Saturday, 18 April 2009

Plotting Dreams

Gosh it's all go here at the moment. Spring is racing along and on the way we're gathering up new and exciting family things to do. And the most exciting came in a phone call on Tuesday afternoon.


"Hello there Mrs W. Are you still interested in taking a village allotment?"

Oh my word! When B popped a letter through the door of the lady who manages the allotments last summer I was prepared to wait a couple of years before a plot came up, not just a few months. We knew that there were a few people on the waiting list so I was quite happy to keep growing a few things on the patio and wait until the boy were a bit bigger and we perhaps had a little more time.

But luckily for us a plot was given up a few weeks ago and because we'd put in a request in writing we automatically went to the top of the list. So on Wednesday we popped up the road (the allotments are a perfect 5 minute walk up the hill), handed over our annual rent (£16!!) and had a look at what we're taking on).



(Our plot!)
Hmmmmm, this is the worrying bit isn't it. What on earth are we going to do with this? Panic sets in and I had to sit down for a few minutes and have a proper think. But there's an awful lot of inspiration here, some lovely looking plots and there have been veg patch plans in my head for years. We grew up next door to a wonderful old lady who had a marvellous orchard, (complete with a Victorian greenhouse), which she very kindly let my parents have the run of.

Mum and Dad grew everything under the sun and when we moved, after she'd passed away, my grandad set up a veg patch at our new house. We've grown the odd thing ourselves since we got married; dug up the lawn at our first cottage to grown a few potatoes (even though it was too shady and north facing) and at this house the tomatoes were doing wonderfully last year until that wet muggy August weather did for them and we were hit by blight.

The village allotments are on our walk to school and all year we monitor what's growing, when the bean poles come up and down, who's sunflowers are tallest etc. To have or own little patch is a dream come true.

There are raised beds here under the weeds that need a little repair and a fair few weeds but on the whole it's not in too bad a shape. For the last year not all that much was grown here but apparently a retired lady had a super allotment here until really recently and the old chaps I met up there reckon its a good plot to have. We're not allowed any sheds or permanent structures but the water baths are filled up by a volunteer and there are houses all around and always someone keeping an eye on them.
We're really looking forward to making our mark on it and giving the boys a chance to really mess about in the soil and grow a few things of their own. I need to sit on my hands a bit though, reign in the excitement and focus on getting a little bit done at a time so plans for this summer include a few main crop potatoes, parsnips, squashes, a few onions and a pumpkin has been demanded already.
And I've spied a raised bed at the back which would be just the perfect cut flower patch - I see dozens and dozens of colourful dahlias - but don't tell Woody!

32 comments:

dottycookie said...

How exciting! We took on a ramshackle plot this year too and our plans sound very similar to yours!

The weather forecast here is good till the middle of next week so we're off up there this morning ...

Leisa said...

Fantastic to hear your name came to the top of the list so quickly. I am sure you will all have a wonderful time growing your own food and of course some flowers too!

Tabiboo said...

Oh wow - that's fantastic!

We have a part share with a friend (first time for us as well this year) as the waiting lists are lengthy.

Your plot looks fab, I can't wait to see what you grow.

take care,

Nina x

T said...

How wonderful and exciting! I've done this before and loved growing my own veggies. Can't wait to see what you decide to plant.

funkymonkey said...

How exciting. It will be lovely to see how your plot develops and all the wonderful things you will grow.

tracey

hip chick said...

Oh how pretty and promising it all looks. I've always wanted to do something like that. Please kee us updated with results and photo's. I do love to see a garden grow.

Diane said...

I am SOOOOOO envious!!

sue15cat said...

Oh, well done on getting an allotment SO quickly, I've known people wait years. Already looking forward to following your allotment progress on your blog.

Sue xx

Brenda said...

I have fallen in love with your blog! I found it a few days ago and keep coming back to it over and over. Don't think I've left a comment yet. But you're going on my bloglist for sure! I'm a gardener and will give you all the virtual help from Texas that I can!
Brenda

Pink Feather Paradise said...

I have just bought some peas and I will be getting my beans... I have space to grow a bit more but not he time unfortunately, Mr P's dad has been taken ill and is in hospital and they have a back garden that is practically all veg patch, I think I may be helping with that this year... plus my mums garden needs a complete redesign as she is unable to cope with it any more so I will be building raised beds and gravelling areas to make wider paths... getting old is awful and parents and parents in law are really struggling to accept their limitations...

your plot looks fantastic... go steady and you'll be fine!

x Alex

Lucy@Corset Laced Mannequins said...

How exciting for you! We've had an allotment for about 5 years now and it looks better every year. My advice....dig/weed small bits and have your plants ready for immediate planting. And hoe, hoe hoe!!! I can hoe for hours!! Good luck, Lucyxx

Cathy said...

Congratulations!! I have had so much pleasure out of mine, and ours looked worse than yours by quite some way when we first got it, but we still managed a good crop in our first year. It has been the best £26 a year we've ever spent! Good luck with the digging.
Cathy X

Sheila said...

And I'm watching from Indiana! I stumbled on to your blog recently & also love it.

We are having a beautiful weekend but supposed to be cold by Monday. Our "frost free" day here is around May 8th so we usually don't plant much before then. But I definitely have Spring Fever!

(Another reason I'm interested...I have an English sister-in-law & am fascinated with our similarities in family life & culture.

Happy hoeing!

French Knots said...

What great news! My children are so enthusiastic about our plot, they like digging and finding bits of old pottery'just like Time Team Mummy!'
I've used some old carpet from Freecycle to help in my battle with the weeds.

Karen said...

Hi Steph, Such good news about your allotment. I expect the other plot holders will have plenty of advice to get you started and probably some free plants. Its lovely to get your boys started so young. My two sons love growing veg in our garden and eating the results! If you look at Cornwallcam.co.uk there are some lovely pictures of Port Issac from 17 April. Karenx

Bobo Bun said...

All new exciting things for you. Fantastic it came up so quickly. Now you'll have to bake as you'll need something to munch while you're digging. I thought the cakes looked great as iced buns are my favourites.

Lisa x

Melanie said...

We are lucky enough to have a huge back garden, and this past week my husband and I have spent digging a 10ft x 20ft patch over to make in to our kitchen garden, we have planted onions, cabbage, beetroot, radish and spring onions so far, but are propagating pumpkins, tomatoes, chillis, broad beans and lemon balm to add to it. We are going to dig a seperate potatoe bed also. I can not wait to start harvesting our own veg, we will be planting more, and also some fruit tree's, apple, pear and lemon. I am so excited to eat the fruit of our labour!
Love your blog.
Take care
Melanie.

http://melaniegalloway.info/

The Curious Cat said...

How exciting! I would love an allotment! You will have to document some of the things you grow as I'm sure people will be interested - like me!!! I'm fairly new to the blogging world but I'm getting tons of inspiration from your blog and others! How long have you been doing this? It is a great hobby isn't it?

serendipitylovesnewyork said...

That a really good size plot you have, I imagine it will be lots of fun growing your own, the boys will love it! Claire xx

pigeon pease said...

Oh you'll have fun, hard work but fun, we've had ours for awhile now and when we first had ours it looked just like yours does, but it won't take long to get it looking great....keep us posted.

lynn xx

gingerwine said...

I expect you will be growing lovely things very soon!

Sam xx

Sew Recycled said...

Very exciting!
We have an allotment wich wa scompletely overgrown, its taken some time to get it weed free but yours looks like a super plot!
Perfect time to get loads in, enjoy!
Emx

Jeanne said...

You are really lucky to get one so quickly! I have been on my local waiting list for over a year now. In the meantime a very kind friend offered to let me have a little patch in her less modest garden! I grow veggies that I don't have room for in my small cottage garden, which is mostly given over to flowers and a small salad bed and herbs in pots.

Since discovering your blog I'm an avid fan and after much deliberating have just started my own blog. Please stop by! I love gardening too and I look forward to following your allotment endeavours ...

Lynne said...

Looks great.
It will be interesting to see how it develops.

Mara said...

Hello :)

Well done on getting an allotment so quickly! We grow a little in the garden and are hoping to do a bit more this year - time passes so quickly though! :)

Pipany said...

Oh I am so excited for you Steph. You'll love it and it's such a good time of year to get going on one too. Looking forward to lots of pics xx

claire said...

How fabulous!!
Teeny bit green with envy although I know I have no time to even apply for an alottment lol!!
I am sure your boys will have a great time helping :)

periwinkle said...

wow, lucky lucky you .... me and hub were talking about getting an allotment - we have at least a 3yr wait -- can't wait to see what you do with it :-)
lisa x

Sue at Dollytub Cottage said...

I love your pics! I'd love an allotment, but I have enough trouble making my garden behave! SueX

Melanie said...

I hope you dont mind, but I've added your blog onto my blogroll on my site.

Take Care.

Garden Girl said...

oh congratulations Steph, I remember a very similiar phone call a few years ago! And oh, the excitement!!!
Have lots of fun
x

Lucy said...

Very exciting! You will have so much fun. Good for you. Enjoy! Lucy x