This morning was bright and sunny with a definite hint of Spring in the air so I paid a quick visit to the allotment to check how we had fared over the cold weather, I must say not bad at all!I pulled aside some dead foliage from the rhubarb bed to find nice fat red shoots about to burst forth. The severe frost was supposed to be up to 36cms deep but it has not checked the growth of these. I am surprised as they had not been covered with any manure over the Winter, we had extremely wet weather in Autumn when we should have been doing the last of the digging and covering so the rhubarb has been uncovered in the coldest spell we have had for years.
I am going to pay a visit on Friday morning with suitable work wear to cover it with manure now, as we are forecast another severe frost over the weekend.
I picked up a fork and stuck it into the ground expecting to hit frozen soil and I nearly tumbled forward, the ground is so soft!The frost has broken up the sub soil I think and the thaw has extended down making the soil soft.I stayed on the path as I am sure walking on it now would only do untold damage. This little Robin popped over to keep and eye on me in case I uncovered anything interesting!
The French garlic is looking OK a bit of frost burn on the ends of some leaves
The Irish organic garlic has nearly caught up despite a much slower start.
The lupin near the fence has put out new growth, the old stalks are still too wet and soft to break off. I will cut them back when I remember to bring out my tools.
I was pleasantly surprised by the new growth and I am now looking forward to getting down to beginning a new season on the plot.
There were tiny buds on the blackcurrants and blueberry bushes, some sprouts are still to be picked and leeks are growing.
I dismantled the scarecrow in readiness for his makeover and recovered the plots with black plastic where it had blown off.
The bright days are probably helping all this new growth as usually our January is dark and wet,because of all the frost, we have had mainly sunny bright days and there is a big stretch in the evenings already something we don't normally remark on this early in the new year.
Lynda's custard biscuits, I read this recipe on Lynda's blog from Tanzania and had to try them, they are soft and buttery I think a grown up biscuit.The fork pattern on most of them is not in the recipe, Lynda says to flatten them slightly with a fork before putting them in the oven but mine were in a few minutes by the time I thought of doing it. It made no difference to the taste!