Thursday, 28 July 2016

A year on the allotment: July 2016

July featured some of the hottest days of the year so far. The warm weather means our crops start to reach peak production. It also means more trips to the allotment to water the plants...which I don't mind as it's better than going to a gym.

This year we've had our first crop of blackcurrants. We've picked loads and I've heard people talking on Instagram about it being a 'good year' for blackcurrants. They are certainly very juicy. I made an apple and blackcurrant crumble with some of them, it was delicious. I don't think I've ever eaten fresh blackcurrants and it packed a real taste punch. Magoo declared the crumble was 'too tasty'...which I think is a thumbs up!

It's also the first year our Gooseberry bush has produced fruit. We've had lots of fat, juicy gooseberries which I made into a compote to pour over fresh yogurt.

Summertime means plenty of people are out and about at the plot. It's always lovely when someone passes on some of their vegetables to us. This year our broadbeans have been virtually wiped out by slugs and black fly. They look so moth eaten and only have a few tiny bean pods hanging off the sides. One of our neighbours felt sorry for us and handed me a bagful of broad beans from his plot. He also gave us a bunch of freshly picked radish. We have some growing on our plot too, but I never like to turn down free veg...

The community aspect of allotmenteering features in my five ways an allotment makes family life better blog post. In my opinion, allotments are one of last true community spaces we have in towns and cities. They are open to all, affordable and act as a green space in urban environments.

Thankfully, the peas Magoo planted in her raised bed have produced lots of pods. The broad beans in her raised bed have fared better than the ones planted out in the main beds. We've been picking a few pods each time we go to the plot. Popping peas straight out of the pod and eating them raw is one of the best perks of growing your own food.

July marks the month when the allotment beds are full to bursting. At this point in time we currently have the following crops growing on the plot:
- Parsnips
- Broad Beans
- Celeriac
- Beetroot
- Sprouts
- Potatoes
- Strawberries
- Butternut Squash
- Runner Beans
- French Beans
- Peas
- Raspberries
- Tayberries
- Rhubarb
- Sunflowers

We've managed to squeeze in quite a few after-school trips to the plot with Grandma. It's always lovely to catch the last of afternoon sun and Magoo loves running around after being in class all day. We're now in the first week of the school holidays and we're planning a visit to the allotment later today. Hopefully there will be more peas to pick...

This week I'm linking up with these lovely blogs:

"Making Home" over on www.mrscraftyb.co.uk

"Country Kids" over on www.coombemill.com

6 comments:

Coombe Mill said...

All your hard work over the year is really paying off. the allotment is looking amazing and look at that long list of things you are growing! Blackcurrants are delicious and gooseberries if you can be patient and wait for them to ripen. The beans look wonderful too. I love that it has become a family passion from Grandma to Magoo. It is a wonderful way to enjoy the outdoors. I could really do with some tips from you, even my tomato plants have run away again this year here.

thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

Zeens and Roger said...

I'm envious of your plot! It looks lovely. Kids always enjoy getting stuck in, dont they?!
I just have a couple of raised beds in the garden. I've stuck to the usual suspects this year: runners, mange tout and courgettes are my main crops (hopefully I'll have purple sprouting come winter but in the last few weeks it has been drowning in butterflies laying their eggs). #MakingHome

pixiedusk said...

Goodness your harvest looks so amazing! The fruits and veggies are SO fresh! And I can think of so many dishes where to put them too!

I have a friend who has got an allotment and would give me some of her harvest as its a lot!

#countrykids

Elaine Livingstone said...

How lovely to be getting not only fruit and veg from the allotment but fun and exercise as well. How nice that you had some beans passed onto to you, I am sure you will have an excess of something else to pass on.
The work put in is worth it for the great home grown taste. Have to say I do not like gooseberries but love blueberries. #countrykids

Samantha Free said...

Wow this is wonderful! How nice it must be to eat all of your own vegetables and be rewarded for all your hard work. I try to buy organic ones but have only just learnt to grow cress in the kitchen, so I am a long way off something like this! Very envious! We have also had s big problem with slugs and snails in our garden this year- so much rain and warm temperatures and they have flourished :-( #CountryKids

Mrs Crafty B said...

I really do love these updates and I have real allotment envy! I have been getting a bit more into doing our garden but Hubby B has given up on growing veg. We have raspberries, strawberries and herbs. You have done such a great job! #MakingHome

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