November has been mostly mild and soggy which means the ground is now truly saturated, the dusty soil of summer long gone. The barmy autumn temperatures are also gone with a frosty start to the week, it certainly feels cold enough for snow and I can feel the shift creeping into my bones, my trusty bobble hat and gloves once again part of my allotment attire. The sky today was hazy white, I kept looking up expecting to see fat snowflakes falling towards me, the fluffy floaty kind that stick to your eyelashes.
Things are finally starting to wind down on the allotment, the freezer is stuffed full of beans and the larder stocked with jams. There’s still plenty of food on the plots now and over the coming months. Unfortunately (for me) voles have found the carrots, having this knowledge makes me question my judgement for sowing broad beans alongside them recently. I’ll sow more seed elsewhere just in case. I planted garlic this month too and I’m hoping the little underground assassins don’t find it pleasing on the palate.
Cabbages planted out in summer are looking great, along with huge cauliflowers. Both clearly loving the heavy rainfall this month.
I thought the kale plants had perished during the summer drought/scorching temperatures (they certainly looked very sorry for themselves), but they have all risen from the ashes and look very healthy indeed. The risk of butterfly eggs is over now but I keep brassicas under netting over winter to prevent pigeons stripping everything, not so important for Brussels sprouts unless you savour the tops.
In May I planted out asparagus plants raised from seed sown in February, I’m pleased to say they are absolutely thriving.
I think the plants may be a little confused by the very mild temperatures this month and still actively pushing spears up. Just look at the thickness of them already! Asparagus beetle were a problem during summer, it was a case of being vigilant and picking off the adults, eggs (which are tiny) and larvae as much as possible.
The weather reports cold temperatures sticking around, even the possibility of snow for some areas. Brrrr!