It’s June and I can’t believe we are halfway through the year already! It was another busy weekend but I managed to spend most of Saturday in my favourite place getting all those little jobs done. There were a few things that desperately need planting out including the french beans, borlotti beans, munchkin pumpkins, globe artichoke and a few more flowers. First things first though was the yearly task of building the bean support frame!
Ideally I would love a bean support made out of hazel to match my archway and if I could find it free anywhere I would snap it up, but I just can’t justify spending that much money on hazel rods right now so bamboo will have to do. I planted out two rows of 16 french beans and the variety is ‘Cobra’, I grew these last year and they were really tasty and produced a fair amount of pods. The broad beans overshadowed them last year however, so the plants didn’t grow as tall as expected but hopefully this year they will thrive.
I also focused my attention on the archway and planted out the borlotto beans and munchkin pumpkins. The sweet peas had already been planted and they are doing great, I tied them up each rod for a bit of support before planting a borlotto bean in with them making the total of bean plants on the archway 22. I am a little addicted to borlotto beans, the ones I grew last year were dried and kept in a jar and I still have one large jar left to eat! Dried beans can be stored for up to 4 years and they taste so nice, one of my favourite dishes is a butternut squash curry with borlotto beans and chickpeas.I did however, make a huge mistake last year which cost me half my harvest. When I picked the beans I left them in there pods to dry off in a hessian bag which I hung in the shed, that was a bad idea! More than half of the beans had to be chucked away because they had got damp and rotted so I was left with only 2 large jars. I have learnt from my mistake though and this year I won’t be storing them like that!
I’ve also decided to have three pumpkins growing up each side this year, there were meant to be this many last time however one plant died so I was left with a total of 5. The munchkins were still my best cropper last year and I’m hoping for the same this year, those 5 plants gave me a total of 38 tiny pumpkins which stored great through the Winter and tasted delicious too. I even mulched in well rotted manure over Christmas so you never know, I might get more pumpkins this year!
The allotment is starting to look so green and almost full up! All that’s left to go in now is one row of kale, some dill and the nasturtiums. I managed to plant out a few more flowers today and the globe artichoke was planted in amongst the new flower bed. Then there’s just the huge task of netting the fruit cage, I know I keep going on about this but I still haven’t done it yet and time is running out before the black currants and raspberries ripen. That is my next job though as I really don’t want to share my berries with the birds this year, I think they’ve already beaten me to the gooseberries!
Before I end this blog post I just wanted to tell all you avid Youtube watchers that I finished filming the next video over the weekend and I’ll be busy editing it over the next couple of days. So the next video should be uploaded on Wednesday if all goes according to plan and the computer plays nicely! 🙂
Happy gardening x