With the return of warmer weather and longer days, May often presents us with some of the best growing conditions of the year. The fruit trees on my plot are all coming into bud and I hope for some decent fruiting this year, as last year’s late frosts and damp weather were a disaster for fruit tree pollination. The late frosts killed off much of the fruit blossom before pollination could take place and a severe lack of pollinating insects added to the problem. Gardeners blame the farmers for this phenomenon with their widespread use of chemicals. Suffice to say it was not a bountiful year fruitwise.
Early Spring generally marks the start of the gardening season ---- but not this year. Having suffered the coldest March for 30 years, things are a bit behind schedule. Last year at this time, we were basking in temperatures of 23.C ( as was Cyprus ).This year --- 3.C . with a liberal coating of snow over most of the country !
January is one of the bleakest months on the allotment . Now is a good time to decide on your crop rotation stategy for the Spring in the comfort of your living room.
I went to my allotment last Thursday and everything was covered in a blanket of wet snow.
The underlying ground was also frozen hard and so there was no point in attempting any digging -
December can be a very bleak month and with the shorter days the only time you are likely to be at the allotment when there is any daylight left is at the weekend.
I was at my allotment briefly on Sunday and discovered that a large flap of felt had been partly ripped from the roof of my shed ,but was fortunately still attached which means I can repair it with some cold set bitumin compound.
In Late Autumn as Winter grows ever nearer , trees are losing their leaves everywhere .Although the allotment is largely dormant at this time , there are still a number of crops which can be harvested including leeks, celeriac, winter cabbages, brussels sprouts , spinach and salad plants .
Now is an ideal time to carry out all of those little jobs which you have been putting off ,like clearing out the shed , cleaning the greenhouse, cleaning & oiling your tools, emptying and turning over the contents of your compost containers.
In Mid Autumn there is a distinct chill in the air and the days are becoming much shorter .The growing season is almost at and end and vegetation dies back and trees and shrubs lose their leaves.
Despite occasional sunny days, ground frosts are much more likely and there have already been a few over the last couple of weeks. Strong winds and heavy rain are now also a distinct possiibility with rain in particular causing localised flooding and causing clay rich soils to becomewaterlogged.
Late Summer is usually the last of the hot months and is often dry and sunny . However in some places the late summer can be prone to thunder storms and as a consequence it may tend to be humid and dull providing the perfect conditions for pests and diseases to thrive in.