Blog

Garden Update

So far, 2016 has been an out of the ordinary year for us, with even more still to come.

After spending the first 4 months of the year looking forward to retirement, part of which was because I hoped that retirement would allow extra time for my allotments, I found that wet weather early in the year delayed my best efforts to get an early start; however, eventually the yearned for day arrived and I was a "pensioner".

Before retirement, the weather didn't play ball, so I had been snatching time in the garden when I could; still eventually, better late than never, I managed to get the bulk of the gardens planted before we went on holiday in June (see Travels in Italy 2016).

 

During April I managed to get my Shallots, Onion sets and Garlic in along with the Potatoes and Broad Beans (Fig 1&2).

Figure 1 Figure 2

 

In the Greenhouse plants were starting to germinate from the seeds I had planted so things were starting with promise (Fig 3,4&5) - I was disappointed however that the grape vine was still dormant, especially given that people were posting pictures of their vines budding in Italy on Twitter. At the same time, I was harvesting Spring onions, young Garlic and baby Beet (Fig 6).

Figure 3 Figure 4
Figure 5 Figure 6

 

May saw the Cherry tree blossoming (Fig7), the Grape Vine budding (Fig 8), the greenhouse being planted out (Fig 9&10) and the Rhubarb being ready to harvest (Fig 11). The garden continued to grow on (Fig 12, 13&14) with plants still being set out.

Figure 7 Figure 8
Figure 9 Figure 10
Figure 11 Figure 12
Figure 13 Figure 14

 

During this time, I was still producing Cheeses and Bacon etc. (Fig15&16) and keeping busy with the cheese making courses I was running; however, during this period we decided that Jan should also go for retirement, we also decided we would sell our house and move to the country.

Figure 15 Figure 16

 

This decision impacted upon how we moved forward in many ways; it meant that I had to cancel any further cheese making courses. It also drew into question my commitment to the allotments, so much so, that I am now just harvesting the produce and doing no further work in preparation for next year.

To continue, June was a month of holiday, we spent most of it on holiday in Italy, but I'm pleased to say that whilst I was away, everything managed to continue growing (Fig 17&18) with me starting to harvest produce on a regular basis (Fig 19,20 &21).

Figure 17 Figure 18
Figure 19 Figure 20 Figure 21

 

That sort of get us up to date, the Onions, Shallots and Garlic are all out of the gardens now and drying, with the potatoes coming up really well (Fig 22&23).

Figure 22 Figure 23

 

We are starting to prepare to move to the country, so the next update may be later in the year and my next garden update may be about starting a new vegetable plot.