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Archive for the ‘fruit’ Category

Mantis Tiller modification

Monday, June 16th, 2014

A few years ago, based on the recommendations from my Bro’ at Groundscaper, I purchased a Mantis Tiller, it’s brilliant, but I have just one complaint which I think is a design fault, the plastic throttle body, which is built into the carburetor body, keeps snapping off, as this is a weak spot.

The petrol 4-stroke Mantis Tiller uses a Honda GX25 engine, which is common to many petrol operated garden tools. The problem is that Honda do not supply the plastic throttle body as separate part, and you need to purchase a new GX25 carburetor body, price from Mantis UK - £95!

The support man from Mantis, did state, they could be purchased on eBay for £10!

This is the replacement part I purchased from Hong Kong - here, if you look closely at eBay, there are some available with a metal frame here

Originally, I was just going to transfer the plastic frame from the new part to the old part, but it did not fit, so a complete carburetor body swap was required, but before fixing back onto the engine, I made the following mod, to strengthen the plastic throttle attachment (Thanks Mike B. for the suggestion!)

some pictures

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Strawberry Fields Forever

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

Let me take you down
Cause I’m going to Strawberry Fields
Nothing is real

(c) John Lennon, 1966

strawberryfields1

strawberryfields2

Okay, not exactly Strawberry Fields, but my allotment!

But it still my favourite fruit, and Beatles Song written by John Lennon!

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Andy’s Asparagus

Saturday, June 2nd, 2012

My joints are aching, I spent a long day on the allotment preparing trenches for my asparagus beds yesterday. I’ve planted four beds of asparagus with the following asparagus varities - Backlim, Gijnlim and Purple Passion.

In the past few weeks, I’ve also added another two rows of strawberries, to add to the existing two rows of Elsanta, I’ve added Amelia and Marshmarvel. Amelia is a late cropping variety from June to September, Marshmarvel is an early cropping variety from May to September, peaks in June, with possible second crop later in the season. Elsanta is a mid cropping variety from June to July. So better ask my Mum, how to make “Jam’n’ Jerusalem”!  because I could have a few starberries next year!

I’ve also added a few rows of sweetcorn, planted jerusalem artichokes and horseradish, completed moving the goji berry and raspberry bushes, I think the redcurrent, blackcurrant and whitecurrent, gooseberry bushes have not taken - possibly too dry.

My water butts have arrived, I’ve finished preparing the rest of the allotment to add other vegetables this week. The allotment has been bone dry, hence the need for water butts onsite to store water, we did have a wet day last week, which has helped me with not watering every day, since the rain.

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Ye Olde Plum tree has fallen down

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Our old victoria plum tree has finally crashed to the ground, and killed my greenhouse!

It’s of no surprise, the crop of plums has been failing over the last six years, it’s estimated to be 200-250 years old! It was left over from the orchard before the house was built in the 1860s!

but left in its shadow are two smaller trees, that may fruit.

I do not have a chainsaw, and the trunk is too large for me to cut by electric saw or bow saw, so I’ve asked my neighbour to pop round with this chainsaw, to cut up into logs. (I don’t have a chainsaw yet!)

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Andy’s Strawberry Plants - Elsanta

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

I purchased 30 bare root Elsanta strawberry plants from Unwins, many weeks ago, (just under a tenner!) and I’ve been waiting for the allotment to dry out, to plant them out, but I could not wait any longer, so I hope they enjoy boggy waterlogged ground!

To mitigate the risk of failure, I’ve planted 10 plants in an old shipping crate, used to deliver a very heavy UPS, and 20 plants at the allotment.

So today, I planted them out, it was like digging wholes in the sand at the beach, when they tide has just gone out!

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More April Showers on Andy’s Allotment!

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

rhubarb, rhubarb, rhubarb, it’s still damn raining, and the allotment is disappearing under more water, I’ve planted my comfrey, rhubarb and horse raddish. But the ground is far too wet, to plant my potatoes, onions, garlic and shallots, they will just rot in the ground.

My strawberry plants and asparagus corns have arrived, I’m not sure when I’ll get these planted now as the allotment is too wet, and looking at the weather forecasts, rain until Saturday!

here are some more photographs of the allotment developing…

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April Showers on Andy’s Allotment!

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

the weather has been terrible, and we’ve been plagued with heavy showers, I was waiting for the ground to settle, now I’ll be waiting for it to dry out…or maybe a rice paddy or water cress?

looks like planting will have to wait, the allotments, are rather wet……

andysallotment-april122012-1

andysallotment-april122012-2

andysallotment-april122012-3I have planted something, I’ve moved some Comfrey “Bocking 14″, up to the allotment plot, but must move my rhubarb and raspberry canes up shortly, if the ground is not to wet.

My Allotment is at http://gravelpitallotments.org.uk/

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Andy’s Allotment Easter 2012 Update

Saturday, April 7th, 2012

I’ve been preparing the ground on the allotment, which measures 20m x 5m. Breaking the soil, weeding and removing stones and tree roots.

(it burns off those Easter Eggs!)

Ready for me to plant, potatoes, white and red onions, shallots, garlic, carrots, beetroot, horse radish, asparagus, raspberries,  strawberries, goji berries, rhubarb - just a few things to get me started.

Here are some photographs, of my progress so far…

Andy's Allotment on 21 March 2012

Andy's Allotment on 21 March 2012

In the super, summer week in March, the allotment looked like this! But I was a little busy, to prepare the ground.

Andy's Allotment on 4 April 2012

Andy's Allotment on 4 April 2012

April showers, we did not have heavy snow as forecast, just missed out, bit it left the allotments very wet!

Andy's Allotment on 5 April 2012

Andy's Allotment on 5 April 2012

Start of preparing the gound…

Andy's Allotment on 7a April 2012

Andy's Allotment Start of 7 April 2012

Ploughed the day before…

Andy's Allotment on 7 April 2012

Andy's Allotment End of 7 April 2012

finally tilled….I’m waiting for the ground to dry out before creating my trenches for potatoes and asparagus.

A funny picture, this is Plot 2, it shows how wet the allotments have been..

Plot 2 next to my allotment! see how wet it is!

Plot 2 next to my allotment! see how wet it is!

My Allotment is at http://gravelpitallotments.org.uk/

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Our Garden in March 2012

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Our front garden at the end of March 2012, before the frost came at the weekend.

Now the Magnolia flowers have gone brown!

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Andy’s Allotment

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

These are pictures of My Allotment, Plot 1 at Gravel Pit Allotments.

andysallotment1

andysallotment2

andysallotment3

Hopefully, can do something like this again…

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