It had been my intention to send out a reminder to have your seed/potato/onion order in at the Trading Hut by last Sunday. Hopefully you didn't need reminding!
Last week I had the help of my Grandson, Jake, who came down from Yorkshire for a 'holiday'. Thanks to him most of the contents of my two outer compost bins are now in the central bin for the final stage of composting. I hope in the spring to have a repeat of the black, crumbly, sweet smelling compost I dug out last month. However, I've realised I forgot to add a sprinkling of the 'manure' from the communal heaps and a handful of the compost accelerator at roughly 6" intervals. I probably need to construct some extension panels to the central bin to contain the last of the material to be transferred and will add the extras then. Perhaps use of my compost aerator tool will help!
Jake also hoed and raked off the weeds from my old potato/cucumber patch ready for me to put on a mulch of 'manure', as many allotmenteers do at this time of year. I actually prefer to use green manure but I ran out of seed of Italian Ryegrass which is the only one that I know of that has a chance of succeeding this late in the year.
I have made sure I will have plenty for next year when I posted my seed order at the Trading Hut on my way up to Yorkshire to deliver Jake home and visit my daughter.
While Jake was doing the heavy work, I got the chance to sow my over-wintering peas.
I have used an idea from a neighbour, Neville, and sowed in clusters of 3/4 seeds every 9" then covered each cluster with a bottomless plastic (milk) bottle. That should protect the plants from the worst of the weather. It might also keep the mice from feasting on the germinating seeds and, just to make sure, I have sprinkled a few drops of paraffin into each bottle. Later I shall add a few slug pellets to each bottle as well.
Finally I managed to clear the jungle of weeds that had sprung up next to my shed. That clears the decks for my winter job of laying the rest of the slabs, dismantling the old wrecked shed and setting up my greenhouse.