This week I discovered I wasn't the only one excited to see our Purple Sprouting Broccoli grow and develop, it seems the pigeons were too. And while I knew it might happen, I hoped my more regular visits to the allotment - albeit limited to weekends - might be enough. I'm sure those visits helped but as the pigeons, I'm assuming they're the culprits, have no restrictions on when they visit I was always going to be up against it.
As we arrived on the plot we did our customary walk round to survey what's happened since our last visit, which at this time of the year doesn't take long, we noticed that something had started to strip the brassicas leaves. Mostly the purple sprouting bit had been left, so there was only one thing to do.
And that was pick as much as I could!
We left with a couple of brown bags full of purple sprouting broccoli, which let's be honest isn't really a problem as we eat bucket loads of the stuff at this time of year and quite often in pasta with chilli.
While I was at it I picked the small cavolo nero too, just in case they moved onto that. We've eaten that already and very nice it was too.
A rookie mistake?
As we left the allotment we wandered around looking at the other plots to see how other purple sprouting broccoli growers were faring. And to try and work out if we'd made a rookie mistake. We left partly reassured as some plants looked in a similar state to ours, but others had taken more precautions to protect their harvest, so next year I've a feeling that we'll be following their lead and rigging up something similar.
But in the meantime we're munching our way through our purple sprouting broccoli mountain...