14th Oct 2016: Although we are coming to an end with some crops there are still lots of vegetables to pick on the allotment. The runner beans have finished and the foliage has been cut down. We always leave the roots in the ground as they release nitrogen back into the soil but eventually they too will come up and we will dig a trench to fill with manure and compost ready for planting next year.
The raspberries are slowing down now, though there will be the odd picking until November at a guess. Raspberries are such good value for the amount of space they take up. We only have 5 plants but we have picked a good sized bowl of fruit every other day since August. There have been plenty to use for breakfasts and desserts and any excess is now down in the freezer for winter. I always freeze raspberries in a sieve. I wash them and shake them dry, then place the sieve over a container to catch any drips. This way of freezing means that you can tip the raspberries when frozen into a plastic bag or container and with a little encouragement they will become free-flow making them easier to use. When I look at the cost of raspberries in the supermarket I guess we have saved well over £100 by having our own plants – plus ours are organic. Definitely worth the effort.
I have been juicing celery for the past few months as the plants we grew contained rather a lot of outside stalks and leaves and not much heart, plus there was quite a bit of slug damage. Now that my juicer is out and the celery is coming to an end I’m going to juice some kale and perpetual cabbage. The perpetual cabbage (see photo) has done really well and we have lots of kale. Green juices are good at removing acidity from our bodies. I will juice a couple of times a week as a health boost and to make the best use of our excess produce. I may well add a few apples to the mix as friends keep arriving and leaving bags of apples from their trees on our doorstep. They all know that I’m a great scavenger!