Finally, two days without (much) rain, and we were able to get to the allotment to cut the grass and do some much needed weeding. Then I picked our first proper crop of the year - broad beans. These are Superaquadulce, started under a cloche in March, after the soil had been warmed and dried for four weeks. The soil round here hasn't actually been dry since May 2011!
While in the photo at the top you can see a whopper pod, which is well over 10 inches long, the vast majority are falling into the 8.5-10 inch bracket, this one is just under 10 inches. This is partly luck - I started them early, so they had chance to pollinate before the weather turned really bad. Then all the rain swelled the pods quickly, broad beans really like rain. Other growers on the plots who sowed later haven't been so lucky. Having said that, there is only one more picking left on the plants as the later flowers didn't get pollinated.
Although a few have slug and snail damage, most are in really good shape and produced excellent, tasty beans. These will be in my lunchbox tomorrow, in a salad. If you're in the north and west of the UK, where we get all the crappy, wet weather, I do recommend these beans. Germination is good despite our cold clay soil, and if you use a cloche to get them started you have a good chance of an excellent crop.
Finally, here's a picture of my favourite geranium, Russel Pritchard. This is actually outside my Mum's house but I claim ownership as I gave her a bit of my original plant, which has now grown into this. Mine has since died, so I really must take a piece back this year. It likes the sun, and in this position it gets the sun every morning, well, when we have any sun, that is!