It’s Hot down at the Plot

Do you know the musical “Annie” where she sings “The sun’ll come out tomorrow”?  Well, I’ll be singing that for the next six months as I work my allotment in the heat. The mercury is rising here in Brisbane, Australia.

29° Celcius today and 32° tomorrow, same as last Wednesday, and we are only in the first month of spring. We are yet to hit the high humidity of summer.

So that’s the challenge over at the allotment. I try to get over there before it gets too hot, and I had to pack up the tools at 10am yesterday.

So, I arrived there early yesterday morning, wielding The Seriously Big Fork, dug up a couple of old woody broccoli plants who had fed me regularly for the last few months. And I dug up a few utterly exhausted silver beet (chard) that had also produced like mad all through our winter. The silver beet may have been exhausted but they still provided my dinner as they valiantly pushed up the last of their bright green leaves before I did the kind thing, dug them up, and moved them reverently to the compost heap.

IMG_3211

Now THAT’S silverbeet. This pic was taken a few months ago at the height of the harvest.

Now that is what leaves me humble as a gardener.  Those few plants I had removed were tiny seeds just a matter of months ago and had provided me with so much food for my dinner plate you wouldn’t believe.

I still have plenty growing in my allotment. Some more silver beet and broccoli, plenty of Cavolo Nero black kale, plenty of kohl rabi, lettuce, Chinese cabbage, lots of robust curly parsley, thyme, oregano, spring onions, and the whole of my garlic harvest which will be ready in the next few weeks. The leaves are just starting to die off.

I’ll drive over to the allotments early again this morning and do a bit more. As I clear the ground I’m digging in organic fertiliser, compost, and blood and bone ready for new planting.

Happy gardening.

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16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. horticulturalhobbit
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 06:19:19

    Jean! How lovely to see you back, have missed you!

    Reply

  2. tootlepedal
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 07:50:57

    We are headed in the opposite direction of course but I don’t envy those spring temperatures.

    Reply

  3. Kathy
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 08:16:55

    I think it’s going to be a hit summer alright. Maybe some shade cloth might come in handy for the veggie patch this season. I need to get back in to my patch this week. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Oct 07, 2014 @ 14:47:20

      Hi Kathy. I will certainly erect some shade cloth if I try to grow lettuces, they bolt so quickly in the heat of our summer. Seems crazy really that we can grow lettuces in the winter and when we really want salads in the summer they bolt.

      Reply

  4. Maria
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 09:07:15

    Yep! The weather is certainly heating up. Sounds like you’ve had a wonderful harvest throughout the winter and early Spring. If I forget to put mesh over the bed of potato plants in the evening, the female bush turkeys dig it up in the early morning…which they did early this morning 😦 Sadly they dug up a large zucchini plant as well! And the possums have developed a taste for tomato plant leaves this year which they enjoyed again last night as well lol!

    Reply

  5. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 14:51:17

    Maria I have been really pleased with my harvest this season, I’ve had the allotment for over 3 years now and I’ve been feeding the soil with anything I can get my hands on and it seems to be paying off. Sorry to hear about your bush turkey and possum problem. Maddening, and I know a lot of folk in Brisbane having to deal with the same thing. I just battle with the dreaded fruit fly!

    Reply

  6. MrsYub
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 16:27:13

    I am amazed you are so hot already! We are two hours out of Melbourne and it’s barely been getting over 20 here!
    That is amazing silverbeet! I’m letting some of mine go to seed, as I’m going to have another ash at seed keeping, working on the assumption I’ve gotten rid of that pesky mouse!!
    Are you going to garden over the summer this year?

    Reply

  7. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Oct 07, 2014 @ 16:42:59

    Mrs Yub I’m not sure whether I will plant the allotment up for the summer, but I will continue to garden either way as I will volunteer in the community garden. I enjoy working in the community garden with the other volunteers as it’s a nice social thing to do, and I keep up with veggie growing.

    Reply

    • MrsYub
      Oct 14, 2014 @ 19:58:57

      We are starting a community garden here in our town, and I will be doing that, too 🙂
      Are there many people involved in your community garden?

      Reply

      • Allotment adventures with Jean
        Oct 15, 2014 @ 07:04:47

        Every Wednesday morning we get about 35 volunteers turn up to work on the community garden, it’s a great social event as we sit down for morning tea at 10am and it gives us the opportunity to discuss the work on the farm/community garden.

  8. narf77
    Oct 08, 2014 @ 04:30:40

    Gorgeous stuff Jean :). I am so looking forward to getting some silverbeet this year after the possums ate it all last year. Now that Sanctuary is sorted out and possum proofed we can get into some serious growing and that is a very exciting prospect. I planted out 2 kinds of tomatoes, 2 kinds of chillis, Asian finger eggplants (our season isn’t long here), tomatillos and artichokes the other day and will be planting out my silverbeet and spinach straight into the ground. I haven’t ever been so excited to get into the garden and planting as I have this year. Your garden has been going gangbusters and you are right, it really does humble you to see those valiant plants working so hard to grow 🙂

    Reply

  9. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Oct 08, 2014 @ 05:47:49

    I’m thrilled for you Narf. At last you can plant your food and know that it will end up on your plate and not in the possums belly! Sounds like you have planted a wonderful array of veggies. You and Steve took on a huge job building the sanctuary and I reckon you are already seeing the benefit because you know that the little seedlings will grow to be BIG:)

    Reply

  10. Ruth (MrsW)
    Oct 08, 2014 @ 07:03:54

    Wow you must be in for a hot summer! We are still waiting for our spring weather to appear, it’s quite cold in NZ and we seem to be suffering from a lot of wind over the last few weeks and some heavy rain showers. I love the silverbeet photo!

    Reply

  11. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Oct 08, 2014 @ 07:28:03

    Hi Ruth. I would love some of your rain. We’ve had little rain for months now. I love the silverbeet photo too. I was lucky that another gardener was around to take the photo. Sometimes as gardeners you struggle with the disease and bugs that want to get at your veggies – so it’s nice to celebrate the joys.

    Reply

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