Wednesday 1 May 2024

Planning and Reviewing May in Previous Years

Reviewing the diary over the last Eleven years for May

2013 - Spring was the coldest for 50 years, I had the first six beds and the comfrey bed in place.Beds 5 & 6 were Sprouts and Cabbages, as expected lots of sowing and potting on happened.

2014 - Frost warnings and seedlings grown in the grow house inside the green house on Mill Green.Potato Halums were a little frost damaged, Slabs at home laid for the Space Saver Greenhouse, Erected the Space Saver Greenhouse at home and the Double grow House at Mill Green.

2015 - Potatoes in Buckets, transplanting Tomato plants, High Winds and damage on the plots, Cherry Trees have Cherries on them, Planting out Spring Onions, Harvesting Over wintered spring onions, Planting Cabbages and Cauliflowers and the Crimson Crush plants arrive, three more bed frames made.

2016 - Spencer Road - Second sowing of sweetcorn due to slow germination then the first sowing germinated after the first !, Beds 1-3 completed, Potatoes in bed 3. Comfrey bed 2 completed

2016 - Mill Green - overwintered onions in greenhouse planted to replace those that were nobbled by slugs in the beds, Sowing frenzy of beetroots, Spring Onions, Cucumber, Celery, second sowing or brassica's as first sowing died. Frost second week of May. Bean frame maintenance.

2017 Spencer Road Allotment - Working on infrastructure and the watering system for the plot, spuds and onions growing well, Walking Onion infrastructure created. Comfrey Pipe erected.

2017 Mill Green Allotment - Mosquito Nets to Protect fruit on the trees, Brassicas planted, SoilFixer Potatoes in Buckets experiment, Push Lawn mower obtained off Freecycle.

Having two plots on different sites really did have an effect on the overall progress last year, but the additional beds provided more opportunity for sowing and planting a greater range of varieties of vegetables to try  in 2017.

This year the decommissioning of Spencer Road and the Infrastructure works at Mill Green Plot 1 to accept the Shed and Greenhouse has not gone as quickly as I would have liked primarily due to the bad weather we have had in the way of snow and rain, combined with getting Mill Green Plot 1A back into shape as before the drop off and pick up area was created it was difficult to gain access to Mill Green and keep it up to scratch, plus the intention was to move to Spencer Road so the focus was off Mill Green, Its now firmly back on it.
2018 Moving tomatoes from vending machine cups into larger pots, Sown Sweetcorn, Hardening off Tomatoes in the cold frame, Transporting items from Spencer Road to Mill Green Tomatoes transplanted into flower Buckets, Cucumbers & Courgettes planted. Runner Beans & Beetroots started off at home planted. Two Crimson Crush and a Repunzel grown out in the open on the plot, they were left to go wild and become so prolific .Bought an Apex Rotary Sieve from Germany for less that the version from Wales. Radish in cut down flower bucket. Rain & Thunder storms  

2019 - May as always means the Spacesaver Greenhouse heaving with seedlings and everything getting started off so that it can finally be transplanted at the allotment during the end of the month. The framework for the greenhouse was finally assembled with Andy's assistance and Emma & Andy as I was having problems getting down on my knees due to my leg injury. Andy & I planted spuds, Brassica excess supplied by Pauline, Hazelnut tree arrives and is taken to plot and potted up. Cutting and Painting bed timbers continues, Onion Sets planted by Emma, Beetrootrs sown but fail to germinate or are eaten by slugs. Comfrey Pipe cleaned out, Insect Houses bought from Morrisons.  

2020 - Due to Covid and the lockdown I  didn't visit the allotment during May as I was shielding my wife. My daughter and son in law visited and tried to keep the allotment tidy and undertook weed management. All of my growing was done in the back garden.

2021 - Sieving my own compost. All potatoes finally in. High winds and damage on the plot. Apple trees at home pollarded. Rhubarb plants arrived. Sowing Courgettes, Gherkins & Cucumbers. Tomatoes sown early May which was a little late really. Self tapping screws for polycarbonate sheets on greenhouse. 25th May Towel Day, Bought 21 HD Containerwise Plastic trays.  Trimming the Path with the old strimmer and new blades. Lots of grass from Emma for composting. Second SFG bed dug and the bed frame in but never got around to filling it and planting it up.

2022 - Anti Cabbage whites Hoops and debris netting mesh installed, Red Grapevine growing well, Ordered additional spring clips to fix debris netting, Additonal 600mm radius black hoops cut from roll , Sweetcorn sown, Mares Tail weeded from the raspberry paths, Celery Tango planted in SFG Bed, Weed Free Onion Beds thanks to Emma and Walking Onions Planted, Renewing Woodchip Paths, Where is Wally from areal photo of the plot, two lots of paving slabs off Freecycle, Guidance on Pruning a Grapevine, Topping up Potatoes in Buckets, Potatoes in Buckets sown. Seedless Grape vines planted. Swarm of Bees on the allotment.  

2023 - Spuds in Buckets sown, Solar Powered water pump in Pebble Pool installed. Brassicas sown and potted on this month. Sweetcorn sown, Installing the climbing frame horticulture beds. Mares tail attacked in the AFG Beds twice this month. Emma & Andy helped me get a lot of jobs done on the allotment. Apples showing on the trees. Growing Tomatoes for the Grow Off between Westland & Dalefoot. Two MRI Scans during May. First Meeting the the Maxi Facial team CT and MRI Scan results and the investigations into what turns out to be Cancer starts 22nd May 2023. Andy provided four sacks of grass from cutting their lawn. Luffa & Burpless Tasty Green Cucumbers planted in the climbing frame greenhouse Courgettes, Cucumbers & Broccoli plants potted on. Westland Horticulture V Dalefoot Compost Tomato grow off started. Lazy Housewife French climbing beans went into the ground. Melon went in under glass up against the wall, Girls came and weeded the parsnip bed. Drying coffee grounds and making the birdfeeder. Potatoes in Buckets foliage showing. Laying woodchips in the paths to the climbing frame greenhouse. Transplanting Cucumbers into the climbing frame greenhouse. PET Scan at St Georges Hospital 

The weather in April did not improve and that combined with my mobility issues meant that I didn't get as many visits to the allotment as I hoped I would, and a lot of germination of parsnip seeds and transplanting into toilet rolls has happened in doors during April.

I now have some medical boots that will go over my dressings and I'm hoping that I will be able to drive myself down there at least 2 or 3 times a week come May. 

To Do List   

Mill Green - Plot 1A
    Re Add additional supporting timbers to the roof of the shed - TBD
    • Greenhouse 1A - Modify the dormer window and replace.
    • Greenhouse 1A - Modify the frame and door
    • Greenhouse 1A - Set up more Coffee to dry out 
    • Daleks on Bed 5  - Empty and relocate the Daleks - Done 
    • Beer Traps - Set Up Beer Traps - Done some more needed  
    • Bed Near Hotbin  - Clear Netting & Hoops and Vegetation into Hotbin 

    Mill Green - Plot 1 
    • Greenhouse 1 - Modify the dormer window and replace.
    • Greenhouse 1 - Modify the frame and door
    • Raspberry Beds - Make Framework on Beds to hold canes up and keep paths clear.
    • Square foot Garden Beds - Make more Frames and raise the heights of beds for better access.
    • Square foot Garden Beds - Remove the Mels Mix from Bed 2
    • Climbing Frame Greenhouse - Weed and finish of the last arm of the beds internally.
    • Blueberry Ares - Weed and make a base then fence in using spare panel  
    • Tidy Up Behind The Shed - Weed and clear path.
    • Potatoes In Buckets - Plat First & Second Earlies in get the main Crop in ASAP
    • Beer Traps - Set Up More Beer Traps 

    • Planning - Ongoing
    • Space Saver Greenhouse - Clear and Clean then try and sow to the planned schedule.

    Sowing and Planting Plan for May    

    Week 1              Lettuce (Winter) - Sow 
    Week 1              Broccoli (sprouting) late varieties - sow seed bed
    Week 1              Cabbage (summer) - plant out indoor sown plants
    Week 1              Celery - plant out
    Week 1              Cucumber (ridge) - sow seed under cloches outside
    Week 1              Kale (curly) - sow in pots or seed bed
    Week 1              Runner Beans - sow seed in pots indoors
    Week 1              Runner Beans - sow seed under cloches
    Week 1              Tomatoes - begin to harden off
    Week 1              Carrot - sow maincrop seed
    Week 1              Radish – Sow fortnightly
    Week 1              Spring Onions – Sow fortnightly
    Week 1              Lettuce – Sow fortnightly
    Week 2              Beetroot - plant out seedlings sown in pots indoors  
    Week 2              French Beans - sow seed outside
    Week 2              French Beans - harden off seedlings
    Week 2              Onion - plant out seedlings
    Week 2              Potatoes - nitrogen feed fortnightly
    Week 2              Rhubarb- apply mulch
    Week 2              Squash / pumpkins - harden off
    Week 2              Strawberries - mulch around plants
    Week 2              Cucumber  – Sow Party Time 3 plants into the greenhouse 
    Week 3              Beetroot - thin out seedlings
    Week 3              Brussels Sprouts- transplant
    Week 3              Cabbage (spring) - harvest
    Week 3              Cauliflower (autumn) - sow seed in pots
    Week 3              Courgette - Harden off indoor grown plants
    Week 3              Cucumber (ridge) - Harden off indoor grown plants
    Week 3              French Beans - plant out seedlings sown in pots indoors
    Week 3              Runner Beans - harden off seedlings
    Week 3              Swede - sow seed outdoors
    Week 3              Sweetcorn - plant out seedlings sown in pots indoors
    Week 3              Swiss Chard - thin out seedlings
    Week 3              Parsnip – Transplant into loo rolls once signs of germination
    Week 3              Melons – Amarillo Oro - Plant Out
    Week 3              Melons – Sugar Baby - Plant Out
    Week 4              Radish – Sow fortnightly
    Week 4              Aubergine – Plant Out 
    Week 4              Spring Onions – Sow fortnightly
    Week 4              Luffa  - Transplant into pots
    Week 4              Lettuce – Sow fortnightly
    Week 4              Onions Onwards - water in dry conditions
    Week 4              Courgettes - plant out
    Week 4              Parsnip - thin seedlings to 15cm / 6in apart
    Week 4              Radish - begin to harvest
    Week 4              Runner Beans - plant out seedlings sown in pots indoors
    Week 4              Runner Beans - sow seed outside
    Week 4              Shallot Onwards - water in dry conditions
    Week 4              Squash / pumpkins - plant out
    Week 4              Tomatoes - plant out

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