I was beginning to feel a little overwhelmed by the plot. I have no routine, I’m out of my depth, and I don’t fully know how the year affects the site. With the turning of the season into autumn I was left floundering and wondering, “what do I do next?”
Luckily for me, that question was answered when I arrived at the plot this afternoon to discover the rabbits had well and truly breached our defences. The Jerusalem artichokes had taken a hit:
The first job of the month then was to save the surviving row of plants.
I wasn’t really sure what to do, but we had some plastic sheeting left over from a previous rabbit proofing attempt, and I thought I could wrap the base of plants in it in a bid to hide them from the rabbits.
I tied the sheeting with string and weighted the bottom with wood and earth to close any gaps a rabbit might crawl through. I’ll find out over the next few days whether it works.
In lieu of The Artichoke Incident (how it shall henceforth be referred to), I thought I would raise the fence where we have previously seen a rabbit jump it. In order to get enough wire to do this we dismantled some of the other vegetable beds. This in turn forced our hands to harvest the gourds from the pumpkin bed as they were tangled in the much needed wire.
The fence in question is a little rickety and desperately needs replacing. At the moment it isn’t particularly stable (hence all the sticks and poles holding it up) and I half suspect the rabbits are using this weakness somehow to their advantage. I secured the new wire with staples and cable ties, but I fear it won’t keep our furry friends out for long.
I had enough wire leftover to make a rudimentary container for leafmould. It’s something I’d wanted to make for a while and this seemed the perfect season to do it!
And to end the day at the allotment, I chopped the dying gourd, pumpkin and artichokes plants and completely filled the compost bin. So, today’s events have given me a lead into autumn and have thrown up some extra tasks that need doing. Thanks, rabbits!
This season’s jobs to complete:
- Dig over and weed pumpkin and gourd bed and cover with plastic sheeting
- Collect leaves for new leafmould container
- Tackle the creeping ivy The Rabbit Incident exposed
- Look into a more robust fence for the west side of the plot, and raise the fence along the north side
- Look into winter crops to plant
- Harvest Jerusalem artichokes
- Clear out one of the pallet bays at the back of the plot to use as a new compost bin
Autumn on the plot suddenly feels a lot less daunting now I have a sense of direction.