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Big allotment challenge week 4 review

by Diane - May 7th, 2014.
Filed under: TV.

The big allotment challenge week 4 review
The Big Allotment Challenge Episode 4

Hosted by Fern Britton, the fourth round continues the search to find Britain’s best growers. Having reached the half way point, six pairs remain ready to battle it out to harvest prizewinning fruit, vegetables and flowers ready for the show bench.

For the first time in the competition Jim Buttress sets them the tricky task of growing in the greenhouse, he wants to see a faultless aubergine on the show bench. The specimen flower continues to test the gardeners and Jonathan Moseley sets the challenge of making a topiary tree. Finally, preserves expert Thane Prince is expecting to taste prizewinning pickle and piccalillis on the show bench.

Which pair will continue to triumph and who will fail to blossom and leave the allotment for good?

This week it’s :
Aubergines, Sunflowers and Piccalilli.

Greenhosue plants can suffer more than those outside. Need help with pollination – not enough insects, use earbuds or paintbrush.
All growing grafted apart from April and Jo, and Rupert and Dimi.
Greenhouse hot – needs shading. USB fan powered by solar to help breeze.
Mishapen veg caused by environmental or embryonic damage.Not good for show bench, but as every gardener knows it all tastes good!
Bright, blemish free, shiny,

Jo and Avril – Long purple
Kate and Eleanor – Scorpio – Best in show
Rupert and Dimi – Ivory
Gary and Pete – Scorpio
Alex and Ed – Black beauty
Shirley and Victoria – Moneymaker

3 perfect Sunflowers and a floral topiary Tree
Bright leaf, good head, straight stem.

Jo and Avril – Velvet queen
Kate and Eleanor – Teddy bear
Rupert and Dimi – Bicentenary
Gary and Pete – Harlequin and Teddy bear (I’ve grown this one it’s cute!)
Alex and Ed – Russian giant << best in show for sunflowers and << best in show for topiary tree
Shirley and Victoria – Valentine

floral topiary Tree – Line pot, pack with foam, then wet foam so it’s tightly packed. Use canes to make trunk, Wet sphere on top of canes. Wire on.
Sunflowers need to go in first cos of thick stems, use foliage, cover base.
Needs visual and actual balance.

30 minutes preparation and then finish the challenge the next day because it’s pickles and they need to get moisture out of the vegetables by dry salting or brining them overnight.

Pickles and Piccalilli
Picadilly should be smooth and well balanced with crisp veg.

Jo and Avril – Christmas piccalilli and beeroot and orange pickle
Kate and Eleanor – patch piccalilli and gherkin and runner bean pickle
Rupert and Dimi – courgette and vegetable picalilly. Courgette pickle.
Gary and Pete – Ploughmans pickle and quickalily. << best in show!
Alex and Ed – his own recipe for piccalilli which doesn’t brine, Pickled beetroot
Shirley and Victoria – misci picalilly and red radish kimchi

So who goes home this week?

Shirley and Victoria!
Well that was a tight run thing .. I did think Rupert and Dimi might be up for the chop this week, or even Avril and Jo.

Not sure I enjoyed it as much as last weeks. Maybe I have no interest in growing aubergines?