Friday, October 10, 2014

September End

As September came to an end I had a look around the plot.....

mint at the stony end of the plot.
The stony end.
This strip, at the southernmost end of the plot, is where generations of plotters before me have chucked all the stones as they were working the rest of the allotment. It is impossible to dig here with anything but a small hand fork. On the plus side this area is free draining and the stones retain the suns heat. I have decided, then, to make this my herb bed with a few self seeding annual flowers thrown in.
I love horseradish sauce. Seriously, I could eat it straight from the jar with a spoon. It's ridiculously easy to
Horseradish growing in pipe
grow....too easy in fact; horseradish is a real thug and will take over the whole herb bed if I let it. This year I'm trying an experiment. I have planted it in 2ft long lengths of pipe. This will hopefully mean that I get long, straight roots (which is the part you use to make the sauce) and will prevent the plants from spreading all over the place.
squashes, plastic and pop bottle.
 Squashes and pumpkins
I lost my vines to powdery mildew a few weeks ago. Planting through plastic (while waiting for the couch grass to die) makes it hard to water. I did 'plant' pop bottle funnels by each plant and I have plenty of good sized fruits. Unfortunately, they weren't quite ripe when the mildew struck and so how well they store remains to be seen.
globe artichoke year one
We've had a long old summer here in London.
September has been the driest on record with high temperatures and plenty of sunshine. I got off to a late start in the spring when I took on this new plot and so it follows that seeds sown late will flower late. As the plot should be winding down for winter, I am being treated instead to a spectacular show! The globe artichoke is more than 5ft high and has thrown out a dozen buds.
Also the cosmos, sown a little late, has waited until now to flower. These sweet peas just won't quit! I stopped picking (and watering) at the beginning of the month to allow seeds to develop for next year but they just won't stop flowering and the scent as you brush past is just amazing.
sweetpeas still flowering

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