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PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2013 12:37 am 
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Location: I know where the stash is – the secret's safe with me. The flying squad will never find us...
Night Mares Tail – the thing that will never leave – it's been around for 60 million years. Spreads by deeeeeeeep underground root network, and spores released above ground from new shoots. All foliage has to be crushed then coated with weed killer ad ad infinitum. Don't use a rotavator as this chops up and spreads the root network even further. Use long term heavy ground cover with deep mulching to exclude light. Constant hoeing of new shoots before spores released, may eventually weaken it. Some studies in the States suggest agricultural grade vinegar helps – this is 10% compared to pickling stuff in supermarkets which is a weaker 5%.

Bit more ground clearance down the allotment today, despite a touch of "man flu" chest infection - the weather was so good I just had to get there and make the most of it. No red kites today I'm afraid – would love to see buzzards. I think the kites are getting closer to London, you can see lots of them along the M40 through the Chilterns.

IBCs are something to aspire to, but agree one needs to be sure of their last contents. Some time back, I managed to source some drums in 5mm thick catering grade polyprop which had contained orange juice. These were £5 each and larger than the average butt. :wink: Fitted taps and drainage to them to collect rain water.

Btw, happy to come to some arrangement with the sloes!

With regards to my shed's viking send off, this would involve quantities of last years sloe gin vintage and accompanied by either "Age of no reply" or "The flood" by The Soundtracks of Our Lives, played louder than eleven! Here's a visual of what it could look like...


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2013 12:09 pm 
South East AEC
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Just back from the allotment, managed to get in beetroot, swiss chard 50 onion sets and I was feeling optimistic so popped in a few potato's. The hot bed is finished for the sweet potato's as well. My atutum planting of onions is looking good the red more than the white, the autumn planting of garlic is looking good as well.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2013 12:12 pm 
South East AEC
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grumpycommuter wrote:
Johnathon...you're talk of sweet potatoes is intriguing! The good lady was asking about them and i persuaded her that they were very difficult to do :) Do you get good results? I've read about 'hot beds' before and fancied having a go and they sound perfect for sweet potatoes. Do you insulate he manure from the soil below and to the side or just chuck it in?


Never grown them before, so we will see. They usually they come from slips rather than a tuber, and results are mixed to say the least, I have some commercial grade micro propagated cuttings, that are supposed to be more reliable in the ground, so we will see, I saw a trial last year and they produced OK results just in open ground, so using the hot bed method I am hopeful.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 1:50 pm 
South East Deputy AEC
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Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 7:27 pm
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Location: Angmering
Do you need a hand :oops:


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 8:22 pm 
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Location: Chained to the mash tun.
Dig, dig, dig, dig...... I feel like one of the Seven Dwarves but without the gems!

No piccies i'm afraid as all soil looks the same after a while. Planting begins on Monday. SPUDS!!! Ebay summerhouse collected from Evesham today, so another barn raising soon.

I've been donated some Jerusalem Artichokes, so they are going in on Monday as well.

Hows everyone else getting on.

I was almost mown down by a Buzzard but more of that later!


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 10:13 pm 
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Location: I know where the stash is – the secret's safe with me. The flying squad will never find us...
Hi, evening!

Chop, chop, chop, dig, dig, dig... somewhere under the bramble forest is an allotment to be tilled. Going to put some spuds in tomorrow hopefully.

The bees were out today, and the green woodpeckers, but nothing bigger.

I managed to get a Wilko's 'walk in' greenhouse up in the garden today for trays of seeds. And before the downpour happened, we sowed 43 garlic and some onions – 82 yellow, 53 red. Also managed to put up 2 more new 6x6 fence panels to replace ones blown away in the winter gales. Had fun with the hens too, who watched the garden antics – they had an afternoon treat of cabbage leaves and grapes.

We've got JAs too. We started with a dozen JAs over 12 years ago and we're still producing from that same first dozen – the crop just keeps on multiplying. We've posted boxes of them off to people around the country – one smallholder in Mid Wales used them to cultivate a field by putting pigs in to root around for them, thus turning over the ground.

Tell us more about the buzzard encounter....


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:51 pm 
rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:54 am
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Location: Derby
Just back from the plot. New bed...Dug out nightmares tail infested soil. Lined same with weed suppressant membrane.riddling soil before placing back into new bed.

I went down about 4 feet.No roman coins yet.Generally thing on the up.Including the NMT ....sscccrreeaammmm. Though about selling it as a new type of asparagus!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCJjJJRHA48


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:01 pm 
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Location: Chained to the mash tun.
bagpuss wrote:
Just back from the plot. New bed...Dug out nightmares tail infested soil. Lined same with weed suppressant membrane.riddling soil before placing back into new bed.

I went down about 4 feet.No roman coins yet.Generally thing on the up.Including the NMT ....sscccrreeaammmm. Though about selling it as a new type of asparagus!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCJjJJRHA48


That sounds awful..is it over all the plots? Could you move to a different spot?

You can embed youtube stuff using the 'youtube' button up top where 'quote' is etc....

like this...



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 10:57 pm 
rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:54 am
Posts: 1059
Location: Derby
Matters got worst after last years very wet summer. half the plot was under 3 inches of water for weeks.The mare t had a field day :facepalm: .Slowly getting top side of it.Plating through membrane in an effort to slow it down by cutting out light to it.Also mowing it really slows it down.
Moving plot would be a shame .When the Missus and i took ours on ,as were many others,it had brambles 6 foot high . A lot of hard work ensued . a mattock sorted it out.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:27 pm 
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Location: Chained to the mash tun.
Oh my life !! You know you have got it bad when you have to mow it :)

Interesting piece here - http://allotmenteer.co.uk/category/weeds/
and also here - http://www.ehow.co.uk/how_5598474_remov ... -weed.html

Wish you lots of luck bagpuss, and if its any consolation we have it in places as well :(

As for the buzzard incident.... i was walking onto the plot with my family and as we passed under a tree there was a big crashing sound above us. A huge buzzard dropped down in front of us, maybe 5 feet away and at head height. It then opened its wings and soared away, staying about 6 feet above the ground. It was that big i thought it might make off with one of the children or heavens forbid, Mrs G !! A truly impressive sight...


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