.

I did general tidying up and pulled up some leeks.

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