Saturday 29 March 2014

The Edible Garden Show 2014

Today I went back through my old stomping grounds to Alexandra Palace in North London to attend The Edible Garden Show.  I was given two tickets to attend and managed to persuade Mr R to come with me.

The Grand Hall was filled with rows and rows of stalls all selling things or educating people about the world of growing your own food.  The show itself was sponsored by Maldon Sea Salt who have been harvesting salt from the sea in Essex for over 130 years.

Maldon Sea Salt sponsored the kitchen theatre and I watched chef Phil Vickery turn a bag of frozen peas into three delicious recipes to celebrate Spring!

We wandered around and met some lovely people and I was given some very interesting products to trial on the allotment and reiview for you at a later date.

There were loads of stalls with chickens and every thing you need to keep them and look after them and then enjoy your own home produced eggs.  I really fancy keeping chickens (there are a couple of people keeping them at the allotment!) but Mr R says absolutely not! But of course watch this space - I never take no for an answer!! There was also this beautiful fellow to say hello to!

Mr R was particularly taken with the Wolf Garten range of gardening tools. One handle and interchangeable tools. We bought a grubber and handle but the sad thing is that Mr R leaned the handle against something when we sat down and forgot to pick up the handle so we won't be trying it out tomorrow on the allotment!

I had a chance to listen to Christine Walkden giving a talk about making the most of your vegetable patch and learned a few new tips. It was nice to say hello to Christine after her talk because we worked together many years ago at Capel Manor Horticultural College. 

After quite a few hours of walking around and talking to loads of very interesting people Mr R was ready for a refreshing cold drink and a sit down.

I will be writing in more details about some of the products we got at the show and I will also be cooking with the Maldon Sea Salt over on my food blog.  But for now, a cup of coffee and a browse through all the catalogues I picked up today!

Sunday 9 March 2014

First tasks

This time last year I was asking myself what on earth had I ever done getting involved with my allotment however today is our first day there for the season and it was absolutely beautiful day, the  sun was shining it was warm about 16°C.

We went up there with a few tasks in mind but first we stopped off at Homebase and I used my Christmas voucher and bought myself a little rotary push lawnmower which I've wanted for keeping the grass down around the areas we have yet to cultivate.  My two jobs for the day were to plant out the early potatoes and to plant at the raspberry canes, both of those jobs are done and a whole bed was forked over and fed some compost and some local horse manure. I gave it a quick once over with the new mower in between the veg beds which is going to make keeping neat and  tidy a lot easier.

I'm looking forward to really getting stuck in and growing all our vegetables for the coming season!