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Everything posted by Christian

  1. *puts hand up* I am a stationary addict. I agree Cats tails, the choice in Germany is staggering. Scandinavia is good too. They have whole shops dedicated to paper and stationary. *dangerous* Still looking for these illusive colouring books. I'm sure I have a few (hundred) colouring pencils somewhere.
  2. I spoke at my Mum's funeral (also a humanist ceremony) and it was the hardest thing I've ever done. I wrote a speech and rewrote it several times. Use lots of gaps between the sentences and take your time. Look up at people as you are talking as friendly smiles really does help! Practice lots on your own and get the pace right. I didn't intend for my eulogy to be funny, but looking back it was hysterical Mum would have liked that. In all my practice runs, I didn't manage to finish, as got too emotional, but on the day, the Humanist said he would read it if I couldn't, but I wanted to....and did get through it. I was hard to do, but am so glad I managed to do it, made her proud I think and that it what got me through it. People will understand if you make mistakes, get lost, or lose your place, it's ok. Nice that your friend feels that you can do it for her. Good luck.
  3. I can't tell you how well mine is doing Everything is doing well, apart from the sprouts, my netting wasn't high enough and the cabbage white managed to lay some eggs. I thought I'd got most of them, but judging my the holey leaves, I didn't Patty pans squashes = at least 2/3/4 a day, the same for round courgettes. The raspberries are great, parsnips doing well and onions are massive. Pulled loads of carrots, just as thinnings, but the main crop are still in and looking good. I put some horse muck around the roots of the rasps, but that's all I've added. Picking handfuls of runner and borlotto beans. The sweetcorn is the envy of the allotment, just hope they start to thicken up now. And I discovered 3 mini pumpkins are now growing! Beetroot is loving the heavy soil and I planted some more a few weeks ago. I'm loving it down there.
  4. I've just finished a 6 day block at work and went to the allotment yesterday. Things have come on so quickly in just a week (with all that rain)! I picked several patty pan squashes that were huge. 7-8" diameter, plus more Tondo courgettes - one that was the size of a small football. Sweetcorn is nor 4' high and doing well. Planted more beetroot and chard, plus radishes.
  5. I'm pretty sure that mine were very late last year in producing fruit.....
  6. It's a shame I didn't post earlier as I was in the Algarve 2 weeks ago. My friend is there in two weeks if you'd like me to pop the seeds in an envelope, he could post it for me? Anyway, I think it would do well in Portugal as it's an Italian variety They are great for stuffing, just hollow out the middle and stuff, apparently but I haven't tried it yet.
  7. Thanks Daphne. The taste of the courgettes is the same as the long ones, but they seem to be producing so many and in a couple of days, they go from marble sized fruits to tennis balls. I have a packet of spare seeds if you'd like them? Cosmos are doing ok ish actually. I planted 50 plus seeds and they all came up I have them dotted around the plot and garden (as does everyone else at the allotment as I gave so many away I mulched the blueberries really well and give them a good soaking twice a week. I had a huge plant at my last house and agree the foliage is stunning in autumn.
  8. I came back from holiday to a sea of thistles. Some 2' high I could curse the farmer that ploughed the field before the allotments were sectioned off Ok, so the sweetcorn is 2' high and has really thick stems and looks amazing. 16 plants in a block so should do well All broad beans eaten and cut back to the ground and have put my Curly kale in. Planted more sweetcorn seedlings out and just hope there is enough time for them to start. All the pumpkins and squashes are going mad. Have picked patty pans a few times now and they are going mental. The winter types are growing well and producing lots of flowers but no fruit yet (well, they are winter ones and small, so guessing they'll take a bit longer). The Tondo di Piacenza (sp) round courgettes are incredible. Tomato 'loveheart' and beefsteak aren't even worth talking about. Brussels sprouts are at the top of their netting, so need to raise that to stop the Cabbage White laying eggs. Have deadheaded my french marigolds and sprinkled them all over the netting to try and deter the white fly. Seems to be working, so will interplant with Marigolds next year. Not a fan of the smell of them, but if they do their job. My beetroot which I have never been able to grow properly is loving the heavy soil of the allotment. I think that was the problem at home, raised beds with compost and topsoil mixed, just not heavy enough to support them. I have picked loads and just boiled the baby ones, peeled and eaten out of the pan. So sweet! Planted some more that I wil hopefully be able to store over winter. The Borlotto bean plants and runner (Scarlet Emperor) are at the top of the wigwams now, so have pinched them out. Masses of flowers too. I've lost a red currant plant, but the blackcurrants x 2 are loaded with fruit. Autumn raspberries doing well, but the Terrier managed to get under the strawberry netting and eat the lot My blueberries were tiny (2 plants) and the birds have eaten the lot as I forgot to net them. It's their first year in the ground, so hopefully next year will be better and I'll remember to net them. Carrots look good under the fleece, but resisting the urge to look under there too often. Peas harvested and the rest are too woody now, so will let them dry and use the seed for next year. The only thing I'm struggling with is flowers. My sweet peas that usually do so well and still thin weedy plants, although I have had a few flowers. Dahlias are coming on slowly, Zinnias have vanished, but the Little Dorrit sunflowers are doing well. The top inch or so of the allotment os really dark and wet but underneath that its like dust. I need a really decent downpour to get the water down lower. 4 water butts installed now, but only have half a one with water in it. Taking huge containers down with water is a drag and not good for my dodgy back, but the house opposite kindly let me use their hosepipe to fill everything up They are going on a water meter soon, so won't be able to do that again. All in all, quite chuffed with progress for my first year at the lottie. The weeds are a constant battle, but the same goes for my garden. I need more weed suppressing membrane (don't buy the Asda one for £3.50, it has disintegrated into dust after 2 weeks) and one of the plot holders knows a tree surgeon with free wood chip, so will do the paths later this year.
  9. I have black fly on everything! Even the rhubarb But there are loads of lady birds around, so I have made small ladybird houses by filling pots with dry stars and putting them upturned on stakes around the plot. Let them do the hard work as I don't want to spray anything. I've never seen so many black fly, but all the plot holders have the same problem. Pulled by first carrots up yesterday to give the others a bit more room and they were massive with nice straight roots. I think my broad beans will be ready in a few days. The sweetcorn stems are thickening up nicely too.
  10. My two were really spindly when I first planted them out, but once in a large pot the stem thickened up really quickly. (In fact, I think I snapped two of the 4 plants when planting out)...
  11. I dug up my earlies yesterday and had a large bowlful with melted butter and salt. Delish! Pulled some beetroot today to give the rest more space. Boiled and skinned (with disposable gives) and eaten out of the pan. #redtongue So nice, I planted more seeds as it seems to do very well in the heavy soil at the allotment. Never had much luck in my raised beds at home.
  12. I've just sent James a text and he is working on it Clare
  13. I selected omlethighcontrast and its fine on my iPad.
  14. I have emailed James and asked him to look into the blog section.
  15. *peach envy* On a 7 day working block now, but popped down yo the lottie to do some watering yesterday. I am stunned at how quickly everything is growing now. My sunflower stems are thickening up, the courgettes, squashes and pumpkins have had a growth spurt and must be appreciating the warmer weather Peas aren't looking too good, but all in all not bad. The raised beds are all full, but I still need to find space for the kale, somewhere! Am thinking when the early potatoes come up, I might put them there.
  16. Same here WH. I have emailed James and asked him to look into it. *mod hat off* seeing as it's a free forum for us to use, when things go wrong it's just one of those things. It costs Omlet money to run, so I'm not complaining.... Oh and Alis girls, my blog is at the bottom of my signature (I really do need to write my blog more often, sorry)
  17. Hello Carl and welcome to the forum There is an Omlet guide to keeping bees here I would get in touch with your local beekeeping association and ask them for advice. Good luck!
  18. The forum and websites are being upgraded at the moment I think....
  19. I have lemon envy Daphne When we stay at a friends villa in Sao Bras Del Alportel, she has a lemon tree and I can't help picking several when we are there. She told me to strip the tree when I left last year and I made Limoncello with them
  20. I've been taking Glucosamine and chondroitin for a few months now and found it has really helped with stiff fingers. I get it from Healthspan and find them really good. The parcels are letter box size so no waiting in for a delivery.
  21. Well, 2 plot holders have had their cabbages eaten by something. I'm thinking rabbits, but the whole field had chicken wire buried 3 foot down on the perimeter, so who knows? My squash plants and courgettes look small and pathetic, but there is still time. Planted a couple of winter squashes in my garden so I can keep a closer eye on them..... Sorry about your apple tree SC
  22. I spent hours at the lottie yesterday and today. Mainly weeding and managed to burn my neck today. Planted out my leeks, all the sunflowers and the last of my dahlias. A plot holder gave me climbing French beans so they are in too. Every bed is now full and I still have some curly kale to plant out, but will just keep potting on, until the broad beans come out. Planted some more carrots between the rows of onions, so we'll see if that works.

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