June Veg Patch

I picked my first  2 strawberries today – well I say 2 but one of them isn’t really fully ripe.  The trouble is I also removed 5 half eaten strawberries from the plants which I am presuming the birds have had a go at so I decided they weren’t getting the big fat nearly ripe one too.  I had hoped not to have to resort to netting the plants but it appears my hopes were in vain.  I haven’t cosseted the plants, feeding and watering them, as much as I have just to feed the local feathered fiends.  So it will a trip to the garden centre on the way home  for me tomorrow to get some netting and supports.

Now onions are another matter I have been harvesting them for a couple of weeks as I need them.  Also harvested the first mangetout today.

The fruit end of the plot has grown a raised salad bed and the weeds are still very much in evidence but only really where the extra path is going to go when I have the time and funds available.

You can admire the delightful rust on my garlic to the right of the photo.  The potatoes are a little sporadic which is disappointing but the earlier planted ones further down the plot are doing much better.  This week I have planted sweetcorn (just out of shot) and Carvelo Nero (black kale) which is being protected under netting. A tough lesson learnt having lost all my cauliflowers to pigeons a month ago.

The first sowing of parsnips and carrots had poor germination, I suspect because the temperatures dropped just after I sowed.  However the second sowings a couple of weeks ago have been much more successful.  The white rectangle you can see is protecting my celery and celeriac seedlings from well everything and anything – so far so good.  The brown patch is my neighbours plot, they are new and I think decided that digging the weeds by hand was too labour intensive so have applied weed killer. Luckily it doesn’t seem to have affected my plot.

I though the biggest  challenge with an allotment would be battling the weeds but it turns out that it is actually more challenging battling the various creatures that see my patch as a smorgasbord of delights – but I won’t be defeated!

16 Comments on “June Veg Patch

  1. That’s reminded me to rush out and cover my own strawberries. The greedy blackbirds have been eyeing them up already. Aren’t those first few handfuls of produce a treat! It makes all the hard work worthwhile. Thanks Helen for your phtos and reports. I can see what I am aiming for!

    • Hi Karen – dont take advice from me, I’ve only been growing food for a year so really a novice!

  2. We, gardeners, are a tough lot. You have birds, we have chipmunks. They think we planted the strawberries for them and eat accordingly. I can’t defeat them so I’m thinking I may need to rethink strawberries and expand my raspberries. Good luck!

    • I have more of less given up on cabbages for the same reason, I dont like them enough to go through all that hassle

  3. I was hoping to pick a few strawberries today Helen but everyone was either not ripe underneath or had been nibbled. I always worry about birds getting themselves trapped in the netting so have only used it once and have shared my crop in other years. My garlic has rust and I will have it too I think if the rain carries on at the same rate!

  4. I’m with you…I battle the critters too and everything has to be netted or it is gone. Your patch is looking lush and so much better than mine. I am hoping to get tomatoes, eggplants and peppers this year…so far they are doing so, so. My first go at potatoes growing in a bag has been good…now let’s see f they make it to the fall.

  5. Huh! My strawberries are still flowering – they won’t be ripe for another month. I’ve long given up growing brassicas – the difference in quality just isn’t worth the battle aginst the predators. The birds don’t like my strawberries much, but the slugs do, and I haven’t solved that one yet.

  6. Yvonne – NZ – What are mangeots? Are they a sort of swede? A cold area veg? Swedes grow well in Southland in NZ. Turnips mainly for sheep feed. We grew them in Canterbury for sheep – break fed – moved the fence frequently. My girls loved pulling them up and eating the young ones.

    • Hi Yvonne – mangetout are a form of pea, they are the pea pod before the peas have developed

  7. I’m having a similar problem with birds who are attacking my green tomatoes. Looking forward to seeing any solutions you find 🙂

  8. There is always something wanting to eat OUR food; I heard on the radio that pigeons are the number one pest now in the UK for vegetable crops, I think it was pigeons or their slightly prettier cousins collored doves who ate the tops of all my peas as they germinated! But all that said there is nothing like eating your own produce. ENJOY! Christina

  9. Your patch looks beautiful. I love how you have laid it out. Vegetable gardens are always challenging, I think. It always amazes me when something goes right in mine, there is so much to go wrong in them!

  10. Looking good,regarding pests,straw under ripening strawberries deters slugs and old cds on string tied from one end to another keeps birds at bay.The residue from filter coffee is also a good defence against slugs and snails.

    • I have already put straw under plants and hung up CDs – not worked

  11. Our ground strawberries don’t seem to be of interest to the birds, but we find them tunneled through at the first glimpse of red, and full of woodlice when we go to pick them, despite straw beneath them. Do woodlice attack strawberries, or are they just availing themselves of routes carved by slugs? The trial ones on our woodstore ripen untouched (and are wonderful), so we are likely to replace our ground beds with more raised planters along the woodstore.

  12. I have an opportunity to take up an allotment as I’ve had my name down for one for a good while. You’ve got some great information here but I must admit I’m not sure what to consdier planting first.

    I’m interested in getting as much out of the patch as possible which is about 3M x 5M. Vegetables are my big interest, any really; which ones are easiest to grow and get the biggest yields. Any advice much appreciated.

Please feel free to leave comments as its always lovely to get feedback. I try to respond to comments as much as possible but sometimes life and work get in the way but I will do my best to respond especially if your comment is a question.

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