Dare one say it – suddenly spring seems more intentional, as if it’s meaning to stay for more than five minutes? These lesser celandines were blooming hell for leather yesterday when I was delivering stuff to the allotment. Even the spider seems to be having a bit of a sun bathe (apologies arachnophobes) rather than being sneekily on the hunt.

Things being transported to the plot included three black bin bags of leaves gathered from mother-in-law’s lawn (they will take a couple of years to turn into very useful leaf mould) and twenty new seven-foot canes. These last are not for this year’s runner beans, but for peas. After seeing last summer’s mega-pea-crop success of fellow allotmenteer, Dave, I thought I would give climbing pea Alderman a go. This is a heritage variety, apparently favoured by ‘good old boys on their allotments’, and not much to be found elsewhere.

You need to treat them like runner beans using plenty of tall supports because they may end up growing six to eight feet tall i.e. heading for around 2 metres. The beauty of this variety is that it crops without surplus production over several months. Whereas modern pea varieties tend to produce all at once, which is why you need to sow the seed successionally e.g. every couple of weeks, which can be a faff if you lose track of time.

At the moment the pea seeds are just germinating  (I sow in trays due to allotment mice), and yesterday I moved the first batch into the cold frame, so I truly am hoping that winter has gone. I will report back in a few months time on how this good old girl is getting on with the Alderman.

copyright 2018 Tish Farrell

30 thoughts on “Spring?

  1. Looks like a Nursery Web Spider – Pisauridae, Rothus sp. ( don’t quote me! )

    I’m still harvesting a few beans here and there but I’ll probably have to call it quits soon. last week that seem to be doing all right so far.
    Still digging up a few taters and planted some sweet potatoes.

    Still very warm down here but the cold will arrive in a week or three and then ….

    1. Am impressed you can even begin to identify the spider, Ark. Have been furtling in my compost bins today. Very gunky. And not even a fraction of all I need anywhere near ready. Ah well. Must make make more heaps!

      1. We have that spider over here … or something very similar.

        Have been furtling in my compost bins today. Very gunky.

        I love it when you talk dirty!

  2. I look longingly at your lovely yellow blooms. Another 5-10cm of snow in our forecast. Canadian spring is taking on a very different look this year. 🙂

  3. I have been thinking about you and yes it does seem that maybe we are on the turn. A full day of sunshine yesterday and although hazy, still much better today….it feels so good. Have a lovely weekend. janet 🙂

  4. I wonder how this variety came by the name Alderman. Were there Aldermen who ” when they reachj(ed) a large (prosperous and pompous) size.. remain (ed) exquisitely sweet”? 😀
    I am sure you, good old girl, will get on famously with your Alderman of the vegetable variety.

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