This blog shows my activities and other people's initiatives. There are also articles that have been contributed.
The photo shows the garden in early May 2013

Sunday, 31 March 2013

New Pages

Take a  look at  'What's happening on the vegetable plot. Don't forget to click 'more' to see the rest.

There are now new pages on this blog. By clicking on the pages link on the right hand side (half way down) you will find a variety of articles.
Page 1 Provides a brief introduction to the editor and an article by the editor on fish keeping
On Page 1a  please note this page has been changed and will be used for summaries of exhibitions and films. A new article can be found on this page by John Boyd on one of the most recent exhibitions at the British Library on the Power  and uses of Propaganda.
Go to page 2 There are articles by John Boyd on Democracy and the EU and a video on the subject..
I have just added a statement by the campaign against Euro- federalism
A variety of articles are posted on my blog they do not necessarily reflect the blog author's views.

On page 3 There is an article by Paul Brecher. my instructor, which is an introduction to the martial art of Pa Kua Chang.
A new article by Paul Brecher has been added to page 3 The Wooden Man Form. For more information on this please contact Paul.
 These have been reprinted by kind Permission of the author. These articles and more can be found on his website:  You will also find information about his classes.
There is now a new article by kind permission of Paul Brecher. This article can also be found on his website.
I have just added a link to The Pau Chui , Cannon fist performed by Paul brecher
Paul brecher has also published a number of books. Two of these can be found on page 3. Go to his website for more details and to see a great deal of fascinating material.

Page 4 Photos from our recent trip to Berlin

Page 6
I have added a new page showing some of the paintings of Matan Peles , a resident of a community for adults with learning difficulties on Kibbutz mahanayim, Upper Gailee, Israel.

I recommend looking at these photos which can be purchased online. Every painting purchased is more support for the community. You can see more of his paintings  on their  url see the link on page 6
Under this article there is an article explaining The Israeli Kibbutz

More articles wanted on a variety of subjects. I hold the right to refuse articles I consider inappropriate and likely to cause offence.

On the Plot

 Many entries have been erased as I have found that the page will not hold a large amount of information.
31rst March 2014
I am on the plots most days. Today I planted some late potatoes and some lettuce.  seed  After that I returned to digging the new plot

5th March
I have cleared and dug about half of the new plot. Once it's finished I will do a light dig again to look for bind weed. I have still been pulling out metal, bricks and wood out of the ground. On one post I had dug a huge pit and not managed to dislodge it so I cut it low using a hack saw and then covered it with a pot and then covered the stump with a plastic pot. I did the same with another post. Both are so deep the rotavator won't hit them. I will be getting a new rotavator.
Currently on the old plots I have planted out: Onions(sets sown last year), garlic (sown Last year), strawberries (from last year), Brassica (under a net Planted out last autumn), broadbeans, potatoes, peas, lettuce (under a cloche. Carrots, parsnips.
My first polytunnel has a variety of salad pots in the raised beds. There are also a variety of seedlings in trays and pots. It would take me ages to list all of them but just as an example there are brassica seedlings, courgettes, cucumber, celery etc., I will not be on the plot  until the 12 th April. Tomato seedlings are being kept in R's greenhouse .
   13th April 2014
The new polytunnel now has back doors . Sowed some purple tomatoes and spinach on the plot.
17th April
I am near the end of digging the new  plot. I have dug  each section at least twice. I have also being putting down bark chippings at the back of the plot as I have been told  that the back there is a path. Yesterday hoed up the potatoes as they were showing signs that they had been slightly affected by the cold.
21 April
The digging has been completed ! I am waiting for the recycled com

New plot; There are already some Brassicae planted under the net. Onions to the side which might hopefully also help  as a deterrent against pests. There is a row of potatoes  in the second section, chicory and fennel.

Yesterday planted tomato plants in the new polytunnel.

planted some Asturian Tree Cabbage today and decided to take a risk and planted some hardy melon seed outdoors. Usually I sow in pots and plant inside. It's all learning. On the oldest plot I sowed some French beans and lettuce between  a row of main crop potatoes.

   courgettes and flowers have been planted around the edges of the new plot . There are oca plants  at the lower end. In addition I have sown various vegetables in the other section.  Today 17th May I will be adding cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. I have also been raising the levels of the main path with wood chippings . I have also learnt more recently to be more cautious about watering young tomato and cucumber plant in the polytunnels and I have been watering every other day.  
30th May 2014
I haven't written for a while as I have been so busy with both old plots and the new one. I have already harvested cabbage from last years planting of spring cabbage. I have been busy planting up the polytunnels with tomatoes cucumbers and some melons. I am waiting for the rest of the melons to grow to a reasonable size. I filled up my barrels with comfrey and some water. I will use this as a fertilizer. I received a lot of compliments from people who visited my plots during the allotment plant sale. We have a new mower onsite and on sunday I will be giving a workshop on it's use as it is rather more robust. Often people are not aware of the basics.                                                                                         
13th June 2014
I haven't added any entries for quite a while as I have been busy with three plots plus two poly tunnels and helping others. The nice thing is that I have start to harvest. I recommend  radish white icicles. Very good cropper. You can now see flowers on some of the rows of potatoes. R recommended removing the flowers to improve the crop . I can see the sense. The tomatoes in the new polytunnel are growing very quickly. Must go.
21rst June 2014
A lot of changes this month. Tomatoes and cucumbers in the polytunnel in flower. Harvested garlic and onions. Dug over the area and rotavated  .Started sowing.

22nd June 2014.
I can't mention all the various things I do when I am on the plot and sometimes I multi task. Some of the main things were pulling out the brussels sprouts plants which showed lack of development. e.g sprouts bursting and not developing. I also removed courgette plants. and planting in the polytunnel where some cucumber plants have been removed.

9th July 2014
I note that I haven't written anything for weeks as I have been so busy on the plot. Amongst so many other things I have harvested onions, garlic, dug up early potatoes, harvested beetroot and much more. I am receiving lots of compliments on the new plot and a small greenhouse is to be erected. On occasion I have assisted in the beehives. I will soon add some photos of the new plot.                                                                                                                             
15th, July 2014
Everything is looking g good but had a disappointment. I had to pull out a large number of tomato plants. One can't know the cause but it probably didn't help that the leaves of  the tomatoes got wet.

18th July 2014 
have been planting more brassicae and sowing in between the rows as I did on the new plot. I moved the pond to the side to free up more land. I have started to prepare some ground on the new plot for a greenhouse on the new plot.
8th August
I have been so busy I just haven't had time to write updates. However the greenhouse is up thanks to the efforts of J and R what I have learnt I won't be going into business erecting greenhouses. it oesn't seem to be my forte'. I will use it primarily for sowing seed. I have also been working with R clearing a plot for a couple. It backs onto one of my plots. I also moved my natural pond.

17th August
The greenhouse is filling up slowly but surely. Transferred some aubergine plants to the raised bed in the greenhouse bed
. It's rather late but it's my way of having a bit of fun and trying things out. I also sowed some mizuna and other salad leaf . I harvested and cleared some brassicae from the  new plot. Cleared some potatoes from the communal compost bins as they can contaminate. Dug out and spread compost טוב                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
25th august
As can be expected someone threw the potatoes back into the compost box before I could collect them. On the oldest plot I have cleared quite a lot ready for winter onion sets. I dug out some old compost and spread it. I have also been sowing in the greenhouse and added some pak choy thinnings which I planted into the greenhouse bed.
29th August 2014
R an J fitted the louvre window which arrived yesterday I am now waiting for a proper stand and potting table. I sowed various things in pots including Japanese cabbage and onions which were given to me by a Japanese woman which I am to share with her. Sowed some choy sum in the greenhouse bed and outside. I sowed onions that grow over the winter on the new plot and then covered them with a net to protect them from being pricked out by birds. I can't possible mention all the things I do but this gives a flavour.

14 th Sept 2014
I have been away for five days on a trip to the Padua (Padova) area, Italy. An organized trip to see Villas Gardens. The highlight for me was a garden Le Paradis des Papillions Their blog is:  well worth a look. 
Today amongst other things I dug out the sweet corn though some had been attacked by squirrels I can't complain. A Japanese pointed out that I had some Japanese squash. I gave her one. She has given me quite a lot of seed and I have returned many to her as seedlings and kept a few back to try. I can't possibly keep up with all my activities though at least it gives a flavour.
30th September 2014
I had to do some catching up having been away particularly with weeding. I took out the rotovator and rotovated some areas on the first plot. Garlic was sown on one of the areas rotovated including Elephant garlic. I gapped up some young kale plants at the front of the plot to make more room. Not something one should do but I am prepared to take chances. I sowed various new things in the new polytunnel such as shisu a Japanese vegetable. I am prepare to take chances as cucumber and tomato plants are removed gradually even with the low light levels at this time of year.  I have some boards coming to raise the level of the first plot and I have decided to turn  over an area on the new area to grow dahlias next year.

17th oct 2014
I have been so busy even now to find time to write. Today I did some serious clearing of one of the polytunnels and sowed salad plus some other things such as propping up pepper plants. I read somewhere that they have a capacity to be perennials. I have also noticed some tomatoes grow back the following year! With another plotholder painted the first coat on boards 10 of which will go round my first plot.
Sowed almost two hundred onion sets and then covered them with a net against birds pecking at them . Once the green stem shows I remove the net. Sowed some cabbage seed and cress in the greenhouse.
21rst The boards to make up the raised bed are now spaced around the plot. Pruned the most vigorous grape vine. Today I did quite a bit of clearing of the first tunnel and planted onion seedling, cauliflower and sowed lettuce. weeded the brassicae section on the second plot and dug up some Parsnip which were a good size including a huge one.