Even though the allotment isn’t at it’s best this year I have fallen in love with one particular area and that is the flower patch. Colours are starting to show and everytime I walk up to my plot I have a smile on my face as I spot a new flower in bloom. The sweet peas on the archway have been flowering for a week or so now, however they haven’t grown very tall or as bushy as last year and I’m not entirely sure why. I may have planted them out a tad late… None the less I’m able to pick a handful during each visit to bring home and fill the house with the beautiful scent which is a bonus for me.
Self seeded Borage is everywhere on the allotment but I’m not complaining, the bees adore this little blue flower and it’s also edible so it’s a win win situation. I pulled a few of the seedlings up but decided to keep quite a few seeing as I won’t be planting out any annual flowers this year and need the colour and food for the bees on the allotment. The lavender, chamomile, feverfew, verbena bonariensis and dill are all flowering with the allium sphaerocephalon ready to burst into colour any day now. But the flower which has brought the biggest smile to my face are the poppies ‘frosted salmon’ which are putting on a stunning display. You have to be quick though otherwise you’ll miss them, the petals fall so quickly and leave one of my favourite seed heads to stand proud amongst the flower bed. I just love poppies and this particular one was purchased from one of the garden shows we were selling at. The petals look so frothy and silky, almost like a peony!
The wildlife pond is living up to it’s name and looking particularly wild this year with lots of self seeded borage and calendula around the water edge. The grapevine is bulking up nicely, the roses have been blooming for weeks now and the row of sunflowers along the back are surviving any slug attacks thanks to the frogs. This evening whilst watering the plot the frogs came out to say hello, ready for the evening slug patrol!
Now onto the vegetable beds and my favourite one, the legume bed. This is the most productive bed this year seeing as the root bed is filled with just potatoes and the brassica bed is non existence! In here are two rows of broad beans, one row of red onions, two rows of carrots, two courgettes, two crown prince squash and a block of 20 sweetcorn. Now apart from the onions going to seed and the broad beans being plagued with black fly, this bed is looking ok so it’s not a complete loss this year. The carrots germinated well, the sweet corn are bulking up and the courgettes are producing tiny babies which makes me so happy! I also managed to pick my first harvest of broad beans to take home to eat for supper. This Aquadulce Claudia variety were sown in December last year to over winter, they have been infested with black fly and left to be windswept but have still produced a small amount so for that I am thankful.
I wish I had more time to tend to my plot, to finish little jobs, to look after the plants and to keep the weeds down. But for now I’m thankful for all the small harvests and joys the allotment still manages to give me even though I’ve been neglecting it. Thank you mother nature!