Sunday, 1 March 2015

RIP Compost bins! Here's to a new one.... or two....or three.....

One compost bin - to be fair, this one never looked too hot, but now it looks like it's vomitting compost!!!  We could replace and put a new compost bin here, but with the entry to the side where the wall is being perched up by part of a shed floor.

This is compost bin 2, only the roof has caved-in, but we suspect that if we try to move anything, it'll give way on us.  To replace and rebuild here would be a bit difficult as there is a pile of rubbish on the other side (we inherited that and yet to do anything about it).
There are two places that we could put a new compost bin (or three), one is behind the tool box, the other is in the area in front of the toolbox, the other side of the rope (which holds our plastic bottles in winter).

Anyway, this is the other 'arf's job of the year.  I can't be bothered with compost bins when I should be playing in the mud, digging, weeding, planting.  I also fractured, chipped and dislocated my shoulder in December 2014, and it would take me far too long (once I even decided what the best thing to do was).  He's quite happy to have me admit that I have found a problem, and will leave him alone to sort out a solution, using whatever powertools he wants!!!

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Lift Mikhallil - Pickled turnips

My little helper just likes to watch, doesn't eat turnips!
I wasn't able to get to the allotment for a few months (fractured, chipped & dislocated shoulder), and I had told a friend they could help themselves to anything that was ready to harvest. 

I got down there for the first time this week and had quite a few turnips/swedes to harvest.  I wasn't sure how much of them were saveable - you can never tell till you cut them open, because they'd been in so long.

I decided to pickle them, using an Egyptian recipe, so I hope they turn out as nice as I remember when I was there!

The usual disclaimer applies - I fudge recipes, so what actually happened is in itallics.

2kg turnips (2.3kg turnip/swede mix - before top'n'tail)
1 beetroot (didn't have any, sent b/f to the shop for one)
6-8 cups of water (forgot to measure)
3-4 tablespoons salt (used more, because I didn't read the recipe properly!)

Wash turnips & beetroot, scrub well. (turnips needed peeling, b/f came back with 5 precooked beets)  Cut into pieces. 

Sprinkle with salt & leave to sweat for 24 hours (used all salt).

Boil water with salt and put into pickling jar to cool (this is how I ended up using more salt). 

Drain turnips, squeeze gently and put in jars with the beetroot.

Should be ready after 24 hours.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Sunday, 22 February 2015

The annual seed swap

We had our annual seed swap and I think it was the best one so far.  There seemed to be more people than usual, it may have actually helped that the weather was totally rubbish & no one wanted to be out in their allotment!

There is a big write-up on one of the main organiser's blog here if you want to read more about it.

Manx music for us all

Chocolate & Bacon, you say?!
Chocolate Bacon & Beer!

my raffle winnings
Got some potatoes & fartichokes

Friday, 20 February 2015

1st visit of the year - just browsing

I managed to fracture, chip and dislocate my shoulder on 8 December, so this is the first time I'd been able to get to the allotment.  I only took photos this time round, and was pleasantly surprised at the lack of work needed - I'd imagined it a million times worse!  All beds need some work, and if I was back to full health, it's really only a full day's work.  I need to be patient and pace myself, which will be hard.
Dogwood rose (rosehips)

Asparagus bed

Monty frame for beans/peas

3 sisters bed

Strawberries & herbs

Bed 2

Bed 1 - turnips & swede still okay

Bed 3 - bronze fennel ok

Bed 4 - yams & roots ok

Manx Codlin apple tree


Bed 5 - not used yet

Fruit cage

Rhubarb corner

I wasn't expecting a harvest!