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18th June

The cucumber plants have the first flowers on them and they were desperately needing tied up, so at the weekend Calum and Erin came down to give me a hand, from here through out the summer they will need constant attention, with side shoots needing nipped of and they will need tied up almost every second day, eventually when they are over six feet tall we will nip the heads of to stop them growing even higher.
The reason why the Cucumbers have been neglected is that we are on the bed weeder every day, the weather has been dry and its a good job to get on with, we are now well over the crops with just the late leeks, neeps, beetroot, carrots and some brassicas to do,
When we have been over all the field once, we will then go over the weediest rows again, the bed weeding usually takes around four weeks to get over the whole field once, depending on the weather this year we have been quicker because its been so dry, then we will spend days here and there till around August going over the worst rows again.
As the boys are on the bed weeder (surprisingly enough I am not on it) when they are on the bed weeder, I am going over the field with a implement called a grubber, this is basically rows of arrow shaped blades that grub along in between the rows of the plants taking out any weeds and loosening the soil which then helps the bed weeders pull the weeds.
Last week we had some pretty strong winds and as usual it was a waiting game to see how the tunnels faired up, luckily the wind was coming in from the right direction and was hitting the willow trees first, and the tunnels survived with no damage.
Out in the field thought the fleece that is over all the Pumpkins and Sweetcorn was all ripped of and these plants took a beating from the winds, the Sweetcorn came of the worst and the crop might have received to much of a blasting to survive, the Pumpkins I think will be OK, one thing these plants do hate is cold nights and wind, so first job this week will to get a new cosy fleece over them which we will leave on till August.

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