Spring comes to allotment – 4 weeks late!
A cloudy day and still chilly but the blessing of no east wind. The ground is still cold – a soil thermometer is a useful tool at this time of year and it was showing a temperature of 4 degrees C at a depth of 15cm so there is not yet enough warmth in the soil to initiate growth, but another week should do it.
The main task of the day was turning the compost heap to mix up the wet and dry materials and aereate it to speed up the decomposition. The heap is covered with an old carpet and plastic to keep it warm and reasonably dry but there was too much dry material which was not rotting down. There are plenty of red compost worms so a good mix-up and a watering, and higher temperatures to come will speed up the composting process. The green waste at the bottom which had turned into compost was added to the other heap which is ready for use and will be put into the ground as we plant out. All the wooden name tags and boards were given a coat of preservative, the strawberry plants in the tubs had a watering and some more of the green alkanet was dug out.
Jobs for next week: Wire round the autumn raspberry stakes; Space out the strawberries in the high bed, adding compost ; Plant the early potatoes, onions, shallots – weather permitting.