The soil is warming up.

 In Allotment

A typical April day of strong wind, sun and showers but good for working. The daffodils and tulips planted over the years are finally in flower and the plot looks so much the better for it. Spring at last on the allotment
The soil thermometer showed the soil is quickly warming up with a temperature of 8 degrees C at a spade’s depth on the sunniest beds, so time for sowing and planting. Today we planted the first of the potatoes – the ‘earlies’, variety Foremost. Just the one row in the bed but we put in another two rows on the adjacent area we cleared last year. They were put in at a spade’s depth with a good layer of compost in the bottom of the trench, and set about 25/30cm apart. The trench was filled in and the row ridged up.
Most of the shallots and onions which had been brought on in pots were planted out and netted against the rabbits. The high raised bed was cleared and additional soil and compost added to bring up the level. The strawberries were replanted in two ridges through weed-suppressing matting – keeping the plants warmer and more moist and the fruit clean.

We now have the seed packets for the Japanese vegetables for the demonstration bed so we shall start sowing these shortly.Japanese vegetable seeds

We do a lot of seed sowing at home to improve the germination rate and speed it up, so all the kale, cabbages, peas and broad beans have now been sown in pots. Once the plants are ready for planting out, we shall sow more directly in the ground to give a succession of produce.

Off to the wonderful Harrogate Spring Show next week so there will be no report but the second earlies [ potatoes] can be planted and the first sowings of carrots and beetroot put in.

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