Monthly Archives: June 2016

Gardening and conversing on the 11/06

This is the best time of year to be in the garden. Warmth from the sun, gentle breeze, plants largely look after themselves. This seasons changing weather makes the weeds happy as well and we get a regular work out on the weeds.

We had a good go at the tool storage and like the way it is going to keep them organised plus Fiona will be very pleased with the upcoming potting table next to it.

 

Sara has brought us a tool from Spain made from copper which is said to keep away slugs and a cross between a 3-pronged cultivator and a hoe and helped our brassicas by cutting down the tops of the German Alpine Spinach to make it more bushy and not to crowd out the other saplings and applied some used ground coffee around the plants to feed them.

Jason visited us for the first time and cracked on with cutting the grass which enjoys the rain and sun and needs to be seen to each time we are there. The plot looks more presentable thanks to the teams persistence.

It was great to observe the interactions on the plot, in a space 15m by 9m people can find a quiet space for themselves tending to the plants and can also join together in work and conversations flow.

A perk of the day was meeting Dan from Essex Bees tending to his cuties. He was generous and we tried fresh honey and wax straight from the comb. Delicious.

We finished off with a lunch with a rise salad followed by fruit and so the day came to an end.

Feedback from Jason:

I am quite nervous and feel a little uncomfortable when meeting new people, but everyone one was very nice and friendly which helped a lot. It was also nice to get my hands into the soil, and see a modest result for my efforts. The tool room looked great, and the food was very nice too. Looking forward to doing it again soon. Thanks

Next plot day will be on the 26/06 Sunday 10-14 and looking forward to seeing you for a cup of tea or a dig depending on what you feel you need.

Kamil

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Short session on the plot 04/06/2016

A quick trip to the plot to meet with a gardening company. We are trying to find ways to speed up work on the family plot which requires heavy digging so getting quotes is one option.

We had a good chat and will stay in touch with them as the garden green waste can feed out compost bins.

Broad beans are in competition with the sunflowers and reaching dazzling heights. Mints love being placed under water butt tap and having the occasional splatter of water.

If you need to add some fertility to your garden used coffee grounds are one option. Below are a few places you can stock up, ask nicely, keep it clean.

1. Utopia cafe
2. Nosh in Forum library, Sara advised she will put the coffee grounds in the fridge for us daily, just ask for them
3. McDonald’s at Garons roundabout, if the young person at the till does not know what you are asking about ask team leader. Very forthcoming and can get loads.
4. Waitrose, near Garons, they put it in the tin bin right of main entrance, bring a bag
5.Costa in hospital, just ask

So if you happen to be there or near just ask and you will be rewarded:)

Late spring bank holiday workday Sunday 29/05/16

A warm day with gentle breezes, birds singing their hearts out and vegetation getting into full swing the broad beans are nearly 6ft and just coming into flower, see below.  A great welcoming to last Sundays Community allotment work day.

Sarah, one of our green party candidates, holistic therapy expert, business owner and entrepreneur joined us for her first visit to the plot.  Sarah stuck straight in with clearing one the raised beds ready for planting the brassicas.

Leaving in some self seeded purple orrack (alpine spinach) gives a great visual contrast to the Cauliflowers, cabbages and brussels.  The purple orrack may help confuse the cabbage white butterfly, it’s war this year what with the netting too (when it finally gets fitted) The orrack  always adds a twist to salad.

 

Fiona set to greenhouse duties, feeding and watering the eager seedlings begging to be planted out.  I attended to some  grass cutting or to reframe that, some compost creation.  Actually a bit of mowing is quite therapeutic.  Kamil’s family growing family paid a visit and little Nella took charge of monitoring the water-butt dispensing.

A steady flow of visitors through the day.  Mark who works with Scope on various growing projects,  kindly brought some  seeds for us to grow.  We look forward to trialing the ‘Super french bean’ which apparently is a super climber and heavy cropper and some summer and winter squashes,  which we plan to grow up over the shed. Mark also showed us some nifty flip cards which tell you all about each veg or fruit and how where to grow them.  Available free from the Organic seed company.  It was a pleasure to welcome Mark with wife Tilly and baby daughter Mia,  yes that’s Mark number 2 today!  They said they enjoyed the plot tour and will be back to get involved soon.

Our two year old grape vine is excitingly sporting tiny grape bunches, can’t wait to see these grow to bunches of grapes,  Transition wine? watch this space.

 

With all the exciting goings on we almost forgot about a lunch break, good job we remembered, with Fiona’s herby focaccia bread and Alicja’s humus with roasted veg followed by a piece of my not so healthy but tasty(if I do say so, and I do!) carrot cake.

Feeling slightly guilty after all that indulgence we got on with a few more jobs on the list,  I continued with the butterfly netting for the cabbages, while the girls saw to some weeding and tidying on the soft fruit patch, while Kamil and kean helper Mark attacked laying weed suppressing membrane over the new family plot with gusto. The plan is this should stop the grass and make it easier to dig over. for when we find a willing work force to help in this eppic task!  Another wonderful day down on the plot, which now in it’s fourth year is starting to show character, grape vine, fruit trees, berry bushes and a productive Rhubarb patch.  The yields of our hard work are beginning to appear, come down and have a cup of tea and take a few plant / fruit cuttings with you.  See you next time.  Dunc