Harvesting, sowing, tending

So Monday was a sad day, last hands-on session of my RHS Practical course at Hadlow.  It’s been really inspirational, well worth the hands on experience of pruning, propagating, sowing, digging, and the conversations with such a diverse group of gardeners.    We have 2 trips out to consolidate the learning, and chat about gardens, but then I have to decide wether I can cope with the Level 3 Practical while also doing the L2 Planning and Maintenance course.  This is the veg plot we planted tended over the past year

Lovely, isn’t it!  

So, on the allotment this week I have finally harvested the broad beans, prodded, blanched, and frozen my crop.  Fantising about broad bean and chorizo salad as the best use over the summer.  BBQ anyone?  Chopped down the tops and popping into the compost bin, and left the roots to do their thing with the nitrogen.  At the other end from the broad beans the courgettes are beginning to swell, and the sweetcorn is thrusting through their prickly leaves.  Lost one of the onions.  The runner beans have been playing host to black aphids, so sprayed with soapy water.  I have also planted dwarf French beans in the gaps.  

Courgettes swelling, sweetcorn doing its thing

In other news, I’m still baffled by the parsnip seedlings.  Partly because by sowing in threes I have little groups of coriander-like leaves, rather than a neat row.   However, I’ve also sown some at home in the mini greenhouse in toilet roll inners which should be easier to spot once planted out.  Carrots are as carrots are, easier to spot so I’m anticipating the carrot white fly to make an appearance any day now!  And you can see how the beetroot is finally swelling next door.  Looking forward to roasting these, black pepper, rosemary, goats cheese sprinkled on top …

Brassicas are coming up, so I’ve sown a further set (purple sprouting, kale, cavalo-de-Nero, cauliflower romescue) are now propagating in the mini greenhouse, the lettuce (Little Gem) and rocket are coming up, and the potatoes are making flowers.  Soon I’ll need to get my first firtling fingers ready …