Sunday 10 May 2020

Lockdown Day 48 - Lavender

The weather has changed dramatically compared to yesterday which was warm enough to be out in light clothes even when cycling. Today a cold north-easterly wind has got up, it is overcast and there's been spots of rain.

The visit to the allotment this morning was fairly brief, just enough to put in a few potatoes I found in the spare room still chitting which I had forgotten about and do a little watering as even though there's been a small amount of rain it has been barely enough to wet the ground and certainly not enough to make up for the drought we seem to be having.

The lavender plant we have in the allotment is wearing out. I have cut out all the dead wood just leaving those parts that are still growing and flowering but it is time to replace it or at least start another one off. The lavender attracts lots of bees, hoverflies, butterflies and moths and it is good to help pollinators.

One late summer evening I found two dozen moths all feeding on the lavender flowers. I have bought a couple of new plants, one of them for the allotment and one to keep either in the garden or in the back yard in a pot. Various flowers in the allotment act as 'distraction' plants so that insects such as this white butterfly feed on the blooms rather than laying eggs on cabbages, and blackflies are attracted to poppies rather than the broad beans. We have marigolds to help protect against nematodes. In the summer we also have nasturtiums that are also good as a ground cover in the winter as the leaves and stems rot down. They need taming though as they will try and take over the top section of the plot if left to their own devices!

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