After the gales and heavy rain we had overnight my priority was to finish fixing down the new felt on the roof of my bike shed (my old beach hut, relocated to my back garden). The day dawned fine and dry with a blue sky and a slight breeze, ideal for allotment work but that had to wait until the afternoon after I had completed the shed roof.
After lunch I was able to get down to the plot. I had brought down a bundle of birch twigs, blown off my silver birch in the front garden. They make good supports for flopping plants and some of the transplanted broad beans were struggling to stay upright. It took very little time to remove the net tunnel and prop up the wayward plants. I was pleased that only a few needed propping up though one had gone black at the base of the stem so was pulled up and removed.
My next task was to finish digging the path beside the raspberries to cut off and remove the spreading roots. To control the natural tendency for raspberries to spread I dig up the path either side of the row annually if I can. I start by cutting down the side of the row, preferably with my stainless steel spade which is fairly flat and cuts a straight line. Then I can dig up the path without disturbing the raspberry crowns. I have to be careful to remove all the fine roots as it only takes a thin root to send up a shoot and create a raspberry cane in the wrong place.
When I had finished I then spread a thick layer of horse litter to give a good surface to walk on. If my neighbour at home has collected the pine needles from his garden for me, this makes an excellent path surface for raspberries or blueberries as they rot down very slowly giving an acid humus which they like.
There was a short interval while I was digging while I stopped to watch a large flock of (Common?) gulls fly over. I've not seen such a large group together like this other than at the beach.
As it became a bit chilly I started harvesting. The curly kale had hardly grown since the last picking but the cavolo nero (I've seen it spelled so many ways) gave a reasonable picking. There were quite a few small sprouts of purple sprouting and I dug out two of the thickest leeks.
With bad weather forecast for Friday and Saturday I will probably not get down until Sunday - for the Working Party!