Rain again

Every time I’ve tried to get to the allotment this week it’s absolutely chucked it down. I am not at all mimsy or piffling, it takes a complete downpour to put me off, but twice now it’s actually been so heavy that my windscreen wipers haven’t been able to cope.

So I’m hoping against hope that this weekend’s showers will be just that. We need to get our broad beans in at plot 103: they will be our first crop on the new plot. In addition, I want to dig over a bit of ground (can’t dignify it by calling it a bed, to be honest) to plant some radicchio de Treviso which are fantastic winter vegetables, at their best after a couple of frosts and beautifully red and furled when so much of the winter harvest is either white or green.

The problem is that even if I can get up there, our clay-rich soil generally has only two states in winter: as impenetrable as terracotta when dry or as heavy lead when wet. Winter seeds planted when wet tend to rot before you’ve got them properly covered.

We still have more than three-quarters of the new plot to dig, which is daunting, and the old plot to tidy up ready to be handed over when our purple sprouting broccoli, parsnips and kale are finished. Whew – makes me want to take a nap!

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Thursday, October 28, 2010


Anonymous allotments4you said...

sounds tiring...I sure am glad I got all my digging done. I have never heard of radicchio de Trevis....will you be putting this in as seed or seedlings?? where do you get it from as it sounds a nice addition to the winter veg.

October 28, 2010 at 12:11 PM  
Blogger The Allotment Blogger said...

Tanya, radicchio is very prone to bolt if transplanted so it has to go in as seed. It's also very bitter to eat, although the first couple of frosts make it much less astringent - the seed can be obtained from a lot of catalogues.

Look out for tardive in the name which makes it one of the varieties that can be sown in September through to November in mild areas, for winter consumption.

November 4, 2010 at 10:06 AM  

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