Thursday, October 23, 2008

My New Allotment!

Yes I know I probably need my head tested but this allotment business is addictive!

Plot 26A, below mine, was originally worked for many years by the man I took mine over from. It was let in 2007 to a man I saw only twice. He didn’t return and the weeds went to seed.

I put my name on the waiting list for it, and it was offered to me last autumn when I was heavily pregnant and in no shape to dig, so it was let to a friendly woman with 4 children. She did a sterling job at tackling the weeds and planting crops, but sadly she didn’t return for her beans, garlic or onions and the bindweed took over once more. With 4 children I can understand the demands on her time- and I’ve just got one!

So, here I am the new tenant of 5 rods of plot 26A, a homemade glasshouse (of such) and a SHED! It may only be the size of a WC cubicle but it’s still my own shed.

It was very exciting to cut off the rusting padlock and discover what was inside. It was just as well I don’t mind spiders & cobwebs, as the contents were a little disappointing. Most of it is junk and will go to the tip but I can use the bubble wrap on the green house at home, the dustbin incinerator and the long handled weed scratchers that look like two large chicken’s feet!
(Mary, if you want any of this back, just leave me a message below)

I have great enthusiasm for my new land, but my time is limited and my energy low, but I won’t let that stop me. I can drift peacefully off to sleep at night imagining it without a weed in sight, with rich crumbly soil and rows of healthy crops, bountiful with harvest and a rosy cheeked toddler caked in mud, grinning from ear to ear!

A girl can dream can’t she?

Plot 26- Not much growing except Brussels spouts, celeriac & red cabbage. I'm still catching up on the weeding and trying to get my late spuds up before the slugs eat them all. The leeks seem to be doing well

And for all the Baby Digger followers across the globe, some recent photos of our Cheeky Chappy on holiday in Slovenia last week with his cousins.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Timeless day.

By this I mean that time didn't matter today as I was completely free of parental responsibility and had no need to clockwatch.

With HWDD and BD out visiting grandparents, I escaped to the plot for four and a half hours straight! I will probably suffer for it tomorrow, but am pleased with how much I managed to do.

The brassica bed has 7x sprouts, 3x red cabbage, 3x celeriac and 2 broccoli, mulched and netted.

There are 20 broad beans (The Sutton) next to the rhubarb which were buzzing with bees.

And 130 leeks! 70x Mussleburgh (sown 01.08) and 50 Pandora (sown 4.08) I hope that DB has no ill effects from eating leaks, once we start weaning!

My men arrived home safely laden with runner beans from Grandad's garden- which are are definite hit with BD! (22 weeks)

Yesterday we had a very damp trip to Wakehurst Place and the Millennium Seed Bank before celebrating auntie Sharon’s xx birthday with the rest of the family.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Important stuff....

Does it really matter if the weeds take over or the slugs eat the beans? Sometimes you just have to sit back and say- never mind, it can wait. The most important things in my life don’t need weeding, but do need lots of loving tender care and regular feeding!

I’m proud to say that HWDD harvested the garlic last week and the 15 bulbs are drying in the greenhouse.
There are about 6 cranberries ripening for the first time this year. Probably not enough to go with our Christmas turkey though.

Another shot of the garden a few days ago.
And another of Baby Digger, who’s now transplanted from his crib to a cot in his own room and is starting to explore the garden.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Time Management...

What little spare time I have has to be used very wisely and divvied up between what needs to be done and what I’d like to do; in the house, in the garden and on the plot, while making sure I get enough sleep!

The weeds have not made any allowances for the fact that I’ve just had a baby. One fellow plot holder actually complemented on how lush they were, asking what crop it was that I was growing!

This prompted me to start pulling them out and have so far cleared 2 beds ready for the leeks and brasicas. I can’t bear to look at the other 6 that also need clearing, but at least I managed to clear and cover some last year in order to grow:

Spuds: Valour & Sarpo Mira planted by HWDD while back- but I can’t remember the exact date (never mind- he calls it ‘Mum-neisia’)

Onions: Red Barron & white- can’t remember & can’t be bothered to go & unlock the shed to find out! (started in trays) Garlic: Red & white from Kings
A rainbow of soft fruit: Strawberries, Black & Red Currants, Blackberries, Blue berries and some promising flowers on the cranberries for the first time.

My mum & Dad visited today and we took a stroll over to the plot, picked some strawberries & rhubarb. The pram is a great help in carrying the produce home. (underneath- Baby Digger is not sharing with produce (yet!))

The parting shot is of the garden last week, in rough comparison to what it was like 6 years ago when we moved in.

PS: One last photo of Baby Digger at 10 weeks old - sorry I couldn't resist!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Our Precious Seedling.....

Our precious seedling was ‘re-potted’ on Saturday 8th March at 2.11pm and weighed in at a respectable 7lb 2oz.

He arrived through the ‘emergency escape hatch’ so I won’t be planting my own spuds this year! We plan to introduce ‘Baby Digger’ to the allotment later on today.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


I may be blooming (and waiting!) but my garden and plot are also 'Springing' into life with all this sunny weather.

We're still eating the Brussels Sprouts (do they count as 'flowers'?) and the white sprouting broccoli, but will leave the garden blooms alone, as they won't be as palatable!

The Clematis armandi will need some attentionto tie in the new growth before the next high wind.

I was quite impressed with the 3 headed narcissus!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Froggie Luvin!

As I went to hang out the washing today, I disturbed, what looked like, a considerable number of frogs in the pond! The water was bubbling with ‘activity’ although these two hadn’t yet made it into the water!

The first of the spawn was laid a week a go on Valentines Day (same time as in 2007), so it’s looking hopeful for lots of tadpoles again this year!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Winter Garden

We've had a weekend break away, the last before 'Baby Digger' arrives, with a friend in Bedfordshire. Knowing how much I like gardening and being rather 'physically challenged' with a huge bump, the National Trust Anglesea Abbey was a great choice for somewhere to visit on a cold, crisp, sunny winters day.

It featured on a gardening programme recently, where they were washing the algae from the silver birch trees! It did look stunning!

Only four weeks to go until our precious seedling is due. HWDD is rather apprehensive that it will be born under the gooseberry bush on the allotment!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Red sky in morning....

Red sky in morning: Shepherd’s warning, as the old saying goes, which turned out to be true today.
The scarlet streaked sunrise (captured here at about 8am!) was the only thing to brighten the day’s grey sky and wind stirred waves. (Taken from the window at work)

To combat the winter blues (other wise known as Seasonal Defective Disorder or SAD) every morning I use my Go-lite to trick my brain into thinking it’s summer, and into producing serotonin to keep me happy! This is my third winter of light therapy and I wouldn’t be without it!
Something else that banished the winter blues is the sight of the first blooms on the camelia in the garden.