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New Allotment... Maybe...
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tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:17 pm    Post subject:  Reply with quote    

Leeks definitely, brilliant to grow. So you don't need to water your beans?

First attempt last year, just dwarf Frenchies they did well, no comparison to the shop bought stuff.

Definitely don't grow courgettes/cucumbers/squashes unless you've got the time to water.

I'd grow some caraway, cumin, coriander and fennel (non bulbing), just let them go to seed and dry out. Much more pungent than shop bought spices.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Behemoth wrote:
New Potatoes
Parsnips
Salsify
Scorzonera
Beetroot
leeks

easy to plant direct and then just an occasional weeding and thining.


Beetroot sometimes does really well here, but I've had one crop mysteriously vanish overnight from the garden (and be replaced by lots of snail trails). Parsnips are going to be a must... What are their watering requirements?

Quote:

The following can be started in pots and planted out, or planted direct and just left to it with the occasional weeding.

Cover these with netting to stop birds/butterflies
Cabbages
Brussels
Kale
PSB


Kale and cabbage will be a must I think, if I can only get down to keep them watered.

Quote:

You just have to be around to harvest these
Sweetcorn
Broadbeans
French beans
runner beans

Anything that says few pests or stands well in the catelogue description is usually a good bet.


Thanks for the advice... Most of those I've grown, but always in the back garden where I can be on hand to pick off beasties, water, weed, etc. Managing an allotment is going to have to be less 'touchy feely', but I'm keen to have a go anyway

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

tahir wrote:
Leeks definitely, brilliant to grow. So you don't need to water your beans?

First attempt last year, just dwarf Frenchies they did well, no comparison to the shop bought stuff.

Definitely don't grow courgettes/cucumbers/squashes unless you've got the time to water.

I'd grow some caraway, cumin, coriander and fennel (non bulbing), just let them go to seed and dry out. Much more pungent than shop bought spices.


We have fennel and coriander in the garden anyway (more useful having herbs close to the kitchen, I think). But I've never grown cumin and caraway, I've only used the leaves. Do they work well as kitchen herbs rather than spices?

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cab wrote:
I've never grown chick peas. Should I use the dried ones I normally sprout? What are their growing habits?

Fenugreek... Whats it useful for?


Normal chick peas will grow fine, if it's cool when you sow them just sow as is, if it's warming up soak overnight before planting, they grow very low, and have lovely (edible) foliage.

Fenugreek leaves are a great addition to most curries, pakoras and a whole host of Indian recipes, the seeds are useful too, so it's useful even if it bolts. They have a "curry" kind of flavour

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cab wrote:
I've never grown cumin and caraway, I've only used the leaves. Do they work well as kitchen herbs rather than spices?


I've never used the leaves only the seeds which I use liberally, coriander and cumin especially are indispensible in my kitchen. And we've always used a fennel seed tea instead of gripe water for the kids.

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cab wrote:
Parsnips are going to be a must... What are their watering requirements?


Minimal

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Thanks guys... I've got more to think about now

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cab wrote:
Onions CAN be really easy, but it's dry around here so they've got a tendency to bold (damn them). Any suggested varieties that are less bolty?


They reckon heat treated sets don't bolt

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Heat treated sets? I shall investigate thanks.

Growing onions on my native Tyneside used to be so much easier. Shorter warm season perhaps, but a little bit more rain so less bolting. Down here I've found shallots to be a better bet.

gavin



Joined: 10 Feb 2005
Posts: 93
Location: Leeds, W Yorks
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Just one random thought on choosing low-maintenance veg - grow chard (rather than spinach - bit earthy to eat raw in a salad, to my taste, but great to cook as a replacement for spinach; and much more reliable and easier to grow).

Other than that, it's not so much your choice of veg - they'll all need a bit of care at times, and grow happily at others, depending on weather and season?

It's the allotment "conveniences" that'd I'd look at

- Access! How far do you have to barrow stuff (my huge load of manure - 150 yards away - learn by your mistakes!)?

- Water - can you use a hose? Is the water source very close? Do you have 2-3 barrels you could link up with a hose siphon so you're not carrying water so much?

- And the soil - partly what it is (clay = VERY heavy work but fertile; sand = lots of work and maintenance; a fertile loam - easy, less work, and good fertiity); and partly how you get the allotment - clearing an overgrown plot is hard work.

See if you can take on half a plot, with an option to take over the other half if it's working out well?

Good luck - Gavin

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

And remember to post the local societies details too.

Treacodactyl
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 25697
Location: Jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 6:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

If they get established pumpkins would be worth a try. We still have some ripe ones overwintering.

Being on chalk we've found onions tend to bolt but shallots grow better and are less prone.

Good luck, if there are any nettles you'll know what to do.

Bugs



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 10744

PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 05 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Ermm...have an idea for some articles on the main site along the line of allotments...there've been three threads I'd like to pillage (or have pillaged)

- this one (easy/low maintenance crops for the allotment)
- Cab's "interesting veg to try"
- Sugarplumhalle's (I think?) what to plant on the allotment in general.

Does anybody already have any of these up their sleeve/any thoughts/would like to volunteer to write them up? At all?

Behemoth



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 19009
Location: Leeds
PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 05 9:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

In a fit of romantic stupidity I took the furthest plot from the gate at the highest point of the site because it gives me a distant view of Leeds Town Hall where I got married. It is however a hike to get materials up there and is not near a tap. However I don't think I'd change it now.

In terms of watering stuff I've only been growing stuff for a year and last summer did the watering for me, I found that pretty much everything got my without any assistance, though the french beans could have done with a bit of help. Where I made errors was not in thinning or transplanting at the correct time.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 05 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

gavin wrote:
Just one random thought on choosing low-maintenance veg - grow chard (rather than spinach - bit earthy to eat raw in a salad, to my taste, but great to cook as a replacement for spinach; and much more reliable and easier to grow).


I quite agree; we grow 'bright lights' chard in our garden already, it's great as a combination ornamental and edible plant, and it lasts all winter. The only downer is that it will tend to bolt in the dry.

Quote:
Other than that, it's not so much your choice of veg - they'll all need a bit of care at times, and grow happily at others, depending on weather and season?

It's the allotment "conveniences" that'd I'd look at

- Access! How far do you have to barrow stuff (my huge load of manure - 150 yards away - learn by your mistakes!)?


Errm, these ones are about 2/3 of a mile away, along a straight, flat road; I cycle past them nearly every day.

Quote:
- Water - can you use a hose? Is the water source very close? Do you have 2-3 barrels you could link up with a hose siphon so you're not carrying water so much?


That's going to be a biggy for me, and one I'm going to look at tonight. I want an allotment that is at least close to a water pump.

Quote:
- And the soil - partly what it is (clay = VERY heavy work but fertile; sand = lots of work and maintenance; a fertile loam - easy, less work, and good fertiity); and partly how you get the allotment - clearing an overgrown plot is hard work.


Agreed. I know the soil here now (it's not bad, but it needs lots of organic stuff added to it, it's a tendency to dryness). So it comes down to how much clearing will be needed.

Quote:
See if you can take on half a plot, with an option to take over the other half if it's working out well?

Good luck - Gavin


Cheers Gavin. You've reinforced a lot that I was already thinking about. The idea of taking on a little plot with a vacant neighbour is a nice one too

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