Sunday 6 December 2020

Raspberry Bed Infrastructure IV

The rain stopped and it was still early enough to make it worth while going to the allotment, the new road is still fenced off and one still has to go around the back of the flats to the main gate. Today however there was fencing in front of the allotment gate. 

I parked my car in one of the visitors parking bays to the new houses and went in by foot carrying the couple of buckets of shredded paper and cut cardboard from the last week.

It took some time to shovel and weed the last of the contents of the apple acidic compost from on top of the weed membrane and pull it back to expose the path and bed area. The green tubes on the path mark the outside edges of the bed frame. 

The canes were taken from the bag, separated and put in a large flower pot of water for a soak as the instructions that came with the delivery. I'm using the large flower pot as a lid to a water butt until I can find a better alternative.

I scribed the lines in the surface of the soil and then make a line with the fork moving the soil backwards and forwards and then from side to side to make weakness in the soil so that when I dug the clump of earth sheared more or less where I wanted it too. 

I didn't have time to dig all the path on the left today, so I will go back to the path next visit and remove as much mares tail roots and couch grass roots as possible before laying the weed membrane and covering with a good 2 - 3 inches of woodchips.

The soil was dug and weeded, one half of the frame was brought down and placed over the path area and the other joist was pre drilled and screws put in so that I could screw it in place to make the frame up.

Some measuring and tweaking of levels of the soil under the bed timbers and the bed was in and the newly dug and weeded soil was raked level.

The trugs of acidic compost were decanted into the bed and raked level ready for the  Raspberries to be planted 

I measured and laid out the canes ready to plant along the middle of the bed. then proceeded to plant them one at a time and water them in place. 

View from Main Path Plot 1A looking down onto Plot 1

View from the entrance of Plot 1 looking up at the three raspberry beds, the green pipes are where the fourth bed will go in, but there is no immediate rush for that to happen as I don't have any other fruit or Raspberries on order for the last bed yet, but I do fancy some yellow Raspberries.  

So some clearance of the rubbish along the perimeter of the site needs to happen, problem is with the pandemic getting stuff to the dump is difficult as you have to book a slot and most of what's there is wet and muddy
The earth under the last Dalek need digging and weeding and the path between the last two Rapspberry beds needs installing. The square foot gardening bed timbers need to be cut once the timber has dried out a little and then painted. This view and the fact that I have installed these beds over the last two weeks gives me hope that I will be ready for the start of the season in 2021.

I was expecting Polka (late) Raspberry canes, but when I took the canes out for their packaging for a drink I found that D.T.Brown had actually sent me Raspberry Autumn Treasure Fruit Canes (Primocanes) instead! 

These are not supposed to be shipping until the 8th December 2020

Looking at the web page for this variety, the question "Is this the best late raspberry for the home garden?" and the question is then answered with the following.

Quite a claim but we think this variety, bred at the world renowned East Malling Research centre, is set to be the benchmark for home gardeners.

This quality primocane has a high disease resistance to root rot, wilt and powdery mildew, and crops well even on poorer ground. It gives an exceptional yield of very attractive, large, firm berries from August to October and the fruit stands wet weather very well. 

The flavour is very good indeed - not as acid as Autumn Bliss. Spine free canes. 

D.T.Browns specially selected canes are propagated from disease-free certified stock, and will have well developed root systems when you receive them, so they will establish well and give excellent yield. Floricane varieties fruit on canes produced in the previous year while Primocane varieties produce fruits on current season growth. 

Delivered as bare root canes, and I have to say the root system on the canes was extensive. 

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