Monday, 31 December 2012

First day back...

Plot 376

2012, wow not a bad year. 2013, hopefully a lot better. Hopefully, also a lot less rain and more sunshine.
Really looking forward to this year, got some good seeds and unusual seeds, which I am still eager to embark and start sowing. Hopefully, they will grow for me!
As I like to look after the pensioners local in my area, I'm praying to give them some bizarre veg soon and see their facial expressions when they behold yellow courgettes and bright lights of chard.

There's lots of nice reasons for me to grow my own crops; such as the different tastes, the differences in preparation and methods, the joy of helping people and how strange, I really do enjoy the hard work I put into it all! These below, are just a few of what is to come halfway through and to the end of this year arrived..

Their they are above, lay on the carpet by the way, not grass! :)

I'm ready for the New Year now, bring it on.

Old sticks and branches...

Plot 376

Along the lanes of the allotment, sticks and branches are around. I use these to keep the wood pigeons or any other animals off my crops. This works extremely well and adds a nice woodland theme to my plot.

With the thicker branches this year, I have made a runner bean frame, which I am going to grow runner beans themselves one side and the other half of sweet peas. I think this will look very nice, the colourful plants winding up the sticks. Check out my runner bean frame out for my crops...


There it is above. However, not only do I get sticks and branches from the allotment, but from Farndon and other forest like places I visit to. This can be a little tricky...

Around this area, there is plenty of sticks and logs for my burner also. This all comes in handy like recycling. After collecting, I must say, me and my trustworthy defender do need to get a shower back at home...

Before my next blog, would just like to wish all my friends and readers a happy New Year, best wishes for more to come.

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Using scrap materials (part 5)...

Plot 376

My personal security

Got little visitors lately, the odd wood pigeon and a few magpies decided to attack my brassicas. Maybe they needed a little friend to talk to? So I made a scarecrow. This plastic buddy has hopefully scared them well away for a while. A plastic plant pot for a face, a yellow raincoat, tall and powerful! :)

Meet my allotment buddy Rob (part 4)...

Plot 376

When I joined the allotments, after about two weeks of working into it, a young man approached me with his brother and requested how to get an allotment. It was very hard to tell whether this man was really interested in getting an allotment at this time, nevertheless I told him how to go about it, giving him the appropriate address and phone numbers for the council. I can honestly say, I am glad that he did get one, I have made a really good friend :)
Rob is a person who will really help you out without a shadow of the doubt and puts others first. He has a lovely partner, very much like himself. It is great to know Rob and Hayley, I also speak for my family when I say this. My two daughters also think a lot of them and our get togethers are great!
One highlight, not long ago Rob was the first to drive my truck, as he calls it, which I am happy to have given that fun experience. I do take great pleasure in helping Rob when he needs it, because I know when I need help and can turn to him, he is more than likely to oblige.

Rob's allotment above, near the beginning. 

And above here, my mate Rob, looking after his chickens on a frosty morning!

The sowing of the seeds (part 3)...

Plot 376

Over the last couple days, myself and Bob decided to start sowing some seeds; giant leeks, hot peppers, with red and savoy cabbage and broad beans already planted. Can't wait to get these into the ground, because I want them to grow!
Giving my daughter Lauryn some space on my plot next year, she can hopefully grow some beautiful dahlias or chrysanthemum rainbow, just add some lovely colour to the plot besides from green!
I had got some unusual vegetable seeds called 'Funky Veg Kit' at Christmas, this consists of stripy tomatoes and purple carrots, etc...I have also purchased various vegetable mammoth seeds from Rob's granddad,  I am eager to start planting them as well!





The making of my compost (part 2)...

Plot 376

Making my compost earlier this year, I started with tonne sacks of brown, rotted leaves from Farndon woods, horse manure from free cycle, vegetable scraps, fruit scraps and teabags, plus some good manure and grass cuttings donated from my good mate Rob. This is the compost I'll be using for the following season next year and I am hoping I shall have good results from it!


My compost above and as you can see below, Rob's compost and what a fantastic job he's made.

The preparation, before the growing season (part 1)...

Plot 376

Over the last few days, I have been very busy preparing the ground for my potatoes, this includes digging over the soil and spreading manure into the ground. Hopefully in February, I will be preparing it for planting the potatoes! I have also had some help from my good mate Rob!

Saturday, 29 December 2012

The start of my allotment journey...

Plot 376

When I received my allotment, I immediately started work as I was so excited. The picture below is a photo of another allotment, very much of what mine was like at the beginning.

I worked very hard to get my plot, which was like that but worse above, to what it is now.
The picture below is my Mum's plot 30 years on. Many memories I can recall, its nice being close to it.

Everything I used was recycled. The first job I was to do was to build a fence around the plot, to prevent people using my allotment as a car park and dumping ground! I then had to clear the allotment with petrol cutters and trimmers, etc and then I took all the green waste and general waste to the local recycling depot. This however was a big task in itself! The next big step was to make the raised beds using scaffold planks and when the beds were made, this then took me 26 tonnes of soil and approximately 3 tonnes of manure to fill them. After that, I got some Victorian doors from a friend. This made a lovely greenhouse, with herringbone stone block floor!
Finally after 4 weeks of hard work, became the growing season! I was straight to the garden centre to get onion and potato sets. Quite surprisingly, they grew, even with it being my first time!

Most of the other crops I also chose this season, was runner beans, cabbages, artichokes, salad like leaves and salad crops. I also have a lot of fruit, fruit trees and bushes, canes, etc...growing.
I spent the whole season at my allotment, not missing many days. I enjoyed keeping the woodland theme nice and weed free. This Winter, I've spent a lot of time organizing and preparing for the coming season ahead. The only thing I will miss, is the crackling log burner, which I recycled from an old gas bottle, keeping me warm in my shed. I have also met some wonderful people, who also share the same interests as myself! In particular, Rob, who is very helpful. I enjoy going round to his plot, drinking coffee and having a chat. For a young man, he knows a lot about gardening and growing crops. I think he teaches me sometimes!
I have also joined the Allotment Society Committee, which I am most pleased about.

Please take time in reading my upcoming entries!
Many thanks,