October update

By Robin Burgess | October 18 2019

October update

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    Hope allotments blog – October 2019

    It’s been a bit of a wet and blustery October so far with the first frost which, fortunately, did not do any damage to our crops. We will continue to harvest our frost tender Tomatoes, Beans and Chillies until the weather gets colder which will, hopefully, not happen until at least the end of the month. After that we will still have our root crops – beetroot, carrots, parsnips (see a fine specimen here!) and turnips and our Brassicas – cabbage, kale and collard greens and our winter greens – endive, lettuce, land cress, purslane, spinach, chard and sorrel – to name a few.

    We are looking to expand our fruit production next year with the addition of half a dozen espalier apple trees to be planted along the western boundary of our plots to provide not only fruit but also an ornamental windbreak as it can get quite blowy on the site.

    We already have some nice plum trees on our eastern boundary and we are in the process of clearing out some of the brambles that have been allowed to encroach on the plot so that we can get in to prune them properly, although this should really have been done in the summer as there is a danger of silver leaf disease if it is done in the winter, but as all allotment holders know there are generally more tasks than time available.

    We surpassed our hopes and got a Gold Award for the Hope allotments at the Northampton in Bloom awards this month. It is nice to see that all the hard work done by our teams of corporate and individual volunteers has been rewarded and we will work hard to ensure that the allotments continue to improve and to provide fruit and vegetables for those in  need during 2020.

    Looking forward to November, if it stays mild we should still be able to harvest a good range of crops and to get round to some of the tasks that we were unable to complete during the busy summer months.

    Finally, in response to a question that I was asked, Yes, You can put compost on your Rhubarb but I find that it tastes better with custard.

    Have a happy gardening month and see you in November.

    Joe – the Hope gardener

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Robin Burgess