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Spud Grubber's Blog

Guy Barter

  • Date Joined: 15 Jan 2007

Recent Comments

  • Time is running out

    Guy Barter on 29 Jun 2007 at 11:26 PM

    Cool, wet conditions are playing havoc with warm weather crops.  The Italian plotholders plant their allotments with peppers, aubergines and cowpeas.  These all look yellow and stunted.  I point out that good, sensible British cabbages, leeks, parsnips, peas and potatoes thrive under these conditions, go well with roast dinners and that it is folly to plant only things unsuited to the climate.  The moaning continues unabated however. 

    Storms have wandered around the district for the last few days.  The back garden has been only lightly wetted, but the allotments wre well soaked from a downpour packing seedbeds tight and flattening potato foliage.  Wet summers are very good for my sandy soil in this dry district, where drought stress kicks in after a only a few, hot, rainless days, but I might think quite differently if I had a heavy clay soil, and had not made the stiff, wet soil into raised beds. 


  • Weed and Feed

    Guy Barter on 25 Jun 2007 at 09:35 AM

    Long days and the sun high in the sky coupled with warmer temperatures mean that June and July are the crucial months for vegetable growers.  Crops will make a huge proportion of their growth in June/July.  But they can only do this if weeds are not out-competing them, they have been adequately thinned, there are sufficient nutrients in the soil and they are protected from pests and diseases. 

    The outbreak of heavy rain in the south in the last week has left ample water in the soil.  Enough in fact to carry crops through into August. 


  • Turn around time

    Guy Barter on 18 Jun 2007 at 10:47 AM

    Over-wintered broad beans, peas, garlic and onions were gathered this weekend and the space they occupied was turned around for the next crops. 

    The beans and peas were rather weedy so after the plants had been pulled up, debris and weeds raked and all material consigned to the compost pit, the plot was covered with black polythene.  I will come back this area at the end of month, when the weeds should be dead, to sow and plant extensively for autumn harvest.  By this time the first of the spring sown crops can be cleared as well, so there should be a large area to plant and sow. 


  • Back from Hols

    Guy Barter on 12 Jun 2007 at 11:35 AM

    After a holiday in Cornwall, I came back expecting the worst, but in fact things are pretty good.   I ‘mauled' anything remotely big enough to plant into the ground immediately after pouring rain before leaving.  Regretfully, slug pellets had to be applied or I would certainly, under these conditions, come back to find nothing. 

    Swedes, purple sprouting broccoli, autumn cauliflowers and winter cabbages and savoys were planted. Pumpkins and squashes were quickly and easily set out in ground previously kept weed free with plastic mulching sheets.