September 2015

Wednesday 30th September

I good morning at the allotment this morning the sun was shining with some wind. I started by taking my monthly allotment tour video which is displayed in "Allotment Tours", and also can be found on "You Tube". I then spent the rest of the morning sorting out and tidying my old greenhouse and the old shed.

28th September

Back at the allotment after a short break away in our caravan. I harvested some crops including Raspberries, Lettuce, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Beetroot, and Runner Beans. I then cut the grass paths before returning home for lunch.

21st September

 Brassica section cleared weeded and dug.I had a good morning at the allotment First I harvested some more Cauliflower and Calabraise and tomatoes before I cleared part of my Brassica section by removing the old Calabraise and also the Cauliflowers that had produced heads, I weeded and then dug the section ready to add manure and compost a little later. See image on the left.

I then spent the rest of my time removing strawberry runners from the strawberry bed that I planted up last October. I gave away quite a few rooted runners to a couple of allotment holders. I will feed and dig around the strawberry plants on my next visit to the allotment. Finally I returned home for lunch.

19th September

New Strawberry bed set up for next year.It was a lot brighter today so I spent more time at the allotment. I managed to plant out my new strawberry runners into a new bed. I also removed the old strawberries that have been in the ground since 2013. I removed them as they were too closely planted and were difficult to harvest, I then turned the earth and composted the area adding some new strawberry runners ready for next year. These were planted using the "Square Foot Gardening" method at 1ft apart in each direction. The image on the right shows the new updated strawberry bed. I then returned home for lunch.

17th September

Had another quick visit to the allotment as the weather has been wet. I spent my time harvesting Salad items, Cauliflower, Calabraise and Raspberries and returned home for lunch.

12th September

Just a very quick visit to the allotment between the showers. We just harvested some crops ( beans for freezing, salad items for tomorrows lunch).

10th September

 Self watering bucket testAnother bright morning at the allotment. My first job was to add the bark on the greenhouse floor. I then spent some time raking and levelling the beds where the main crop potatoes were grown. Next I made a self watering bucket ( watered from under the bucket, which is then wicked up to the bucket that contains the growing medium). I have set it up to test to make sure it works, if it does I will explain how it has been made. At the moment it is still a work in progress. I then harvested some salad items for lunch before returning home for dinner. Image on the left shows the wicking buckets, under test, although they will be tested in the greenhouse where they will be used.

9th September

greenhouse floor covered with membraneA nice bright and warm morning at the allotment. I concentrated on levelling the greenhouse floor, by raking and adding more earth in the area that needed it, once this was achieved I covered the floor with old carpet and then a double layer of ground cover membrane.

I will purchase some bark chippings to cover the membrane and hopefully complete this on my next allotment visit.

The image on the left shows the floor covering to date. I then returned home for lunch and a nice cup of tea.

8th September

My main crop potatoes drying out in the garageI spent the morning at the allotment washing and riddling my main crop potatoes. Before returning home I harvested some Raspberries for lunch and gave the beds a much needed water. I then brought the the potatoes home with me to allow them to dry out in the garage. See image on the left.

I am making a video of this years potato harvest which I hope to upload to You Tube within the next few days as I still have to dry out the potatoes, bag them up and weight them. I will also have a copy of the video on this page.

7th September

Desiree and Pink Fir main crop potatoes.

Had a busy morning at the allotment this morning. I had only one task in my mind, and that was to dig up my main crop potatoes. I managed to complete the task and placed the potatoes in the shed until my next visit where I will try and remove as much dirt as possible before taking them home to weigh and store for the winter. I must admit it looks like a far better crop than last year. The image on the right show both my Desiree and Pink Fir Apple main crop potatoes that were dug this morning.

4th September

Just a quick visit to the allotment this morning. I took some compostables and prunings down to the allotment to compost and use the prunings for sticks to support plants next year. The next job was to harvest some lettuce, radish, cauliflower, calabraise, tomatoes, cucumber and beans. I then went home after giving the greenhouse and strawberry cuttings a water.

2nd September

Strawberry bed prepared and green manure seeds protected from pigeonsI had a nice productive morning at the allotment this morning. I started by collecting and potting up strawberry runners ready to plant out later in the year. See main image on top of page. I then prepared the new strawberry bed. See middle bed in the image on the left. I noticed that the pigeons were feeding on my sown green manure seeds so I added some coloured tape to try and protect the seed. see image on the right. Finally I drained off another 4pts of comfrey feed ready to use at a later date. I then returned home for lunch.

1st September

Made a short visit to the allotment today, the ground was still rather wet due to the amount of rain we have had over the last few days. I started by making a video covering the activities that have taken place at the allotment for the month of August, this has been uploaded to You Tube and can be found in the August diary section on this website. I than added some more greenhouse clips to the glass and added three shelves to the greenhouse. Finally I harvested some salad items before returning home for lunch.

September

What needs doing this month

Fruit

  • Plan for new planting season, and order trees. Choose late-flowering varieties for frosty areas.
  • Cut down grass around established trees
  • Prepare storage areas for storing apples and pears
  • Pick fruit in cool conditions before fully mature
  • Complete summer pruning of apples and pears.
  • Harvest blackberries and loganberries, cut away old growth, and tie in new.
  • Prune well-trained peaches and tie in new shoots
  • Spray cherries
  • Pick plums and damsons and prune trees
  • Pick September fruiting raspberries
  • Protect autumn fruiting strawberries against birds and slugs and cover with cloches in cold weather

Vegetables

  • Lift Carrots and Beetroot and place in store.
  • Transplant Lettuce sown last month to cold frame for winter use.
  • Continue to earth up Celery.
  • String up Onions or put in storage in net bags.
  • Lift a few plants of Endive and place in a frame. Cover with pots to blanch them.
  • Test Main crop Potatoes to see if they are ready for lifting. This is done by digging up a tuber and rubbing the skin to see if has set. If the skin does not rub off easily the Potatoes are ready for lifting.
  • Gather all outdoor Tomatoes including the green ones before they are damaged by frost. The green fruits can be ripened indoors on a sunny windowsill.
  • Ensure that ripening Onions are kept dry. Place them in a cold frame if necessary.
  • Lift, dry and store Shallots.
  • Feed Leeks with a general fertiliser.
  • Place excess Marrows in store. A good way of storing them is to place them in net bags in a cool dry place.
  • Sow green manures for overwinter growing.
  • Onions should now be ready for lifting and ripening.
  • Continue to pick French and Runner beans so that they do not become stringy.
  • Continue to earth up celery a little at a time.
  • Pick sweet corn as soon as it is ready. If left too long it will not be as sweet and will be starchy.
  • If the haulm of main crop potatoes have died down, lift, dry and store the tubers to prevent attacks by slugs or blight spores.

Herbs

  • Sow parsley and chervil to provide a spring crop
  • Divide and replant clumps bergamot
  • Under glass take cuttings of bay and rue
  • Take cuttings of lavender and protect with a frame or cloche

Greenhouse

  • Overhaul heating equipment
  • Ventilate and water carefully, as this is important
  • Remove permanent shading
  • Harvest tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet peppers and aubergines
  • Harvest Melons when ripe
  • Prick out lettuce
  • Check temperature changes in greenhouses containing ripening fruit
  • check for pests and disease
  • Harvest peaches and nectarines

General:

  • Cut grass paths
  • check plant supports for movement
  • Keep weeds down by hoeing
  • watch for slugs and pests
  • Check seed catalogues for next years seed requirements
  • Order seeds