Last week was hot and Friday in particular reached a ridiculous temperature. Sadly, I lost one of my chickens to heat stress despite my best efforts. The weekend was all change, much cooler with heavy rain, and even though it tipped down for most of Saturday the ground is still quite dry.
The lush potato beds don’t seem to mind the lack of rain. Usually I wait for second early potato flowers to fade before harvesting, more often than not I leave them in the ground even longer. However this year I decided to pull the lot up while the plants are flowering. The reason for this is I want smaller potatoes to use with salads rather than the fist-sized tubers I usually get. Charlotte is a salad variety but the tubers can get quite large if harvesting is delayed.
Yesterday I checked a plant to see how they were doing and was pleased to see small golden potatoes.
I harvested all the potatoes and put them into a jute sack to store, there’s quite a lot there so I will share some of my treasure with family who are always happy to receive some fresh homegrown potatoes!
I plan to double crop this bed so it won’t stay empty for long, it will be used to plant leeks that are patiently waiting in pots at home. Another bed I plan to double crop is where the garlic was, I will sow cauliflower soon and plant out during August. This worked really well last year.
The blackcurrant bushes are heaving with ripe berries. Today I picked enough to fill a couple of deep punnets and I will use these to make jam. I plan to enter a jar in our village show this year, the competition in the jam class is very high and my jam hasn’t been placed for a long while. I need to get better at it!
Currently (no pun intended) I don’t use any form of cage or netting to protect the fruit bushes, the pigeons leave them alone on our site. Every year my plot neighbour has a lovely crop of redcurrants without any form of protection from birds, it’s probably the only thing we get away with not covering, strangely!
The heat is creeping in again and towards the end of the week it’s going to be very hot, I probably won’t visit the allotment much other than to water.