Monday, 21 May 2018

Hotting Up In The Polytunnel

Early carrots
Sunday 13th May 2018
The Jungle is growing
A bit of sunshine at this time of year and temperatures rapidly soar to over 100 in the polytunnel. Growth is fast.
Crops occupying the beds at the moment are the sneaky ones which will be harvested and gone before the main crops go in.
Mangetout is cropping now

Once all these are gone, their place will be taken with peppers, chillis, tomatoes, basil, sweetcorn, butternut squash, melons and cucumber. These are all grown from seed, sown a while back and patiently waiting for their place in the beds. Once they get their roots down they will grow like billy-o.
They are vulnerable while they are still in modules or small pots, for the soil can dry out within a day and it is easy to lose a whole tray of seedlings. But it's easy to go the other way and drown them too.
With the warmer weather, many seedlings can go outside in the cold frame, where they will not dry out so quickly. But here they become a tempting morsel for the odd slug which finds its way in and spends the days squidged safely in the crevices underneath the modules.

This is why patience is key when sowing and growing. There is no point going too early, for a queue of young plants waiting for their place in the soil makes them vulnerable.

The first coriander of the year and lettuces

Turnips and beetroots coming along nicely

A queue of plants waiting for polytunnel space

Turkey chicks go exploring
Meanwhile outside mama turkey took her chicks for walkabouts today. There are ten of them in all. I was hoping for more like fifteen. They all look strong and healthy though and with the weather set warm and dry I will leave them outside for as long as possible.

Dykes and Drains
With the weather so fine, we took the dogs for a long walk along one of the drains this afternoon. Drains and dykes are such ugly words, but this particular drain is most pleasant at this time of year. The pair of swans have abandoned their nest where the dyke at the bottom of our land flows into this drain, but now we know why, for they have moved further along.
It is good to see that plenty of hares have survived the winter hare coursers this year, though they lead Arthur and Boris a merry dance. Arthur is under the illusion that his stumpy little legs are capable of helping him catch up with a hare half way across a field. To be fair, he has a good go!

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