Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Things I've learnt this year.

How long have you got? I'll stick to things I've learnt on the allotment to save time.
  1. Don't sow too many courgette seeds. All of them will germinate and then, being the type of person who hates waste, there will be far too many plants and in turn far too many courgettes. You can have too much of a good thing and you'll discover just how many things can be made with courgettes.
  2. Before protecting brassicas with fine netting, check that cabbage white butterflies haven't already laid their eggs. Otherwise 3 weeks later when you check for weeds underneath the nets you will be faced with cabbage lace.
  3. Remember that rabbits do eat anything that isn't protected including onions and leeks.
  4. Planting French marigolds to deter carrot fly doesn't work if you sow the seeds at the same time as the carrot seeds.
  5. Watch out for the stubs of shrubs that haven't been uprooted yet. They lie in wait and trip you up, especially when you've got a sharp pruning knife in your hand.
  6. Using black plastic for paths is ok, just remember that they become slippery death traps when it has been raining. 
  7. When using liquid comfrey fertiliser, make sure you don't spill it on yourself. The fragrance will  make everyone around you run away covering their noses and will burn itself into your nostrils, so you smell it all day even when you've showered and changed your clothes .
  8. 5 ridge cucumber plants is too many for feeding 2 people.
  9. Shallot sets that are left in the boot of your car will remain usable up to the point that you want to plant them, then they will become soft and squishy, and you'll discover where that horrible smell is coming from.
  10. Tomatoes will not ripen if you leave them hanging from the back of the kitchen chair for three weeks. Instead you'll be faced with the 'What's this puddle of liquid under the chair?' mystery.
  11. And finally, allotmenteering is great fun, you meet great people, get lots of exercise and get to eat the results of your labours.

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