First Thursday in May on the allotment

Beginning of May on the allotmentA cloudy day and still needing to keep the warm jackets on, however the soil is warm enough for sowing and planting so a busy day for us all.

We planted another four rows of potatoes – Shetland Black, Salad Blue, Orla and Bambino, finished planting out all the onions and shallots and prepared the ground for the carrots and beetroot.

Planting potatoes

Planting out the onions

Carrots do better in fine, well-drained soil so we dig out a trench, sieve the dug-out soil to remove the stones, mix in some sand and return the mixture to the trench. The rows are given a light watering and then the seed is sown very finely with the lightest of coverings of sieved soil. A cover of ‘enviromesh’ is immediately put over and will stay on whilst carrots are in the ground giving almost 100 per cent protection against carrot root fly which is a major pest.

The broad beans which had been sown in March in root-trainers at home were big enough to be planted out now – the varieties are Aquadulce Claudia and Bunyard’s Exhibition. Another two varieties were sown in early April to give succession of cropping so will be planted out later in the month

Jobs for next week: Plant main crop potatoes; Sowing carrots, beetroot, turnips; Prepare for the allotment joining the ‘Biochar’ experiment – more next week

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