Waiting for a break in the weather to get jobs done up the allotment is like waiting for your teenage son to tidy his room. It simply ain't gonna happen. Well, not unless you put a rocket up his arse and offer the threat of eviction.
Sadly, that's not an option with Mother Nature, so it came down to a case of 'bol*ocks, I've jobs to do and I'm going to get them done. Rain or no rain'.
The upshot is, everything is now in. All the plants I've nurtured from seed are finally in the ground. The courgettes, sweetcorn, cucumbers, squash and a few cabbage have made their way to their new home, where they will no doubt be battered by the wind and attacked by slugs. Providing the snails don't get there first...
I don't hold out much hope for them, as something has successfully blighted most of the other crops this year. The young pears on the pear tree have all disappeared, there are no goose-gogs on the gooseberry bushes, the parsnip seed all got washed away and only about half the second-early potatoes have made it through. And that was using the BIG tubers.
The first earlies managed to get established before the deluge of rain in April, so they all appeared, but any hope of a decent harvest was taken away on my latest visit when 'Blackleg' appears to be evident.
"Tell-tale sign is the blackening of the stem at, and below, ground level. The leaves turn yellow and wilt and the haulms wither.This disease attacks early in the season and is worst on heavy soils and rainy weather" - that'll be me then.
On a more upbeat note, the strawberries have produced and jam has been made. The hop plants are growing at an incredible rate and little'uns apple tree is full of apples. Unless, of course, whatever stole away my pears, comes and nabs these too.
I'll leave you with a shot of the compost heap. It's probably the most productive area of the plot right now, covered in Phacelia. So even if I'm not happy, at the least the bees are...