Allotment No.41 – #1
It's official, Allotment No. 41 is about to be cultivated.
Introductions at the allotment
So yes, I’ve taken the plunge once again and signed up for an allotment, my second attempt and I’m really excited. Which means you lucky people are going to get to hear all about it, every step of the way. Highlights will be posted here and other stuff posted on the instagram page.
Three great things about allotment 41 straight off the bat is that it was already covered in thick black plastic. Normally I’m not a fan of plastic of course, but this isn’t the single use stuff, it was put down by the council at the request of the neighbouring allotmenteers to kill off the weeds, I hear it was rather overgrown and causing problems. I have the use of it for another couple of months as I prepare the site. So that’s saved loads of time, and my back. Although once the remaining monster weeds have been tackled, I’ll be adopting the no-dig method, previously established in my back garden.
Secondly, he allotment came with a free bath! Not sure if it’s going to become a pond (discussion with the council and allotment committee currently underway, so more on that later), or it could become a planter, or funnily enough, a water container or some kinda hydroponic experiment set up perhaps? Too soon?
Thirdly, there is a mains water tap situated at the corner of allotment 41. Right on the corner. I couldn’t have asked for more. Apart from a shed I guess. There’s no shed.
Well there we have it. I am the proud custodian of 5 rods of ground. I nearly signed up for a full 10 rod area but glad I backed out at the last minute.
In case you’re wondering, in old money 10 rods = 302 square yards or 253 square metres to the rest of us.
Half a plot is more than enough to get on with. Or so I am told by some of those who have been working their square yardage for some years. So far I’ve met some great characters (names altered to retain anonymity and all that) James (big beard, knows everyone), Stewart (retired and still getting started), Bob (collects sheds) and Paul (likes asparagus and strawberries) and all know a thing or two about veg. From the few chats we’ve already had, I think I’ve passed the initial casual assessment to see if I’ll fit in. I do, I’m sure. Which also means lots of free advice on tap, it’ll be interesting if any of it include quirky old gardening folklore advice, especially when up against this new age “no-Dig” hippy stuff. What’s wrong with putting ya back into it anyway ay? I’ll show’em.
One initial observation though, I’ve not heard of any women allotmenteers on site yet, seems odd. It’s early days though, hope it is a bit more diverse.
No doubt I’ll also hear a tale or two, which I hope to share here if it’s not too incriminating or politically inflammatory, I’ve been told some like to talk about this here Brexit in between the weeding. So please stay tuned.
Down to business then, first port of call was to gather some inspiration and have a little walk around to see what all the others are up to. No point in reinventing the wheel is there.
The main technique that stood out is that I found that the cage technique was favourite for warding off the pigeons. A number of designs to consider here, especially for the strawberries. I’ve taken the plunge and ordered 12 ‘Cambridge Favourite’ plants from Suttons. Got a week off work coming up and some chicken wire ready. Just need the wood. Can’t wait.
Well, evening is drawing on and there’ll be lots more to be said about Allotment 41 soon enough, so from my allotment buddy and me, catch ya later.
There’s an arrow subscription button below, do stay in touch.