Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Yes! We have no potatoes

General chit chat over the weekend about use of the allotment and the back garden has resulted in the decision not to grow potatoes this year. Well, maybe just a row of new potatoes, as there is nothing nicer than freshly dug, homegrown, organic new potato lightly boiled with mint and covered in butter.

But we have decided that we are going to concentrate this year on growing stuff that is expensive to buy. Like aubergines, beans, salady doo-dah, chard, spinach etc. And definitely more squash, because vegetarians can never have enough squasheseses....squashum....squashi...
squish? Also, we are going to solve the issue of weeds around the polytunnel by surrounding the polytunnel with paving slabs (hopefully courtsey of Freecycle) and then cover the paving slabs with pots of herbs and flowers!

And the boundary fence of Cluckinghen Palace has been taken down, so the chickens are now free to ramble all over the shop. The PLAN is that instead of keeping the chickens away from the growing areas, we are going to keep the growing areas away from the chickens, if you get my drift. Which means planting things that the chickens won't eat e.g nut trees (I am very keen on having a couple of nut trees), or planting stuff that the chickens will eat but will be cunningly enclosed within a protective fence which means the chickens will be able to see the plants but they won't be able to reach them with their pecky little beaks; this will no doubt cause them to spend the entire summer with their pecky little beaks pressed up against the protective fence, dribbling after the lush produce that they can't reach.

'We'll only be round your place more often for hobnobs,' says Mrs Miggins.
'Fine by me,' I say. 'As long as you keep off my fancy lettuce.'

We're also on the verge of buying a fruit cage and extending the fruit growing area at the allotment. There are a lot of birdies up the allotment and we lose a fair percentage of fruit to them; a cage seems a good idea. Plus we like building stuff. Ah, such fond memories of putting up that polytunnel two years ago which is still standing tall and proud despite several hefty falls of snow and us flailing around inside with various hoes, rakes and spades. We have tried to erect make-do-and-mend protection for the fruit, but it never works very well, and access is always a trial. A nice, solid, upright, non-floppy cage is just the ticket. One that's tall enough to stand up in. With a door. That'll keep out a pigeon. Or an eagle.

So the back garden looks like Steptoes junk yard at the moment. But in my mind's eye it looks like a little cottage garden, all cute beds, arches trailing with honeysuckle, hops smothering the fence, nuts trees making a tiny woodland area, pots and troughs of flowers and herbs, with three hens pottering around keeping it all slug free.

'Ha! Like that's going to happen,' says Mrs Miggins.
'It might,' I say.

1 comment:

Yategirl said...

Sounds fab and I second the "no potatoes but expensive veg growing" this year! Am very interested in your possible fruit cage - look forward to hearing/seeing more in the coming months xx