Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Forgot what happened last year - maybe it's here!!
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stewpot
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Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by stewpot »

Hi There

This is my first post so I would dive straight in. At the start I will do a bit of backtracking to set the scene as it were.

We have been looking for an allorment for a while. We applied locally (Although outside area kids go to school there) were denied and after a bloodless coup on the allotment committee were given one. They new committee decided better to let them than be too fussy.

October 2012
This is the one we picked with a council shed. Minimal costs all round to rent allotment and shed.

Shed is in good condition. The plot has been worked in places. Got a fennel jungle nearest the shed and couch grass, dandelions, thistles and briars elsewhere. It's about 100ft long and 13ft wide has raspberries and rhubarb already growing.

Top End
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Shed & part of Fennel Jungle:
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Raspberries are in there somewhere:
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Wildlife On First day:
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More to follow as I catch up into this year.

Stewart
"Remember as you go through life that a rich man is just a poor man with an incredible amount of money" - Smith & Jones
Stewpots DTL Allotment Diary 2013
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MissEllie
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by MissEllie »

)wav( hi Stewart and welcome to the Lane.
Your allotment looks great, good luck with all your plans and looking forward to seeing how it progresses in your diary. )t'
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billnorfolk
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by billnorfolk »

Hello there Stewart a very warm welcome to the lane ,most had simular tasks as yours before the growing realy starts,its hard work but well worth the hard work in the end .Good luck ,look forward to your progress reports )t'
A leek in the hand,is worth 2 in the roof.

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HappyBob
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by HappyBob »

Hi and welcome to the lane Stewart. Your allotment looks great and cant wait to read your dairy as to how it progresses into your little haven... )t'
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LittleBrownFrog
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

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Welcome to the Lane :-D
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mrs boodles
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

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Hi Stewart, welcome to forum. Hope you get on ok with your allotment and good luck. Looking forward to reading your diary.
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by lancashire lass »

Hi Stewart & welcome )wav( That looks like a promising plot with a lot of potential, and such a nice shed too (sigh - mine is falling apart LOL) I bet digging up that fennel had a heavenly scent. Good luck for 2013 )t'
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

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Thank you for the warm welcome everybody. Been reading the forum for a good week or more and loved what I saw so joined.

Okay let's try and get this uptodate. The day after we got it the whole family made our first attack to try and get things done before the winter:

First of all attacking the side of the shed so we would have somewhere to sit and eat whilst down there. There was a rotten old pallet there which had been grown through be couch grass and buttercups. The weed control fabric was ancient to had to go as well. My daughter helped me weed it cut open cheap bin bags and cover with some old slate and a bit of gravel we had:

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First forays into digging it. A lot of the fennel removed and first forkfuls weeded courtesy of my good lady wife. The good thing is the soil is wonderful.
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The small open cast mine scrape in front of the main dug bit is the work of the little bee running down the path. He loves digging and going to the allotment :-D
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I rescued the rhubarb got rid of the rotten leaves before winter and edged it with boards. They look a bit pathetic at the moment and worried a little at this point as the crowns looked a bit gooey. But big crowns which should be good for splitting end of next season. No idea of variety.
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Our first allotment lunch. Sunny but chilly
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Next update will bring us into 2013 hurray!
Last edited by stewpot on 09 May 2013, 09:37, edited 1 time in total.
"Remember as you go through life that a rich man is just a poor man with an incredible amount of money" - Smith & Jones
Stewpots DTL Allotment Diary 2013
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stewpot
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by stewpot »

lancashire lass wrote:Hi Stewart & welcome )wav( That looks like a promising plot with a lot of potential, and such a nice shed too (sigh - mine is falling apart LOL) I bet digging up that fennel had a heavenly scent. Good luck for 2013 )t'


Did smell nice but was wary of spreading more seeds as the jungle was self seeded from on big plant which went. The shed was a real bonus. Clean and sturdy and a carpet inside which will would probably go as they get damp and smelly lol.
"Remember as you go through life that a rich man is just a poor man with an incredible amount of money" - Smith & Jones
Stewpots DTL Allotment Diary 2013
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

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Onwards into 2013. Well not a lot happened with the rest of 2012. With school stuff, Christmas and weather the weekends were no good for working on the allotment. My better half did try putting in some over wintering pea seed but I was rather dubious if they would do any good with the temperatures and wet we were having.

January/February and march weren't much better as you know. Rain, frost and snow!

So that brings us into April. Now by the time we had finished in October we had dug almost up to the rhubarb - about 12 feet. The first 2013 visit was 5th April 2013

This was an interesting visit. We seem to have had a phantom strimmer and burner! I knew the committee had been tidying vacant plots by ploughing them to encourage someone to take them. But it appears someone got a bee in their bonnet about the weeds left on ours we hadn't got to (We have some serious allotmenters on the next 3 plots to ours). In itself not too bad as did reduce the height of the weeds, but I would have appreciated the courtesy of being told or asked. The fire was the naughty bit as at thebottom was plastic and nails which I wasn't happy about with children around. Well never mind told committee chairman who we know from kids school and cracked on

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Well luckily where I work there are always loads of pallets so I had been breaking up a few. I was going to use them to start on the compost bin, but with the way the weather had flatten what we had dug we decided to build some raised beds just to get some stuff growing. here is my first effort 1.2m x 1.0m as standard pallet sized. Posts in corners are from recycled wood merchant down here. Painted/stained them so we can get extra years and they look nice.

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"Remember as you go through life that a rich man is just a poor man with an incredible amount of money" - Smith & Jones
Stewpots DTL Allotment Diary 2013
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by jannie »

Hi Stewart )wav( .. and welcome to The Lane. :-D

You have a wonderful family pastime ahead of you .. looking forward to reading all about it in your diary. )t'
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

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28th April 2013
Well we're getting there. Amazingly we have really nice weather. Looks like a full allotment weekend bar dancing lesson ferrying around. So hoping to get a load done.

One thing very pleased with is the rhubarb. By this time we have already had two crumble's from it and still more to come. Best on the allotment as well so chuffed as didn't plant it and didn't have to do much:

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We have had to re-dig some of the stuff from last year as it had been compacted by the weather. Time to plant some more peas in. This year is just about prepping tidying and growing as we are about a month behind. Next year will have more of a plan.

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As you can see I have added a second raised bed and we have already planted the first with mixed lettuce, beat leaf, spring onions and beetroot. Cheap £1 cloche from Wilko over part of it. Second raised bed kids helped me plant on the Sunday with carrots (Family staple and favourite), parsnips and more spring onions.

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I started digging back from other side of the rhubarb towards the raspberry which we tidied up last year. I am not forking out the weeds just double digging and taking out some couch grass roots, dandelions and thistles. We want to get this bit done quiker and plant it out with spuds. Got 10 earlies and 24 main crop from local nursery for just £1.75.

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Got 24 main and 10 earlies in by end of the weekend.

Well after making so much progress we really had the bug, especially as some lettuce in the first raised bed was coming through. So I soaked some seeds overnight and did a little planting when we finished on Sunday.

Also daughter finally got her little patch going. Marigolds planted, broage in, fence up and waiting to get an old bowl to put a stone in for a wildlife pool
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Broad beans, dwarf french beans, runner beans, cabbage, peas and sprouts. As well as my late entry into the family sunflower contest.

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"Remember as you go through life that a rich man is just a poor man with an incredible amount of money" - Smith & Jones
Stewpots DTL Allotment Diary 2013
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by mrs boodles »

Stewart, I`m worn out just reading about all the work you have put in {rofwl} love your raised beds and your allotment looks as though it is coming on leaps and bounds. I used to have allotments but gave them up for various reasons, I had dedicated growers either side of me and they were really quite disdainful of anything I did. not a particularly friendy allotment site and were`nt allowed sheds etc.
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stewpot
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

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mrs boodles wrote:Stewart, I`m worn out just reading about all the work you have put in {rofwl} love your raised beds and your allotment looks as though it is coming on leaps and bounds. I used to have allotments but gave them up for various reasons, I had dedicated growers either side of me and they were really quite disdainful of anything I did. not a particularly friendy allotment site and were`nt allowed sheds etc.


Loved making the raised beds I have to say Mrs B. Got the pallet bug now lol. Even got a new toy below. Almost killed me and my back first weekend in April (6'7" so long bend down). But now as go on I recover much quicker even for 42. Swear I will have sghoulders like a swimmer by the time I have done the whole 100ft.

You can't have an allotment without a shed!

The neighbours one side the pros as it were are okay. We have spoken but you get the impression they look down the nose slightly at out slow progress. We shall see. I might be being paraniod. Other side is someone we know from daughter's school as their daughter friends with ours.
"Remember as you go through life that a rich man is just a poor man with an incredible amount of money" - Smith & Jones
Stewpots DTL Allotment Diary 2013
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MissEllie
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Re: Stewart's Allotment Diary 2013

Post by MissEllie »

Wow Stewart, it's looking great )t'
I wouldn't worry about allotment neighbours, there's always folk in life who like to feel superior - luckily we know that all members of Down the Lane ARE superior )w(
The talent for being happy is appreciating and liking what you have, instead of what you don't have
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