A new growing season

At last there will be something to write about happening over at the allotment now that we are starting our best veggie growing season here in Brisbane after a long hot summer.

The big change this year is that I have taken on a second allotment, again.  I used to have two but last year decided to cut back to one in 2014 but it left me feeling “land challenged” when I had to decide what to plant in such a small area – 8 square metres.  Mind you, the result was rather pretty as you can see from this pic I took at it’s growing zenith. (Love using that word!)

IMG_4316

I made the decision to leave my allotment fallow over the summer (as a preventative measure against heat stroke – mine, not the veggies) so I covered it in a thick layer of horse manure from the adjoining paddock, and then a thick mulch of straw and left it for the worms to work their magic.

Nevertheless I found that some things revel in the heat despite my neglect.

I was given a few snake bean seeds by my allotment neighbour and in a state of summer lethargy stuck my finger in the ground (5 times) and popped in a seed, and left them to it. This is what happened.  I reckon Jack is living at the top.

IMG_5240

Those five seeds have kept me in beans for months. It’s an interesting plant, the beans grow up to a yard long in the tropics, mine certainly reach 35cm and would grow longer if I left them, but I like them young.  Prolific isn’t the word!  A big bunch every couple of days. I’ll be doing my own seed-saving so I can pass on the seeds.

This weekend I’ll be over at the lottie putting seeds into the ground  …. and picking beans.

Happy gardening.

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13 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. tootlepedal
    Mar 28, 2015 @ 09:22:05

    A bean feast!

    Reply

  2. Kathy
    Mar 28, 2015 @ 12:23:56

    You’ll love having full beds again and I agree this summer has been very hot. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane

    Reply

  3. narf77
    Mar 28, 2015 @ 17:34:15

    Hi Jean, great to see you back. Is it starting to cool down a bit up there? It’s 6C overnight here at the moment and we have lit Brunhilda again for another season. This is when I get to sit back and watch your lovely allotment garden all over again. I hope you had a lovely summer 🙂

    Reply

  4. lundygirl
    Mar 29, 2015 @ 05:43:20

    Looks fantastic! Are the orange flowers marigolds? My plot is just starting off as yours is heading towards autumn but we are sowing seed at the same time!

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Mar 30, 2015 @ 15:14:25

      Yes Lundygirl, the orange flowers are marigolds. I am told they are good to plant amongst the veggies to keep the ‘bad’ bugs away. I find the winter is my best growing season as it’s a real challenge in our summer, so many bugs and I can’t garden in the heat. So I’m very excited about my planting and sewing seeds. I see from your blog that your garden is ‘wakening up’. Takes me back to when I used to garden in the UK. Thank you for visiting. Jean

      Reply

  5. Fairy
    Mar 29, 2015 @ 06:11:08

    Hi Jean, the summer has been really harsh – even up here on the mountain we have had very little respite. The showers of rain have been good and I have planted the first seedlings.

    I love the sound of the snake beans – I might have to get some seeds. My favourite beans are ‘Purple King’ – I planted some saved seed about a month ago and they are already starting to flower.

    I am looking forward to hearing more about your garden over the coming months.

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Mar 30, 2015 @ 15:19:22

      Hello Fairy, lovely to hear from you. I am excited about starting up with planting my seedlings and scattering the seed. The other day I put in a few kale seedlings and when I went two days later they had been decimated by some bug or other. My allotment neighbour – we had shared the seedlings – had the same thing. So I have scattered kale seeds and I’ll try again. Fortunately the beans are still producing like mad so I won’t starve! I will be saving some snake bean seeds and happy to let you have some if you want to try them next summer. I have to wait until the plant dies down first, but there will be plenty to share.

      Reply

  6. kmfinigan
    Mar 29, 2015 @ 07:22:01

    Ill confirm the comments about the summer – even in my cooler part of NSW its been harsh, not just the heat but the thunderstorms. And its glad to see you getting back into the garden! There really is nothing like a good spot of growing early in the season! Heres whats going on at my place if you’re interested – http://bit.ly/18z5HNh

    Reply

  7. Allotment adventures with Jean
    Mar 31, 2015 @ 06:12:28

    Thank you for the link to your blog Kathy. Good to read what is happening in your garden and your recipes and preserving tips. I am enjoying getting back into the garden. I get great pleasure from getting my hands in the soil and wielding the big fork. Started planting this week so at last I have something to write about.

    Reply

  8. Jem @ Lost in Utensils
    May 23, 2015 @ 14:18:58

    Those beans! A great example of how a few seeds can produce so much food. PS: I’m jealous.

    Reply

  9. Allotment adventures with Jean
    May 23, 2015 @ 16:08:33

    Jem, those snake bean plants have given enough to feed a small nation during our last hot Brisbane summer.
    I plan to grow them again next year, but I’ve had to move their climbing frame (with great difficulty) to another part of the allotment so I don’t encourage disease.

    Reply

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