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Bramham Blogs

Attack from an allotment pest


Be careful what you wish for they say and this morning in the wonderful fresh snow I spotted unfamiliar footprints. I was on the trail of this new creature as it criss crossed the snow and followed the well worn paths in the allotment until it went out under the fence near the main gate and I got a very strong smell of fox. We are very lucky in the allotment as we have only ever had a few fox attacks while I have been there, but I guess with the world covered in snow a hungry fox had come to have a look round for easy pickings. Thankfully no-one came under attack this time but that can’t be said of another visitor the pigeon! I was devastated yesterday afternoon to find my brassicas torn to shreds by them. Again I’m guessing because of the covering of snow the nice greenery poking out of the top was just too much to resist. All the books tell you to keep your brassicas netted and we always do but there comes that point in winter when you want to harvest and they are growing tall enough to strain against the netting. So you take it off and hope they’ll be okay. I have never actually suffered an attack but of course there is always a first time. I’m not too fussed about the Brussels as they are nearing their end but the purple sprouting broccoli which takes up space from summer doesn’t actually produce anything edible until late feb/mar so to have those shredded is a real pain. I’ve been up in the mud and rain to cover them this morning and hoping that it’s not too little too late. The sprouts tend to come from where the leaves join the stem so if I can just keep the plants alive we should hopefully still get a crop even if it is a little less that I would have hoped for.