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Comfrey Tea

May 31, 2017

Three weeks ago I cut a row of healthy comfrey leaves and laid them in a 30 cm deep trough before raking the soil back over prior to planting the climbing French beans. A further quantity enough to half fill  a 2 gallon bucket and weighed down with a brick was then topped up with water. It is now black and smelly and will be diluted 1-20 in a watering can and used as a feed on the base of squash, courgette and tomato plants. I chose Comfrey ‘Bocking 14’  a Russian variety that won’t self-seed and here is the row three weeks after its major cut and soon it will be ready to cut again.

Weeding rows of onions on the allotment this morning I accidentally forked one out and to my dismay there were signs of onion white rot. White mould was clinging to the base of the bulb so there was no choice but to harvest the lot. Luckily the disease appears to be very limited with only five out of the fifty showing any signs of rot.

I brought the damaged onions pus the weeds from the bed home for the council green bin where green waste gets heated to a high degree. It’s a serious disease and can lurk in the soil for up to then years and it can affect both garlic and leeks.  Crop rotation will help but there’s a need to be vigilant especially when rain in warm weather lingers on for several days. The healthy onions are now on a frame in the garden shed to dry out. The bed will be used for above ground crops both now and next year with borlotti and climbing French beans to go in next.

The broad beans are looking healthy and should be cropping in a week or two.

The purple pea pods are clambering up the netting.

And in the last two weeks the beetroot has emerged in four distinct rows and should be ready to harvest in about five weeks. More were sown today along with radish and dill.

Self-seeded ‘Love in a Mist’  has to be ruthlessly evicted from the base of the raspberries and is providing endless pots of lovely flowers.

There’s no new recipe to show for this week because we ate Nigella’s cheese stars before I remembered to take a photograph. I cut them round with a sherry glass and they were great and will be made again next week.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. Lucy moore permalink
    May 31, 2017 5:20 pm

    Sooo productive Sue, and beautiful to boot!

    • May 31, 2017 6:16 pm

      Hi Lucy
      Loving your images on Instagram of Connemara​. Stunning landscape and glorious weather by the looks of things.

  2. June 1, 2017 4:58 pm

    Never used comfrey as a fertilizer before, but I will follow you instructions and see how I get on. Sorry to hear about your onions. I’ve given up with all alliums since rust romps through the lot (even garlic and chives). Haha, I will wait to see the cheese stars then!

  3. June 3, 2017 9:52 am

    Thanks for reminding me to make some Comfrey tea, Sue. I have the type that flowers and may hopefully set seed as I need all I can grow. They won’t become a problem as they’ll only live where there is irrigation (an advantage of the hot dry climate,Love the Love in a mist; it should grow easily here but I’ve had no success whatsoever!

    • June 3, 2017 11:00 am

      I have two separate beds and use it all the time. I have just seen it cut and laid on the surface of the ground around climbing beans. This will be copied next week.

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