How I built a cucumber support for free


You know that niggling feeling you get when you know you haven’t finished a job? My three Marketmore cucumber plants have been steadily creeping across the polytunnel table, outgrowing their small pots and dying to go outside in the ground.

I knew I wanted to save space this year and build a trellis for the cucumbers to grow vertically…but with very limited funds and time I was stuck for weeks deciding how to do it. I was watering the polytunnel on Tuesday when I had a brain wave 💡 I still had the frame of a (flyaway) greenhouse that I dismantled early in the year. I also had some scrap plastic netting left over and even a few metres of wire that keeps chicken wire bound together. With these materials I made a trellis without spending a single penny!
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Strawberry Success 

 I’ve put a lot of effort into producing a good strawberry crop this year and my hard work is paying off! 

Early in the season I mulched the strawberry patch with manure, removed all the nettles that stung me last year, I kept them well watered throughout the dry spell and even made a strawberry cage to protect them from the bird.

With these improvements along with the warm, dry weather (bye bye slugs! 👋🏻) I’ve been harvesting a good punnet or more every day or so!

How do you like to eat your strawberries? I’m enjoying lots of brandy snap baskets with ice cream topped with berries! I also love to make rhubarb and strawberry crumble which I only discovered last year as I didn’t have enough rhubarb! You should try it, it’s devine! 

I built a wall.

A few weeks ago I hit the jackpot. I found a huge pile of sandstone up for grabs at the allotments as I collected from the communal wood chip pile to make my first path. I had already spoken to Stevie who arranges the deliveries and he said I could take as many as I liked! I didn’t know what I wanted them for at the time so I just loaded my barrow with as much as I could carry.  Five, ten, fifteen, then twenty or more I wheeled up a small mountain hill to my allotment.

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Building a Strawberry Cage 

There’s been a lot of construction and heavy lifting on the allotment these past few weeks and the plot is really starting to look organised! At the weekend I focused on the strawberry patch. I have three beds of plants, one of which is entirely runners from last year’s plants so I’m not expecting much fruit from them in their first season. None the less, all the plants are in bloom and I’m expecting a bountiful harvest. As soon as the flowers drop and fruits begin to form, it’s time to protect them from hungry birds. 

I learnt the hard way to not use netting. If you use it m on your allotment please take care not to make it a danger for other animals! Last year a fledgling robin got caught in my strawberry netting and it was an awful experience.  Continue reading