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Sunday, 23 June 2013

Allotment Adventures


My family and I love fresh homegrown produce.  We're growing as much as we can in our small back garden, mostly in containers and a couple of huge growbags which are like canvas raised beds.  When a friend asked if anyone was willing to share her allotment I jumped at the chance.  The thought of having much more room to grow fresh produce was very exciting.

I'm not sure if we are overenthusiastic or slightly mad but not only are we sharing an allotment with another family, we're looking after the school allotment too.  The teacher who looks after the allotment and organises gardening club is retiring so I offered our services to keep it tended over the summer and beyond.  It means there's lots of gardening and growing to be done and hopefully lots of fresh produce to eat.

Gardening is great exercise and the perfect excuse to get out in the fresh air, even dodging heavy showers like we were today didn't dampen out spirits.  There's nothing like eating something you have grown yourself, there is a real sense of achievement, not to mention freshly harvested produce tastes much better than the supermarket purchased variety.

This morning we left home at 10am and spent just over 3.5 hours at the allotments.  All the beds we had diligently weeded previously but not planted anything in had weeded over with the warm and wet weather.  I almost cried at the fact our hard work last time had been lost.  

However, with determined spirits we rolled up our sleeves and weeded all beds once again, turned over the soil and broke up any large clumps to prepare the beds for planting.  We then planted out beans, peas, kale, rainbow chard, courgettes, tomatoes and a dozen lettuces.  We weeded, turned over and planted out a bed at the school allotment too. 

Once everything had been planted it was all given a good thorough water, each of us carrying a 10L watering can back and forth from the water trough.  There are strictly no hosepipes allowed on the allotment so watering is tiring and time consuming.  It does however force you to conserve water and consider whether it is worth watering quite so much if a decent heavy shower is expected.  

We staggered home with 3kg of freshly harvested rhubarb, exhausted but proud of our achievements.

1 comment:

  1. It feels wonderful, doesn't it? I'm so pleased you're persevering with your allotment (and taking more on too!). Our old allotment plot couldn't have a hosepipe and we spent many an afternoon going backwards and forwards with watering cans but it made those harvests all the more sweet.

    Looking forward to reading more of your adventures.

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