No dig diary, 3rd July 2021

It’s been a less-than-pleasant day here with persistent heavy showers and thunder, but (mostly) between the showers I’ve managed to get out and do a bit of weeding around the brassicas growing in the compost that didn’t get hot. One of the most common weeds seems to be bittercress, which sadly seems to self-pollinate under the mesh. It far outnumbers the nettles and dandelions. Fortunately I’ve caught it whilst the seeds are still green. Once they’re mature and dry off they have some fiendishly clever spring mechanism that pings the seeds off in all directions as soon as the plant is disturbed so there’s no way to stop it spreading at that point.

If weeding can be said to have a positive side, at least they’re all growing in the surface compost which makes them very easy to pull out complete with the roots, especially when it’s damp. No fork or trowel required — just grab the base of the plant and pull.

I also noticed that the broad beans are now flowering, though no self-respecting insect was going to be out flying today.

Whilst weeding I was thinking that given another month the risk of caterpillar and aphid damage to the brassicas is largely over and the mesh can come off which will make life a bit easier. But then given a month it will also be time to start thinking about crops for the winter or next spring and it’s quite shocking how fast that has crept up.

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