My planned activities for this month - December

Activity Comment
Make large compost bin 07-12-16: Completed large compost bin
Clean up Brassicas 05-12-16: cleared Bed 4 feed and composted.
Clean paths and bed edges  
Repair bed 5 and add extra timber  
Burn all old timber and perpetual weeds  
Compost and cover all unused beds 05-12-16: Bed 4 and 5 feed and composted
Start preparing larger wicking pots for tomatoes (15)  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Allotment Blog December 2016

24th December

Vegtables harvest for Xmas

Had a quick visit to the allotment today mainly to harvest some vegetables, Carrots, Brussels Sprouts, and Cabbage ready for our Christmas Day Dinner. Whilst I was at the allotment I recorded a video for my monthly allotment tour for December. This will be edited and produced ready to upload over the holiday period. The image shows my Christmas Dinner Harvest, ( my Parsnips are at home in the Freezer).

20th December

Garlic showing

Had a quick visit to the allotment yesterday just to take my home compostables to the allotment for composting. While I was there I noticed that some of my glass in the newer Greenhouse had shifted, So I spent some time repairing the greenhouse. Today I returned to the allotment with the intention of clearing and tidying my paths between the beds after abour 30 minutes I decided to leave it for another day and returned home for a nice cup of coffee. The image shows my garlic has started to grow

14th December

Compost Bin Gate

A very sunny and warm morning at the allotment today. I started the morning by weeding around Bed 10A where I am growing carrots in large bags. I then harvested some Carrots and Cabbage for our lunch today. Next I made a sliding gate for the new compost bin using some old timber, as illustrated by the image. Finaly I covered Bed 7B which contains some unwanted Comfrey, this will be left covered for the 2017 growing season. I then called it a day and went home for lunch.

12th December

Compost Compost Bins

Another visit to the allotment this morning, and spent all of my time working with composting tasks. I started by moving my plastic compost bins to their new home next to the new large compost bin. Next I removed the uncomposted materials to the new large compost bin, this left a large amount of composted items which will be stored here until required in spring 2017. The first image shows the composted materials, before they were watered and covered with a membrane. The second image shows my empty compost bins in their new home.

9th December

Compost Bin

I visited the allotment this morning and spent most of my time working with composting items. I started by chopping up some compostables and adding layers of soaked cardboard and paper between the green items. I emptied one plastic compost bin that I had borrowed and added the part composted items to the new compost bin. I was then able to return the borrowed compost bin to my neighbour. Finally I cut down my Asparagus ferns and added them to the new compost bin. I decided to call it a day and went home for lunch. The image shows the new compost bin.

8th December

Cleared another three beds

Another great morning at the allotment it was a little dull with a little wind. I spent most of my time clearing and weeding beds 10, 11,12b all cleared items were added to the new compost bin. I will feed and compost these beds on my next visit, and hopefully get them covered for the winter. The image shows the three beds that have been cleared. Finally I soaked 6 buckets of paper and cardboard ready to add to the compost bin on my next visit.

7th December

Made New Large Compost Bin

A great morning at the allotment it was bright with a little wind. I spent my time building a new compost bin using a pair of old garage doors and some old timber. The compost bin is shown in the image. The reason I have built this new bin is to try and get more free compost instead of having to purchase general purpose compost every year. I will still be using my six plastic bins that at the moment are completely full.

5th December

Cleaned up Brassica Bed

Another trip to the allotment this morning it was nice and sunny with a slight chill in the air. I started by clearing all Brassicas that were past their best from Bed 4, leaving my Purple Sprouting Broccoli to continue growing until ready for harvesting in March 2017. I then feed the bed with dried Manure and covered with compost. I also completed this process on Bed 5, were I had grown Beets, Spinach, and Parsnips. I finally cleared two of my old potato bags that were used to grow carrots. It was this compost that was added to the beds I have just composted.

3rd December

Runners removed from Strawberry Bed

A trip to the allotment this morning it was overcast with a chill in the air. I spent my time this morning clearing the last strawberry bed of any unwanted Strawberry runners. I will feed and compost the plants on my next visit. Finally I picked some carrots for our Sunday lunch. The image shows the completed Strawberry Bed.

December

What needs doing this month

Fruit

  • Spray all fruit trees and bushes with tar-oil winter wash when dormant.
  • Continue planting in suitable conditions.
  • Continue pruning
  • Apply nitrogenous fertilizer to trees grown in grass
  • Cut back newly planted trees and bushes

Vegetables

  • Lift Celery as it is required.
  • Continue to check Cabbages and Sprouts for any loosening in winds.
  • Lift any root crops and store in boxes of moist sand. This is especially important if your ground is wet and heavy or you have serious problems with slugs.
  • Sit down and plan out next year's crop rotation and what seeds and plants you will need.
  • Check that cloches are firmly secured to prevent them blowing away in the wind.
  • Brussels Sprouts and winter Broccoli should now be ready for picking.
  • Consider where you are going to place your Runner beans next year and dig out a trench.
  • Ridge the soil up on either side and leave it open to the beneficial effects of the winter.
  • Leeks should now be ready to start lifting.

Herbs

  • Protect bay, rosemary and marjoram from severe winter weather

Greenhouse

  • Water and ventilate cautiously
  • Insulate the greenhouse
  • Light levels are critical, so consider using artificial light
  • Harvest plump white chicons from forced chicory
  • Continue to sow a succession of lettuce for continuity of supply
  • Carry out complete winter pruning of grape vines
  • Top dress peaches and nectarines
  • Ventilate freely

General

  • service mechanical machinery ready for spring
  • check the seed catalogues and order any seeds onion sets and plants required
  • check sundries like stakes, bean poles, canes, netting, fertilisers etc.
  • tidy up the shed while its still quite quiet.