Monday, 8 April 2013
Planting the soft fruit
Planting 20 soft fruit plants (raspberries, redcurrants, blackcurrants and blueberries) was my main job for Saturday. This is part of our plan to refocus our main allotment on fruit production and poultry and move most (but not all) vegetable production up to Dad's allotment in Marley Hill. The bed on which I planted most of them has not previously been used by us. When we took on the allotment, it was completely derelict. This is the last part to be brought into use. The original plan was to put in potatoes as these would help break up the ground. Once we took the decision to refocus the large allotment on fruit and eggs (to beat the flooding and because the chickens and ducks will eat any unprotected veg), we bought some additional soft fruit bushes and canes.
I had to put some netting around this blueberry as the moment it was in the ground, the hens started to peck the leaves.
We do not however want to spent lots of money buying many more fruit bushes. The cheapest price we have been able to get them is £3 each. To ensure we are able to fill the space we are allocating to fruit growing, we have taken cuttings from our existing canes and shrubs. Some have gone into a pot outside the greenhouse to get them to root. The rest have gone into jars in our kitchen (a temporary location). The ones in the kitchen are doing far better than anything we have growing on the allotment, whethere they are cuttings or established plants. Clearly the warmth in the house is a boost to them.