Down at the allotments – what’s growing on!

allotmentA few weeks back the pumpkins and courgettes were still tiny..

I’m really enjoying myself at the allotment lately. I’m finding it a wonderful place to put my feet up and relax and I also love potting on in the greenhouse and watching the crops grow.

courgetteThe pumpkin patch growing a little more

Last year was also very enjoyable but because we had so much wet weather followed by lots of dry weather the harvest was quite mixed. I had amazing tomatoes, chilies and peppers but a severe lack of pumpkin, squash, courgette, beetroot, peas and potatoes. I suspect those crops didn’t enjoy the grey sky and rain.

allotment-courgettesNow the pumpkin patch is taking over!

This year I’m hoping for an all-round better performance from my edible plants and so far things are looking good (apart from the mess caused by ‘shed’ making!)

We are currently on holiday in Provence and I hear that there is a heatwave at home. Adam set up an ingenious timer controlled watering system and ‘allotment Bill’ has offered to help out too, but if this is what my crops were like before we left then I imagine (and hope) we will go back to a full-on harvest festival!

Here’s what was happening before we left…








The pea plants are so short and sparse this year but they cropped a long time before anyone elses at the allotments. I think this is because I sowed them earlier in guttering in the greenhouse.

broad beans

My broad beans have been cropping for many weeks now too, maybe because I sowed them back in November. The ones I sowed direct in March had caught up in size before we left but not with the beans.




I’m looking forward to these little cucumbers growing a bit more!


I can’t say that I’m 100% looking forward to going home because our holiday in Provence is wonderful but I am looking forward to doing some gardening and seeing how much our plants have grown.

How are your crops getting on? Are you finding them better this year compared to last?


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35 Responses to “Down at the allotments – what’s growing on!”

  1. Charlie@Seattle Trekker July 20, 2013 at 12:55 pm #

    It does appear that the fall harvest will be special…I very much enjoyed your photos and the walk through your garden.

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 1:05 pm #

      Hi Charlie! Thanks so much for dropping by! Glad you enjoyed the tour :)

  2. home, garden, life July 20, 2013 at 1:02 pm #

    My mouth is watering! Kudos on your gardens/produce? Your season is much later than here in US. Enjoy the cool images, as Virginia is hotter than a pepper patch now.

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 1:07 pm #

      Hello there! Yes, everything is a little later than normal here because the weather got off to a slow start. These photos are a little out of date now too because I’ve been on vacation in France for a little while now. I hope when I get home everything will be growing nicely and not dried out and wilting!! Thanks so much for dropping by, I hope you are well.

  3. Crafty Gardener July 20, 2013 at 2:28 pm #

    Looks like you will have a good harvest this year. I’ve had lots of peas so far, beans are just starting to be ready to pick, and I’ve started picking some tomatoes.

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 3:16 pm #

      Bonjour Crafty Gardener! I hope my tomatoes will be ready for picking when I get home! It is August I usually become most self sufficient with fruit, veg and salads. Glad you are enjoying your crops! Thanks so much for your comment :)

  4. annie_h July 20, 2013 at 3:45 pm #

    Hi Anna, hope you having a great holiday and I’m sure it won’t be so bad coming home to see how everything has grown. You have had some great crops and it looks like much more. Everytime I go to the allotment my crops seem to be growing loads each day. This weather is just perfect for growth.

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

      Hi Annie! I am wondering how the garden is getting on so it will be nice to spend time there and enjoy the crops. I bet everything is huge by now! I just hope the sprinkler system has worked!! Glad to hear your crops are growing too! I hope you’re still having the good weather and enjoying your time outside :)

  5. Cathy July 20, 2013 at 5:16 pm #

    Such a lot going on in your allotment, Anna – you can be justifiably proud of what you have achieved. My courgettes are looking particularly good this year but i can’t say I have any other veg to be proud of! Keep on enjoying your holiday and have a safe journey home!

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 5:24 pm #

      Thanks Cathy! I’m glad this is a good courgette year, one veg you can rely on! I was very upset with my crop last year. Hopefully I’ll have timed it right to have courgettes and tomatoes cropping at the same time, the are lovely together. Hope you’re well and thanks so much for dropping by:)

  6. gardeninacity July 20, 2013 at 6:00 pm #

    Hi Anna. Your veg garden is looking great. I especially like the currants and gooseberries.And the potatoes and strawberries – fantastic! I’m a minimalist when it comes to growing veg, I’ve just got tomatoes and herbs. They seem to be doing pretty well so far.

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 9:07 pm #

      Hi Jason, I started with tomatoes, you can’t beat growing your own! The taste is so much better. I love a good herb selection too, I have a lot dotted about in various places. I think you mentioned before that you have good markets with fresh local produce and it seems to me you enjoy your plants and flowers so much that they take up your time. Adam is the same, it’s me with the veg passion so together we manage to have both! Thanks so much for dropping by dude! :)

  7. djdfr July 20, 2013 at 7:28 pm #

    Starting to get courgettes. The beans finally have flowers. Lettuce is doing well. Tomatoes forming in the greenhouse and also one cucumber.

    • Anna B July 20, 2013 at 9:09 pm #

      Hi there! That’s great. I wonder if your crops grow bigger since you’re in France? The veg I saw growing in north Spain last year was enormous! Thanks so much for your comment and happy gardening! :)

  8. Holleygarden July 20, 2013 at 9:20 pm #

    Hope you have a great vacation. Your vegetables are quite impressive. I have never had produce produce as well as yours seem to be! I hope when you return home, all is still as beautiful.

    • Anna B July 22, 2013 at 8:13 am #

      I am very intrigued to see how the garden is getting on, there’s the possibility that the crops have been eaten by pests! I hope not! Thanks so much for your comment :)

  9. Cathy July 21, 2013 at 6:59 am #

    All those veggies look great! It’s a mixed year for me. The herbs have finally got going, the salad leaves and radishes have been great, and the tomatoes are looking good, but courgettes are sparse and the chard is not doing as well as last year… I think it’s often luck with the weather when the plants are young that makes the difference. Enjoy the rest of your holiday Anna! :D

    • Anna B July 22, 2013 at 8:16 am #

      Hi Cathy! You’ve just reminded me that I’ve forgotten to plant chard!! I’ll have to give it a go when I get back. Glad to hear your herbs and salads are doing well, funny about the Courgettes? Veg can be temperamental though, crops can vary so much from one plot to the next at the allotments & we can never work out why?! Thanks so much for dropping by :)

  10. Christina July 21, 2013 at 8:39 am #

    Enjoy France! They’ll be plenty to do when you get home. Harvesting is now the major task here.

    • Anna B July 22, 2013 at 8:18 am #

      Hi Christina! Yes I’ll have to make sure I take lots of tubs and baskets out with me so I can collect the harvest! Thanks so much for dropping by :)

  11. notjustgreenfingers July 21, 2013 at 10:32 am #

    Hi Anna, hope you are enjoying your holiday. Everything on your plot looks really good, you should have a great harvest when you get back.

    • Anna B July 22, 2013 at 8:20 am #

      Hello there! I’ve heard from family back home that everything is growing well so I’m looking forward to seeing what’s been happening when we get back. Thanks so much for dropping by :)

  12. Allotment adventures with Jean July 22, 2013 at 8:46 am #

    I enjoyed this walk around your allotment too. Looks like you are in for a good harvest this year. I have seen on the news that the UK have been in the grip of a heatwave. Bet everything will have really taken off in your ‘lottie’ by the time you get home.

    • Anna B July 22, 2013 at 12:58 pm #

      Thanks Jean! Yes I’ve heard the same about the heatwave so everything will be either enormous or dried out! Preferably not the latter! Hope you’re well and thanks so much for your comment :)

  13. Ricki Grady July 22, 2013 at 6:47 pm #

    We tried some new tricks, but the jury is still out on whether it will make a difference in the harvest. I usually avoid going away during the growing season, but coming home to a garden far advanced from where it was is a fun experience.

    • Anna B July 22, 2013 at 8:28 pm #

      However we time it we seem to be away at some key time in the gardening calendar, we often miss the one and only week or so of British summer!

  14. rogerbrook July 23, 2013 at 6:35 am #

    You might get a nice surprise with your curcurbits when you get home. Mine have just loved our current heatwave and my ridge cucumbers, butternut squashes and dwarf pumkins are bombing away!
    Like an idiot I forgot to sow my courgettes this year but my friend came to my rescue and gave me four plants and belatedly we have just eaten our first ones.

    • Anna B July 25, 2013 at 7:56 am #

      Hi Roger! It’s great to get plant donations isn’t it! I’ve been given a cape gooseberry this year that I’m very excited about. Glad to hear your plants have enjoyed the heatwave!

  15. Caro July 23, 2013 at 6:55 pm #

    Hi Anna! Hope you and Adam had/are having a wonderful time in Provence – such a beautiful area of France and hopefully not too hot for you! Your allotment looks wonderful; I’m sure your plants will have thrived in the sunshine here, plus we had massive thunderstorms over the country yesterday so hopefully some of that rain reached your veg! I’ve had good amounts of beans and the fruit is also looking good here. Everything else a bit behind, as indeed I was when it came to sowing!! Ah well, there’s always next year!! Caro x

    • Anna B July 25, 2013 at 7:58 am #

      Hi Caro! I think everyone got off to a slow start this year didn’t they with all the cold weather. Typical that we go away during the british summer ;) ! Lets hope the veggies catch up with the fruit and beans soon :) x

  16. Anna July 23, 2013 at 8:10 pm #

    Looks as if you were enjoying some of the results of all your hard work before you left Anna and no doubt with all this sunshine there will be more to harvest in your return. Hope that you are having a great holiday. We went on a river cruise last September from Lyon down to Avignon which we thoroughly enjoyed – a lovely part of France. Have you been fortunate enough to see the lavender fields?

    • Anna B July 25, 2013 at 8:00 am #

      Hi Anna! Yes we have seen some lavender but we’ve not been to the main lavender area so missed the full extent of it. I just love the planting out here, it’s so inspiring. I’ve been to a gorgeous perfume garden and can’t wait to share some blog posts about France! Thanks so much for dropping by :)

  17. Samantha Fernley (@Happyhomebird) July 24, 2013 at 8:50 am #

    I’m just off to check my courgettes now and my broad beans. I was late with them so here’s hoping I finally have some. I’ve grown some little cucumbers too but so far have had just 1 measly fruit on it.

    • Anna B July 25, 2013 at 8:01 am #

      I hope they catch up! My cucumbers seemed very late, I’ll probably give them a bit of tomato food when I get back – no idea if it works but I tend to give everything in the greenhouse a dash of it in the hope it will help! Thanks so much for dropping by! Hope your courgettes and broad beans are doing well :)


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