Sunday, 3 October 2010

Autumn planting

I don't mind digging in the rain but if the ground gets too wet then you damage it by trampling over it. Please let it stop raining for a while. I still have my onions, garlic and broad beans to put in. Japanese onions can be put in now as they can cope with winter, other onions can't.
Also I've decided not to grow runner beans next year as I really don't like them. That frees up some ground for other stuff. My strawberries didn't do so well - too little rain and I didn't water enough and too much competition from weeds. I may grow them in pots in trays next year or not bother. My carrots did well though some of them were dug up and eaten but at least they left me most of them. At the allotment we have deer, badgers, pheasants, moles and lots of squirrels. I've started some digging but I should really have tried to get more done before the weather gets worse. Crop rotation is doing my head in as some group of plants take up sore space than others or stay in the ground longer. Just need to suss out where carrots are going next year and make sure I don't manure it as they hate it and it makes them fork.
I have some broccolli (well it's calabrese really) coming and have had some nice bits. My butternut squashes are colouring nicely and my Ukrainian pumpkins are enormous- will have to wheelbarrow them home. First year for my Autumn Bliss raspberries- v nice but not loads- possibly because it's the first year.
Still have one row of potatoes to dig up. Had quite a bit of scab again this year- it does affect the flavour. Think it means the ground is too limey and needs to be more acidic.


I've just been asked to be a guest poet locally next month. I'm very excited and nervous. Strangely I'm not that nervous about my poems but about all the chatting you need to do in between. Saw Elaine Feinstein last night and she was fab - so engaging. She spoke so clearly that you didn't miss a word.
Any tips from experienced and inexperienced readers very welcome. It's lovely to have a reason to sharpen up some more of my poems.