Jun 2011

Harvesting full swing

Despite the interesting June weather (lawn frost was forecast for last night), harvesting is in full swing (ish) with the first couple of courgettes and aspargus having been picked (cooked and eaten) along with the first onions (these sets were planted last year and overwintered under fleece), spring Onions and on-going bags of lettuce, spinach and rocket which are being dispersed to neighbours and friends.

The rocket is being processed into pesto at home and various jars of slightly different recipes are now filling the fridge.
The basic ingredient is a bag of rocket which is washed and dried with flowers and large stalks removed. Put a few garlic loves into a food processor along with some parmesan cheese and some nuts (pine, walnuts or a selection of whatever you have available) and chop finely with some olive oil. Then add the rocket (you can also add some basil leaves if you have any available) and more olive oil, processing the mixture until the mixture has a pesto type consistency, if too dry add more olive oil. Put in small jars and cover toe top of the pesto with a wee bit olive oil to seal the mixture. Fine with pasta, new potatoes or mixed into sauces.
Next time add more or less garlic, parmesan cheese and nuts to suit your tastes.

Spinach is easy to cook - just fry some finely cut garlic, onions, peppers and/or mushrooms (use whatever you have available) +
in a pan - once cooked add and stir in the washed spinach, cover and heat for a couple of minutes untill the spinach is cooked, season to taste and serve.

Changes at the Allotments

Variety is the spice of life or in our case the weather is interesting. In the space of a week we have had day temperatures of over 24 degrees and two days later down to 8 degrees, monsoon showers and grass frost at night so the poor veggies do not know whether it is spring, summer or winter,

The casualty of the winds was the Gazebo which the McCafferty's put up for the Richmond Fellowship people to shelter and alas it was wiped out in the hurricanes. This did not deter the McCafferty's as once the weather calmed down a plot was flattened and THE TENT arrived for use of all allotment holders.

The Allotment Holders Committee held their first meeting in The Tent and have put up a noticeboard there

The experiment of using fleece and protective covering has definitely paid off as the weeds underneath, amongst the growing plants, are easy to spot and remove as there are not too many with them probably being in the soil as seeds before planting. These areas differ greatly from the part of the allotment where seeds were planted in the open and the rows of seeds can just be spotted amongst the carpet of weeds (seeds no doubt arrived windblown) which are thriving in the current weather conditions. Must remember this for next year where my plots should just be a matting of fleece and protective coverings.

On the harvesting side, the last of the wintered leeks have been lifted and used along with the wintered spring onions. Harvesting of rocket, lettuce, radishes, spinach and other salad leaves continue. The potato dreels have now been raised and the shaws are growing well.

There has been a few casualties due to the weather butvegetables are continuing to grow

The Portaloo also kindly supplied by the McCafferty's