The first early potatoes, Aran Pilot were actually planted before the raised beds went down as they chitted a bit quick, so they ended up growing in the pathway as well! I dug those up first. This was the first produce I reaped and it felt great. The satisfaction you feel as you gently fork over the soil to reveal creamy yellow pebbles is fab!
The second bed, or first fully planted one was onions & root vegetables. At the beginning of May, we had a sudden burst of very hot dry weather that reduced my previously easy to manage soil to that resembling concrete. I had to dig each bed in, to sink the posts, dig the bed floor over and then fill with soil dug from a funny raised corner of the allotment, finishing with digging in a bag of ready to use manure & a heavy sprinkling of bonemeal. It was hard work, but I couldn’t plant up until each one was dug – thank heavens I don’t have to do all of that next year!
This bed ready, I planted red onions, garlic, beet root, carrots & spring onions. The onions went crazy and after a fashion, so did the beet root and carrots, but they had a bald spot between them, so I’m guessing a birdy had fun one morning pulling those out. Not to worry, as when I thinned them, I immediately planted the thinnings in the bald spots and touch wood – they’ve taken….
Bed 3 is sporting a lovely selection of young Cauliflower, green & purple Broccoli, sprouts, perpetual spinach and some huge late summer cabbages. Other allotment owners have complimented me on the size of my cabbages. I’m not entirely convinced size matters – the proof will be in the eating!
Bed 4 has a lovely display of runner beans! In between sweet corn and surrounded by courgettes in two varieties, with the corners rounded with rocket.
Bed 5 is shooting with peas, sweet peas and French beans. There are also beds each containing strawberries, raspberries, King Edward potatoes and a salad bed with lettuces, radishes, celery and fennel.
Meanwhile, in the greenhouse, there are 4 varieties of tomato, cucumbers, peppers, chillies & aubergines.
My only plant failures, were my 5th variety of tomatoes – tiny toms for hanging baskets, that were doing so well until a humid couple of weeks and they keeled over with blight.
If the rest of the planting is at all successful though, It’ll be a good first year! But I guess it’s all in the hands of the Gods…