17 April 2012

Rhubarb Chutney Relish

Been cropping my Rhubarb.

Made a rather tasty sweet Rhubarb Chutney / Relish - based it on this recipe but added / changed a few bits:


500g Rhubarb
100ml White Wine Vinegar
200g Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
Few Raisins
1 Onion
2 Sticks of Celery
1 Teaspoon of Mixed Spice
Strained Chopped Tomatoes (400g)
1 Teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper

Suggestion: Keep reducing to make a more chutney jam if you like it thicker.
Next time: I might reduce the sugar to try and make it a bit more tart - say use 150g sugar.

Cooking up the Rhubarb

4 Jars Done!

16 April 2012

...and the re-modelling of the plot is complete

Finally finished the re-modelling of my plot using old bricks and pea gravel. IMHO I think it looks great!

Removed bricks and replaced with pea gravel

Pea gravel top path now

Finished new ornamental entrance

Tidy bottom plot

Sweeping curve 

Sweeping curve again

Much neater

Easy access

Clematis arch

Aerial shot (I'm in an apple tree)

Aerial shot of 'the sweep'

15 April 2012

And the remodelling continues...

Been busy remodelling the plot into something a little bit more aesthetically pleasing. Got last bottom plot to do tomorrow

New sweep path around carrot bin

Brick edges

New ornamental entrance

Clematis arch for ornamental entrance

Last bit to do - brick and gravel paths

Brick and gravel paths will neaten this bit up

8 April 2012

Couldn't resist the urge to re-model

Went to Trentham Gardens and saw this allotment:

Allotment at Trentham Gardens
So, inspired by the design and working out I did have 30 ft x 30 ft currently available for remodelling - I did this:

My interpretation of the Trentham design (in brick)
New layout but using existing beds

Used pea shingle for paths

Not much re-modelling needed - just moving bricks

Some feature plants for decoration

6 April 2012

Cool start to April but things getting going!

Been busy on the allotment (on hols!). Did a change around with my greenhouse as the rats were getting in. I made a bigger gap between me and next door's plot and cleared the ground. Dug a trench round the greenhouse and put plastic/wooden batons...that should stop them!!

Allotment open day
Have been asked to do a workshop/presentation/session for this year's allotment open day. Have decided to show off my hanging basket making skills - decided to run 4 x 20 min sessions:

  1. Flower basket - usually fancy bedding type
  2. Nasturtiums basket - edible basket, also doesn't mind a bit of dry
  3. Strawberry basket - trailing fruit will look good and lovely fruit
  4. Half-hardy herbs - this should smell amazing and be drought tolerant
Windy Wednesday
Had a terrible gale on Wednesday that did a bit of damage - blew in 4 greenhouse panels, luckily nothing damaged so popped back in. Other than that the wind simply flattened my fleece tents and re-arranged my plot a bit for me.


New greenhouse arrangement

Lettuce doing well

Red cabbage, Hispi and sprouts

Sweetcorn up (Incredible)

Spare Boards

Green and Purple Basil

Nice but of Thyme


Cayenne Chillis

New greenhouse position

Wind battered Cherry

New header feeder tank for water butts

Salad patch (Lettuce)

Lettuce and Spinach

Fantastic Lettuce

Pear tree in flower


New water butt in middle of plot  - fed by header tanks + hosepipe

Herb strip and carrot bin

Kiwi fruit in bud

Early potatoes in  - radishes coming up

Carrot tent and polytunnel for Parsnips

Attractive red Chard

Mint coming up

Dill or is it Fennel?

Carrots finally arrived

Fleece tents re-erected

Onions doing well

Finally uncovered over wintering Broads

Fruit bushes in leaf

More Dill

Plot shot

Wildlife area plant up