A busy day at the allotment

I had a busy day at the allotment yesterday. There is always the weeding and the harvesting to do but this time I wanted to clear out some old crops and do some fresh planting.

I had nothing pressing so thought as the weather was absolutely perfect in Brisbane, clear, sunny and not too hot it would be a lovely way to spend the day.

Upon arrival I had a good chat with my allotment neighbour Tim and admired his sweet potato patch. He showed me the bags of sweet potato he had harvested that morning and I just hope his wife has her recipe book out because I know who is going to have to deal with them. He was generous enough to give me a couple of these wonderful tubers – I love sweet potato, especially roasted in the oven. I was able to reciprocate with my crunchy radishes.

Then a couple of visitors to the farm rocked up and questioned Tim and myself about how you go about getting an allotment. They were a nice couple and that took a while of course. And they left us with a possum joke – see my earlier post.

Time eventually to get down to work. I started by ripping out the wizened pea plants. I was still able to harvest the last of the peas but basically they had done their dash. The cherry tomato plant was in the same state so out it came, but not before I had gathered the last of the little tomatoes. I am going to cook them tonight in my pasta sauce.

Then I got my big fork out and turned the ground over. Not sure what will be planted there yet, I need to feed the soil first anyway.

The next job was to weed the whole plot (I only have 16 square metres so it’s not a scary job to tackle).

By the time I had finished the weeding it was time for lunch. This meant a trip to Bunnings (hardware store) and their weekend sausage sizzle. Stuff I don’t normally eat but tasty as all get out. They slap a sausage onto a piece of white bread, smother it with fried onions and then you add a generous squirt of the sauce of your choice. Tomato, barbecue or mustard. I noticed one particularly adventurous diner eating his swimming in both tomato and mustard sauce. It cannot be done elegantly as he was able to display! I have a theory that the reason folk visiting Bunnings at the weekend wear their daggiest clothes is not because they are taking a break from the gardening or the DIY jobs – it’s because they don’t want tomato sauce on their best clothes.

I got off lightly at Bunnings’ gardening department on this occasion, buying only a punnet of Rainbow Silverbeet.

Back at the allotment I planted the silverbeet then used the farm’s watering cans to give a good dose of liquid fertiliser around the plot. The last job was to get out the camera ….

Weeding done and liquid feed watered in

Rainbow Silverbeet seedlings planted and watered in

Hollow Crown parsnip plants just popping up their heads

Baby Beets looking a bit straggly, hopefully they’ll pick up as I’m planning to pickle them – I have the jars and vinegar at the ready but looks like I’ve got a bit of a wait.

The curly parsley’s looking good

A pansy just starting to bloom up the corner of the allotment

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5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Patangan Stickman
    Jun 18, 2012 @ 15:49:28

    I went to Bunnings on Saturday with my two boys – $150 of timber, sheeting and hardware for Jerry’s new Art Shop. We forewent the sausage roll for a change, and this time had a coffee and biscuit at the cafe inside. Nice, but it didn’t hit that ‘primal’ rush you get from eating on the run.

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Jun 18, 2012 @ 18:05:44

      The one thing going for the coffee shop, against the sausage sizzle, is that if you dine in the coffee shop you don’t end up having to wipe your tomato sauce hands down your T shirt so you can drive home!
      Going back to the Art Shop table – it sounds like it’s going to be pretty spectacular.

      Reply

  2. narf77
    Jun 26, 2012 @ 08:42:45

    It’s a sad cold winters day for vegetarians at Bunnings I can tell you Jean! A chunk of white bread with a few onions isn’t the same… Love your garden photos and it certainly gives me a bit of winter cheer down here in Tasmania. I wonder if we can grow sweet potatoes here? They grow them in New Zealand and its MUCH colder than here…might have to look into that as I LOVE roasted sweet potato…sweet potato soup…sweet potato bread…about the only thing I can’t stand is how Americans use them in desserts! No idea why adding marshmallows can make their delicious natural sweetness any better ech! I love to roast them along with plenty of garlic heads and toss them through a simple barley pilaf absolutely stunningly delicious (but stay away from me the day after as garlic is the order of the day! 😉 ). Cheers for another lovely post Jean…I love reading about your adventures in your allotment and am really grateful to the blog that sent me here in the first place through one of your comments 🙂

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Jun 26, 2012 @ 10:05:56

      Thank you for your lovely comment. I think Bunnings should come up with a vegetarian alternative. They would certainly get more ‘diners’ that way. I agree that a slice of white bread which has absolutely no health giving properties, with fried onions is not going to cut it at all. I am not sure if you can grow sweet potato in Tassie. Funnily enough we had a huge bed of sweet potato in the community garden here and it did no good. It looked really lush but there was nothing growing underneath. Yet my allotment neighbour who is only a few yards away from the community garden planted three sweet potatoes in his 8 square metre allotment and he had bags of the stuff. Mother Nature has her little jokes doesn’t she!

      Reply

      • narf77
        Jun 26, 2012 @ 14:23:50

        Yes she most certainly does! Especially when you are experimenting and you end up not liking what you grow…its usually the ONLY thing that you get heaps of (Murphy’s law 🙂 )

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