Today the two of us spent a very useful and pleasurable day at the allotment.
Paul made a huge new cage to keep the woodpigeons away from the new brussels sprouts bed.
The cage I made last year wasn't tall or wide enough for plants to develop fully. This new model is taller than me, which is possibly a little too far in the other direction! Let's see if the brussels plants take advantage of their luxurious new height allowance; now that would be a good crop!
If the cage should prove overcapacious, perhaps we could plant some fruit bushes next year; blackcurrant redcurrant and raspberry would be good.
Meanwhile I thinned out the autumn cauliflowers, cutting down a couple of sunflowers as I went; transplanted winter leeks and brussels sprouts into two beds, dug over after the broad beans were pulled out; harvested potatoes and picked french beans and runners; found the first couple of sweetcorn cobs starting to swell; put elastic bands around the celery; and enjoyed a quiet cup of coffee sitting next to the Jerusalem artichokes and looking over the lush three sisters bed. It's looking good!
Lastly I watered everything, as despite frequent showers this week, the soil was really dry and thirsty by this afternoon.
I know I look as if I'm trying to hide behind the beanpole in this picture - this would be futile at the best of times. But I was actually just picking runner beans.
Have I mentioned how splendiferous the sunflowers are this season? Here are a few for your pleasure.
The tallest are now about 7 feet high. Bill has the highest plant on our site - one bloom must be at least eight foot tall - but I have the most prolifically flowering.
I have picked nearly forty blooms over the past three weeks, not including today's dozen (after these photos were taken). They are a delight and a pleasure.