Allotment Diary (July – Week 1)


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How much time have I spent on the allotments?

The total for this week is: 12 hours, which is a little less than usual because we’ve been on holiday for a few days.  My average is running at 16 hours which is amazing really as this was my target level when I started the allotment experience 3 years ago and this is the first time I’ve tracked it.

Allotment Finances

We’ve been away on holiday this week so levels have been low, but we’ve harvested a total of £4,555.   We’ve spent a total of £869 this year, mostly one time investments and a lot of compost!

What we’ve harvested and eaten

I’ve a new feature in the database that I created to track my harvests, that automatically gives me a weekly summary view of my harvests (I only take one picture per harvest, so this is nowhere near everything we picked, but it’s a nice summary.  Below each photo is the total number of boxes we harvested, often more than shown in the photo.



We harvested a total of £173 worth of veg this week, excluding everything from the store. We had 35 meals with ingredients from the allotment.


2019-07-03 16.01.01 (Medium).jpg

We picked: Gherkins, french beans, Pine berries, tayberries, red currants, chard, turnip greens, baking potatoes, trumbocino, cucumber, raspberries, gooseberries, red tomatoes, runner beans, beetroot, mange tout broad beans, celery, courgettes, New Zealand spinach, golden purselane, strawberries, yellow tomatoes, carrots, calabrese, cauliflower, sprout leaves, calabrese leaves, radish, radish leaves, lots of types of kale, true spinach, spring onions, salad rocket, sorrel,  mixed herbs, rhubarb, mangetout peas, shelling peas and loads of lettuce. We also raided the store for: onions, red beetroot, golden beetroot and dried apples.  Bold items are new.

People we are feeding

I’m delighted that another of our daughters has returned to the local area, so we are now harvesting for her too, so that makes nine families (Us, Elena, Jennie, Tessa, Tony, Diane, Anne, Chris, Christine) about 22 people and I’m also sharing any extra surplus with fellow allotmenteers and Diane’s chickens (which supply our eggs)!

What we’ve bought this week

  1. Nothing

Video’s this week

What I’m Growing and Sowing in July

‭New plans for the allotments and a mini harvest‬

What I’ve sown

Nothing, I have a bit of a backlog due to the holiday

What I’ve planted

I’ve now planted all of my spare kales, squeezing them into every nook and cranny.   Red and Green Curly kale, Carvelo Nero, Dazzling Blue.  I continue to plant potatoes every week, as I empty containers for harvest.  I have loads of new brassicas waiting for space to come free!

What I’ve potted on

  1. Nothing

First harvests of the year

Using the same technique my first harvest database now also gives me a nice summary view of the week’s first harvests.


What we’ve run out of in store

The only thing we have in store now from last year are dried apples and a few things in the freezer.  I’m not going to track things going into the store at this point as it’s too complicated.  In October after we harvest the beetroot/carrots etc I will start again.)

Last harvests

  1. Celery – May week 1
  2. Last years kale – May week 1
  3. Perpetual spinach – May week 3
  4. Purple sprouting broccoli – May week 4
  5. Chard – June week 1
  6. Onions – June week 2 (we have fresh onions now of course)
  7. Beetroot – June week 3 (we have fresh beets now of course)
  8. Carrots – June week 4 (we have fresh carrots now of course)

What’s left in store

The only thing we have in store now from last year are dried apples and a few things in the freezer.  I’m not going to track things going into the store at this point as it’s too complicated.  In October after we harvest the beetroot/carrots etc I will start again.)

Water Reserves and Rainfall

I’m not tracking water now that the taps are on:

  1. Allotment reserves (Steve) :
  2. Allotment reserves (Jennie):
  3. Allotment reserves (Debbie):
  4. Home reserves :

What have we processed for preserving

We have a new database for our preserves now and Debbie’s been hard at work.  These are the preserves so far this summer!




  1. We took a few days holiday and everything survived!
  2. The preserves are amazing
  3. The squash are romping away after a slow start
  4. I’ve finally got the winter carrots planted, 2 weeks later than I’d hoped for



  1. The beans are still very slow,  I’ve replanted about 30% of them and the replacements are already bigger than their much elder siblings
  2. I planted the summer lettuces about two weeks too late, the main salad beds are running to seed now, so it will be touch and go whether we have sufficient supply.  This seems to happen to me every year!
  3. some of the container planted potatoes are suffering, some from lack of water, some blight and some unknown

Steve Richards

I'm retired from work as a business and IT strategist. now I'm travelling, hiking, cycling, swimming, reading, gardening, learning, writing this blog and generally enjoying good times with friends and family

3 Responses

  1. Always so interesting to read (or watch) your garden activities. Impressive that about 16 hours accomplishes so much. How nice your daughter is nearby now.

  2. Hi Sue, I have four daughters, I’ve now got two of them close enough to home to feed them, sadly – from that perspective – the other two are in the south. The 16 hours has been a target that I’ve been working to achieve for a log time. Before I retired that’s the amount of work I was doing and the medical advice that I received at the time was to limit my work to 4 hours a day, 4 days a week. I can probably do more than that now, but I’m not sure whether I can sustain it for the long term, so it’s a relief to see that I’m working within my limits, although very little of those 16 hours is ‘work’, most is pure pleasure. I’m trying to get my mandatory activity down to about 8 hours a week eventually, with the remaining 8 hours optional, but that won’t be easy on the allotment because of the weed pressure and difficulty watering : All the best – Steve

  3. It is amazing to see what you all produce, for the time it takes. And you are self-sufficient (or nearly so) for so many things! The beans have been slow to get going here too, and the ones you’ve got are lovely. The purple Amethyst ones were new to me, and I’ve made a note to try a spot of them next year. Even though they turn green when cooked, they are still a healthy addition to the lineup..

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