Growing as much food on as little land for as little money as possible

Update 25th August 2014 Onion seeds, pond etc

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Hi All

I could not do any more to the truck this weekend as I ran out of mig wire and was thwarted by a jobs worth at Trago Mills in Falmouth. Trago has a system on a Sunday where they shut at 16:30 but prevent any new customers from entering the premises after 16:00. I arrived at 16:04 and although I knew exactly what I wanted and would be less than a couple of minutes the security on the door would not let me in. I had already paid for 1 hour of parking so I decided to go to The Oddfellows Arms (the best pub in the world) for a pint of Sharps Special (the best pint in the world) so all was not lost. Just as well I didn’t get the mig wire as I rain heavily for most of Monday which was scheduled as it was a bank holiday.

The rain eased around lunch time so I decided to head off down to the allotment to finally plant my onion seeds for next year. I am attempting to overwinter two varieties of onion in the hope that I will get a good crop next year. I decided to plant seeds instead of sets because it is much cheaper and I have never understood thee concept of planting a whole onion just to get a slightly larger onion back. 

The two varieties I have sown are Paris Early and Sturon as both are recommended by the real seed company as being suitable for overwintering.

I have planted around 150 paris earlies and 100 sturon seeds in moduals in the polytunnel and will plant them out in October so they will hit the ground running as soon as spring springs.

150 paris early and 100 sturon seeds sown on 25th august

I have not linked the water butts in the polytunnel yet because I am not sure they are in their final resting place yet. With all the rain we have had over the last couple of days the first barrel filled up so I had to bail it out into the other two barrels so we could collect more water. I have rigged up a simple diverter using a short length of launder.

A short length of launder (guttering) used to divert water into barrel 2

When barrel one is full I flick the downpipe into the launder and the water is diverted into barrel two.

Positioned to fill barrel two

I will sort thee water storage out over the winter once I have decided where they will live.

We have been harvesting loads of beetroots, runner beans, physalis (ground cherries), cucumbers and courgettes but a lot of things are coming to an end now and I have to think what to start planting to keep production going through the winter.

The globe artichoke is looking good. Not sure what do do with them to be honest but they are impressive.


The physalis have been a success and I will plant more of these next year

Physalis or ground cherry

Someone dropped off a wooden contraption used to create sides on a shipping pallet. It is four pieces of wood, hinged in the corners to create a folding box. Anyway they make a great little raise bed.

I have done some more work to the pond. I decided that trying to make a completely natural pond using clay was far too much work for a pond on an allotment that we do not own and could be turfed off of if the owner suddenly decided they wanted to turn the field into a block of flats. We were also gifted a pond liner that was no longer needed so we just cleaned the hole of any sharp stones, lined it with loads of compost bags and old black poly and then fitted the pond liner. I am going to use some of the earth excavated from the hole to build up the sides so the water level will be just over the island in the middle which will be planted with the gunnera.

I will take photos in the next few days.




Author: tinyallotment

Dedicated to living a simple, independent, self reliant life where money is not the main factor. My dream is to engineer a life that requires very little from the outside world. I would like to provide my own shelter, collect my own water, grow, catch, hunt, forage my own food, create my own energy and deal with my own waste. This dream all starts in a tiny allotment in Cornwall where I will be experimenting in growing food, generating energy and dealing with waste.

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