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So what will I be growing on Plot 76 during 2015?

Hello and happy February.  How is the weather in your part of the world?  Are you itching to start sowing?  I know I am!  Today it rained, snowed, sleeted, hailed, but the sun also shone at regular intervals.

It’s the time of year, when I start to think about what I want to grow and more importantly what I want to EAT!!  I’m addicted to food blogs at the moment.  They have inspired me to make more of an effort to record the range of recipes I create using the fruit and vegetables I grow and forage.  So far I’ve tended to write about making jam, and will continue to do so, but it would be nice to talk about something else!

But first planning.  This will be the first year of allotmenting where I’m ready to plan more precisely what and where I will be growing.  I’ve got five large beds.  I’ve already begun planting the alium bed, and the others are sufficiently cultivated they’ll be ready for planting in March.   This year I will start a four bed rotation, with an additional fruit bed crammed full of raspberries and strawberries (for my love of jam).  I have the space, so why not!

Too many seeds?

I’m lucky, Dad was given a huge box of free seeds from a local garden centre because they were past their sell by date.  He let me take my pick.  I’ve listed the seeds I plan to under each bed.  I hope to experiment a little and see what grows best on my plot.

Bed One: Aliums

Last year this bed was part fallow, part not a very successful Brassica bed.  I’ll be planting shallots, garlic, red and white onions, and hopefully some other fancy onion varieties, as well as leeks, and spring onions.  In November I planted shallot sets, and in December I planted two types of garlic, solent white and an Elephant garlic.  Both the shallots and garlic are only just starting to peek out of the ground.  I’ve decided to sow the onion sets in modules in the greenhouse as they soil is still quite wet. I’ve also sown some onion seeds, which is a first for me.

  • Leek: King Richard
  • Leek: Nipper
  • Leek: Mussleburgh Improved
  • Leek: Autumn Giant
  • Onion: Red Barron (sets)
  • Onion: Stuttgarter (sets)
  • Onion: Long Red Florence (seeds)
  • Shallots
  • Garlic: Solent White
  • Elephant Garlic
Bed Two: Legumes

Last year this bed was a mix of roots, aliums, potatoes, and other!  The poor soil quality became apparent very quickly, as very few beets grew, and the squash plants produced little fruit.  At the end of the season I sowed a mixed seed green manure.  Only the mustard seeds germinated.  Once I’ve cut this down, and dug it in, the bed will be ready for planting.

I started off some broad beans last weekend, and plan to sow more to ensure I get a long cropping period.  I will also grow a few varieties of runner beans, and a large patch of Borlotti beans.  I’ll plant these at opposite ends of the bed to hopefully prevent cross-pollination.  I have way too many varieties of runner beans, so I will do a bit more research and narrow it down to 2-3 varieties.

  • Broad Bean: Bunyards Exhibition
  • Broad Bean: The Sutton (dwarf)
  • Pea: Cavalier
  • Pea: Ambassador
  • Mangetout: Shiraz
  • Asparagus pea
  • Borlotti Bean
  • Runner Bean: Celebration
  • Runner Bean: Sonesta
  • Runner Bean: Streamline
  • Runner Bean: Red Rum
  • Runner Bean: Enorma
  • Dwarf French Bean: Flajoy
  • Climbing bean: Goldfield
Bed Three: Brassicas

This bed contained legumes, sweetcorn and more squashes, but will be the brassica bed this year.  I plan to grow lots of kale, as I love it, and it’s easier than broccoli and cabbage.  I’ve not been successful very with either in the past.  I’ve always forgotten to grow Brussels sprouts as well.  Hopefully this year will be the year of the brassicas!!!

  • Cabbage: Offenham 2
  • Broccoli: Early Purple Sprouting
  • Broccoli: Romanesco
  • Brussels Sprout: Falstaff
  • Brussels Sprout: Petit Posy
  • Kale: Scarlet
  • Kale: Nero do Toscana
  • Kale: Dwarf Green Curled
  • Radish Mooli: Neptune F1
  • Radish Mooli: Tsukusk Spring Cross F1
  • Radish: Vienna F1
  • Kohl Rabi: Blusta
  • Sweede: Champion Red (Heirloom)
Bed Four: Potatoes and Roots

This bed was fallow last year, and quite compacted.  I’m hoping by potatoes they will cultivate the soil form me.

  • Celery: Martine
  • Carrot: Chantenay Red Cored
  • Carrot: Altas
  • Carrot: Nigel F1
  • Beetroot: Cardeal F1
  • Beetroot: Mixed variety
  • Potato: Swift (First Earlies)
  • Potato: Charlotte (Second Earlies)
  • Potato: Cara (Maincrop)
Bed Five: Fruit

The fruit bed contains strawberries, raspberries, red currents, gooseberries, rhubarb, and will also have a line of globe artichokes.  I will need to create a flexible cadge, as hungry birds stripped the red current bush in seconds after it ripened last year, and although I like birds – those currents are mine!.

  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries: Autumn Bliss
  • Gooseberries
  • Red Current
  • Rhubarb
  • Globe Artichoke
Other

So I also have a long list of cucurbrits, Solanaceae, salad leaves and herbs but I will save them for another post.

Its been fun reading what other allotmenteers are growing.  I would love to hear from other fruit and veg growers too.  Here are a few of my favourite drawn plans – I think I will give this a go

All the best

Jo Plot 76

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2 Comments

  1. Looks like you are going to have a very productive year. Once we have bought the seeds and dug the ground all we need is for the weather to follow it traditional seasonal pattern.

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