I made it down my allotment today – hurrah!
Oh dear – spring has really gotten underway. And how do I know this? Because of the WEEDS! So many of them. Everywhere!
All I could do was to get my trusty hoe and start hacking and then raking. I managed to make a lot of head way in a small amount of time. I decided I wouldn’t do more than a couple of hours, otherwise I would be really sore and stiff tomorrow.
I got my allotment last May and I really didn’t (and don’t) want to spend a lot of money – making it look all ordered and neat. A lot of my neighbours down there seem to have spent a fortune in wood for making boxes, which is great – I love raised beds, they are so neat and tidy, but expensive to make. For me that defeats the object of allotments!
I was really pleased as I moved away all of the weeds – the soil underneath was really rich and well dug. All of the time I spent last summer digging over the disused and rock hard land filled with rubbish and lots of stones was worth it. I was lucky enough to get my hands on some extremely well-rotted horse manure which I dug in last year and it has paid off with some fertile looking soil this year.
I have used some old scaffolding planks to start to put some structure to my beds, I used broken up bits of pallet last year, which looked messy, took HOURS to break up and the soil pushed them back up again.
Using some old logs and a trough of some description I have started to create a wildlife sanctuary – all of the other allotments are quite sterile and totally focused on food production, so I am going to have a log pile, small pond and lots of flowers which are good for bees and other beneficial insects. I also plan to grow some flowers to fulfill my love of fresh-cut flowers in the house. This way I don’t need to worry about ‘flower miles’!
In an endeavour to add some extra oompf to my lotions and potions (hmm, I haven’t told you about them, have I? I guess I should do a post on my homemade beauty products) I am going on an introduction to herbal medicine next Saturday, which I am really looking forward to. As such I am leaving space on my allotment for growing some herbs too – I have got seeds for the top 10 herbs James Wong recommends in his book Grow your own drugs and these will be going in as soon as possible.
My allotment for me makes me feel slightly conflicted. I am such a control freak in everyday life and extremely organised and a very strong part of me wants to make it very neat and tidy. But another part of me wants it to be messy and chaotic, so working down there is a real change from the rest of my life. Whatever happens I must get down there more often, working outdoors is such a fantastic feeling and really energises me. Although I have to say now, having had a swim, done some baking and it being eight hours later I am not feeling very energetic. Oh well, I should sleep well tonight!
For those of you who are in spring how are you doing with the weeds?