Allotment and Edibles
Last week I signed up for a new allotment. And by new, I mean new – this is a blank canvas virgin plot on a new site in our village. I am extremely excited by this development as I have been chomping at the bit to grow some proper veg but I’ve never had the space to indulge. My cottage garden is all ornamental as it was when we bought it 4 years ago. The garden is our outdoor dining room and needs to be ‘guest appropriate’. I have sequestered a small corner to be my greenhouse but that’s been the extent of my edible space.
The space is a flat, open, 10m x 10m site. The soil is gorgeous. So far I have taken off the turf and planned the layout.
The turf lifting was a hell of a palaver. Having hired the machine online on Monday (when it had rained for 2 days before a forecasted clear day) I arrived at the hire shop to find they didn’t have one in stock. I finally got it on Thursday but the blade refused to move. After meeting some more of the other allotment holders to see if any of them knew had to work the thing we discovered that a fan belt had come off. This sorted I enlisted my longsuffering wife and dad to help roll and lift the turf. After our refreshment break, the stupid thing broke again. This time it was unrepairable and had to be returned to the shop. Friday morning I spent hours cutting and lifting and piling the remaining area (the uneven bits of earth in the foreground above are my hard work by hand).
We have bought a small shed and some wood for raised beds (with the help of dad’s van) and when we have a day when the wind isn’t threatening to knock us over we’ll put it up.
All the excitement of the plot has gotten me over-excited so I’ve splurged my birthday and Christmas money on seeds and supplies. My mum has declared that I have a problem – a seed addiction. The rule for the plot is going to follow the well-trodden lines that it should contain only things that I love to eat, are expensive or not available to buy, and of inferior quality if purchased from the supermarket. I’m including unusual carrots, beetroots, Romanesco Cauliflower, PSB, 2 types of sweetcorn, squash, herbs, fruit and cut flowers.
One of the allotment beds is going to be filled by herbs so I bought some small plants from the recent Toby’s Garden Festival.
Soft fruit is going to play a large part in the allotment so I have gone slightly mad with three varieties of Blackcurrant. I have strawberry plants and a Loganberry. On order are some strawberries and raspberry collection.
In the greenhouse
Things are growing really well in mum’s greenhouse. My tomatoes and cucumbers are not at the true leaf stage and will need potting on or transplanting into my greenhouse.