Beany Babies

Christmas has been and gone, it was certainly different this year. Today is my daughter’s 23rd birthday which makes me feel old, due to tier 4 restrictions all our plans and the chance to visit her went out of the window. One place I can visit is the allotment and to be honest I haven’t been able to stay away, a mixture of itchy fingers and checking the plots over for shed casualties due to storm Bella on Boxing Day. Thankfully my shed is still where I left it.

The ground is soggy underfoot so my short visits consist of pottering around holding a mug of tea, looking for signs of life emerging from the soil. Snug under the tunnel cloche the broad beans sown in November are peeking through the soil on Plot 11w, I had wondered if the seeds would rot due to the vast amount of rain since the sowing date, so you can imagine my delight seeing the first green shoots of the new growing season. 

For those wondering about my tunnel cloche, it’s simply a clear roof sheet held in a half circular shape using two metal hoops. Thick bendable wire would work just as well.

A tunnel cloche is very useful, I use mine for the following purposes:

  • Warming soil before sowing seeds
  • Keeping seedlings and seeds safe from cats/foxes disturbing the soil for toileting purposes (yuk)
  • Frost protection and overwintering frost tender crops
  • Preventing pigeons pecking crops and mice stealing seeds (block the ends off)
  • A shield against damaging rain/snow or prolonged spells of wet weather

I hope your Christmas was a merry one.


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