Getting crafty on the allotment

I’ve set the date for my book launch. 22 March, 2010 at West Blatchington Windmill, Hove (actually). I’m half-excited, half-scared and insanely busy with preparations. The peas are out in the garden all day, just going into the greenhouse at night in case of frost. And I’ve been busy making ‘things’ which is what I tend to do when I can’t work the plot properly. More of that further down the post!

Chitting Potatoes

If you’ve got seed potatoes and you’re wondering why one chits, the answer is simple. It’s too early to plant them outside in almost all of the UK (that’s why Jersey potatoes are at a premium price, their soil warms up faster than ours so they can plant up to a month earlier) but if you leave them in the bag they will grow long pale sprouts that break at planting time which slows or even stops the growth of the plant.

And it’s really simple – find a frost free place that’s airy and has north light or indirect light (the spare room windowsill is nearly always the right location!) and put the spuds there on a tray or in egg boxes, to grow nice dark, short and stubby sprouts. Remember to label them so you don’t get your first earlies mixed up with your maincrops.

If you live near the coast and have winter storms, you might want to forage some seaweed to lay over them when you do plant out – it’s what our great, great, grandparents did and probably has two purposes: acting as a mulch to protect against a late frost and providing nutrients to the growing tuber.

Plant Labels

The pea markers have worked out really well, OH prefers the plastic ones because they are easier to get into compacted soil, having a point on the bottom, but I’m all for appearance and I think the wooden ones look nicer!

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Thursday, February 17, 2011


Blogger Joanna said...

All the best with the book launch. I love the title

February 17, 2011 at 4:07 AM  
Blogger Nome said...

Wow, can't believe you've got so much growing already! I must get my finger out and make a start!

February 18, 2011 at 5:59 AM  
Anonymous allotments4you said...

Great plant markers...good luck with the book.

February 18, 2011 at 7:32 AM  

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