Down on the Allotment

Matron grows vegetables and fruit in a Hampshire garden. I've been growing veggies since I was knee high to a grasshopper. Some traditional varieties and old favourites as well as new ideas. I share my garden with my allotment assistant Daisy the Labrador. On Twitter as @MatronsVeggies

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Joys of Spring!

Well, it's all just shooting up at the moment down on the allotment! Whilst it is still very warm we have had a well needed and sustained period of rain - and I mean proper rain, not just 'wet air'. The potatoes are doubled in size and sitting bolt upright on the soil. The runner beans are sending up shoots and have just started finding their way up the bean poles. The tomatoes have grown about another 8" and I have had to tie them up twice in a week. This tomato pictured is one I have not tried before called 'Ildi' . It is supposed to be a small yellow, grape sized tomato but I have never seen anything like it! The trusses of flowers are collossal ! I would say about every 3rd leaf joint there is a truss of about a hundred flowers. I should think they are pretty small. My 'Harlequin' tomatoes have set their first fruit. They were the earliest last year, and have done the same this year.

I ate my first strawberry today. It was incredible. Such flavour you would never get anywhere else. I also did a fair bit of weeding today in between showers and dog walking (don't you just love the smell of wet dog?) anyway, weeds come up easily in this damp soil. Cleared a hundred weight of bindweed from my potatoes, and dug some very small dock plants. Weeding must be done diligently and persistently - you might just get the upper hand when it matters.


At 7:59 AM, Blogger Ashleigh said...

I'm growing Ildi too and I believe they have 100s of tomatoes per truss. It's going to be exciting to see what they do. I'm thinking I'll need to net the trusses because our allotment is very windy. How tall did the Ildi get before flowering? If they're not too tall I might keep them here on the balcony.

At 9:15 AM, Blogger Wild Mood Swings said...

They are the ones I used last year that kept going all the way until late October very sweet and very hardy.

At 1:55 PM, Blogger Matron said...

My Ildi started their first truss when they were only about 8" tall. None of them have set yet, but they were the first to show trusses. The whole plant is a light green colour compared to the others which are darker. Don't know how high it will grow. They are about 2ft tall now.

At 5:11 PM, Blogger cehwiedel said...

For those of us outside Britain: what is an allotment? Small acreage? Exurban? Suburban? Roof garden? Public garden? Shared garden? Village garden?

At 7:18 AM, Blogger Matron said...

What an interesting question! An Allotment is a small strip of land usually provided by a local council or authority in an urban city or town. In London, for instance, an allotment site may be sited anywhere. A plot of land of perhaps a few acres is divided up into strips of varying sizes, perhaps 20yards by 50yards. The council charges a nominal annual rent for the site and the allotment holder grows fruit and veg. Very popular during World War 2 when the nation was encouraged to 'dig for victory' to fend off food shortages. In Britain today there is a growing interest and demand for allotments as more people care passionately where there food comes from.


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