Monday, 27 April 2009

Digging for Plot 121 & other goings on....

I had some great news this week, and that was that my friend Nigel was first on the lotty waiting list and got offered plot 121, which is a 75 square metre plot.

Ok, so what's so great about that is what you are thinking right?

Well , what is so great about that is that he has heard that I was looking for a little more growing space, and he has very kindly offered me half!

Yipppppeeeeee. This will be just right for my asparagus, strawberries, pumpkins and squashes! Perfect in fact.

I couldn't believe my good luck.

The bad news is that it is covered in couch grass, along with a few brambles here and there.

We, Nigel & I, spent a little time on "making a start" on Saturday morning, and did quite well between us as you can see.

However the real work was achieved on Sunday, when 2 hours + , 3 workers, one supervisor (Arthur) Laddie the dog, a flask of home made parsnip soup, two packets of crips, some coffee a bottle of tap water and a dairy milk bar later and we got cracking.

(photo's will follow I promise)

As promised....

I am now officially a tenant of a tenant on Plot 121. It's right down the other end of the site, which is great news for me, because (a) I get to meet a whole load of new people and (b) when Mrs. Chicken Wire (see "a sad day at the plot" 9 Nov 2008)turns up to work on her "oh I bought all my plants from the garden centre cause I work full time and I haven't go time to raise from seed" (she shouts this when talking to Mavis to make sure that I hear her for some reason - very amusing) plot and shoots me dirty looks the whole time, I can escape down the other end of the site and work there instead, or use my Greenhouse which is a great hiding place at present!

News now from 144

I arrived at around 9am on Saturday morning and I put in my peas, after deliberating as to where they were to go. These are the peas that my little friends Ellie & Tom planted at the begining of the month. Two rows of support have been put up, even though I don't yet have enough peas to plant out yet. This is because the plan is to plant some each month and have a stead supply, so now there is a new batch of peas in the GH ready for next month! Good plan. Just hope it works!

I then decided that the sweetcorn was big enought to go in too. My inspiration for this choice of planting that day was fellow allotmenteer & neighbour Chris. His parents turned up with a car load of home reared allotment plants of every variety, including sweetcorn! His allotment looks "instant" and very professional already, considering his very short time scale as a plot holder. Well done Chris and I should also say thanks to his lovely wife Karen as she cooked us all the most wonderful dinner that night (so I could stay at the lotty for longer!!)

Half way through the day, my lovely hubby Ian turned up with one of my favourite lotty lunches - that good old traditional British favourite - Chips from the Fish & Chip shop. Mmmm.

He is sitting in my virtual patio using the paving slabs that will eventually help to create my real patio as a table!

Then it was a case of watering the greenhouse plants and seedlings, including the seeds I am growing for Arthur (cos lettuce) and the seedlings I have saved & and looking after for Nigel, aubergines, broccoli, sweet pepper and tomatoes (my greenhouse sounds like a rescue/distribution centre already!)

Sunday - well Sunday started bright and ealry at 9am. Quick Greenhouse check, down to the trading hut to find Nigel my new partner, got roped into weighing up some horrible smelling fertilizer and then off to 121 to crack on as mentioned above.

Exhausted and after a packet of crisps and some water, I earthed up my earlies and 2nd earlies. I then went home for a 20 minute break and returned with a new energy.

My intention was to simply mulch in my fruit trees and water the plot and go, as Mrs Chickenwire was there and the dirty looks had already started! However I got talking to my plot neighbour Paul (144a, so behind me) as he was digging away. I felt a little silly standing there chatting whilst he was digging, so I went to get my spade and fork and we both dug his plot whilst having a nice chat!

During this his son Timmy wanted help with building a scarecrow, so under my expert tuition he ended up with Scarey Scarecrow

What I said would be half an hours digging turned quickly into an hour and a half, but the amount we got dug together was brilliant. Paul was then able to go onto planting his potatoes!

I was knackered after that.

The end.

Oh, sorry, not quite the end - I forgot to mention that once back home, I helped lovely hubby Ian by joining him in a few hours of gardening, as it needed tidying up after the winter, and as we had such nice weather it was too good an opportunity to miss.


Choco said...

May I just moan that you always make me feel inadequate and lazy! lol.
I must force myself to find the time to update my blog, including pictures!
My Sweetcorn look like poor relations of your ones, similar size but battered!

keewee said...

All your hard work will pay off.

Maureen said...

Ali you have worn me out just reading your post. I thought I was an allotment workaholic, but I think you take the crown.
You remind me of myself with all the extra plants you grow to give away! it's a great feeling to share isn't it.

mangocheeks said...

Such a grest feeling when you know all your hard work will reward you well with delicious fruit and vegetables, plus the plot looks rather good too!

Kella said...

Hi I just read your entire blog, its great will be following your progress. I'm a backyard gardener and growing veges is a great passion of mine. I'm on numerous lotty waiting list so hopefully I'll be lucky like you and get one too one day.

Wishing you a great season.