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NEW ALLOTMENT: The Report!
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Jeff



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 145
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 8:46 am    Post subject: NEW ALLOTMENT: The Report!  Reply with quote    

Hi all,

Ok, so I finally got over to my new allotment site to attack the grass and brambles and..... I'm pretty much pleased!!!

I have got a few very light patches of Couch Grass but nothing worth crying over. The bulk of grasses are just lightly rooted 'normal' grass and it came up a treat, I cut it to ground level and then skimmed the root section out in turfs ensuring that I kept as much soil as possible. The turfs I lined up about 6 high in a row at the front of the plot to cover and rot down...

I cleared 6 foot by 30 foot in 4 hours (I know, people looked at me like I was a madman, working like an ape and covering myself in dirt)

So, the soil, well once I had staked the turfs I then dug over the whole space that I'd cleared, removing the few roots that were present, but in general, what a joy it was. The soil was light, crumbly but very rich and dark. It smelt very earth with a whiff of manure/rotted material. I understand that the plot was dormant for 7 years but was regularly cared for before then, the plot is totally organic and is going to be a joy to work with, yes, I'm happy!!!

I reckon it will take another 10 days like that to clear the plot, I have got my brother coming over for a day on Sunday so should get a double-days work done then...

So, there you go, what do you think?

Bernie66



Joined: 14 Jan 2005
Posts: 13967
Location: Eastoft
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 8:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

It's an honest feeling when you've worked the soil for a few hours. I love looking at it just before I leave. The first soil which was turned over is drying out but it gradually changes coulour the fresher the earth is. My biggest problem is the greehhouse and shed that the council kindly flattened and turned over with a JCB before I took it over. No work with my bare hands down that end of the plot for a few years methinks.
My second biggest problem is trying to get some work done whilst the other Allotmenteers put their advice to me at every opportunity, i never get a solid two hours work done without interuption-all good hearted but sometimes frustrating.

Jeff



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 145
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I know what you mean

I had a lovely old chap come over when I was mid-attack who invited me over to view his prestine plot. Ok it was nice to have a break and a peek at the good things to come, but I'm one of these people that has to keep working to hold my momentum and as a result it was hard to really get going and the afternoon was tough...

Still, of course I'd rather have friendly people popping over than anything else!

Behemoth



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 19009
Location: Leeds
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

My plot's the furthest from the gate in the top far corner so somebody has to have a pretty good reason to stop by for a chat.

My manure is being delivered this week. This makes me happy.

Bernie66



Joined: 14 Jan 2005
Posts: 13967
Location: Eastoft
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Behemoth wrote:
My plot's the furthest from the gate in the top far corner so somebody has to have a pretty good reason to stop by for a chat.

My manure is being delivered this week. This makes me happy.


The only time when you are happy to have a load of sh*t dumped on you!

Jonnyboy



Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 23924
Location: under some rain.
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Sounds like you've got great soil Jeff, what's next?

Res



Joined: 07 Apr 2005
Posts: 1172
Location: Allotment Shed, Harlow
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Bernie66 wrote:
My second biggest problem is trying to get some work done whilst the other Allotmenteers put their advice to me at every opportunity, i never get a solid two hours work done without interuption-all good hearted but sometimes frustrating.


I dont find it so much the advice, its the bloody gossiping. Does my head it. Like a lot of you I guess, I dont get much time on the plot, so when I do, its action stations to try and get as much done as possible before you have to go off again. So there you are heaving and puffing, knowing you arnt going to get it all done but hopping that by some small miracal that you'll get finished at least what you set out to do, when you get one (if your lucky) fellow allotmenteer come over and start trying to get you involved in the current gossip "He said this", "he's done that", "have you seen fred's marrow " etc etc. Aaaaaaaah! GO AWAY!...........I'M TRYING TO GET MINE DONE!

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Some people give you advice like "Oh, no, you can't grow celery here, that'll never work, don't like the look of that beetroot, and swedes can't be grown in Cambridge...".

Others are far more encouraging

What I like best about the constant 'advice' is that you can't follow it all, so much of it is contradictory

Jonnyboy



Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 23924
Location: under some rain.
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

The only advice i would give is get the long term stuff in as soon as possible, asparagus beds and soft fruit being a couple of ideas.

Jeff



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 145
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

That's exectly what I'm going to be doing John, get the Fruit, Asparagus etc in now and continue with the rest of the site ahead of bulk spring planting...

p.s. I want to get some Asparagus in to try and get a small crop next year, how might I go about that knowing that it takes 3 years if I'm to grow it from seed

I know I can buy crowns, but can they be planted now for a moderate crop next year? And they cost a fair bit to get hold of as well don't they...???

Jonnyboy



Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 23924
Location: under some rain.
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

If I had the cash I would go for crowns, you won't get much next year IIRC but the year after you should be using them to dip in your boiled eggs every day!

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Jeff wrote:
That's exectly what I'm going to be doing John, get the Fruit, Asparagus etc in now and continue with the rest of the site ahead of bulk spring planting...

p.s. I want to get some Asparagus in to try and get a small crop next year, how might I go about that knowing that it takes 3 years if I'm to grow it from seed

I know I can buy crowns, but can they be planted now for a moderate crop next year? And they cost a fair bit to get hold of as well don't they...???


Your crop the first year, from crowns, is tiny. And it's probably advisable not to crop any.

The next year, you can tentative pluck one spear per plant, maybe two.

The year after you can start harvesting.

To be honest, if you're not aiming to be there for more than three years, I wouldn't put sparrowgrass in.

Jeff



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 145
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I understood that they took a while as you suggest Cab, and being that they need a permanent spot I might not bother with them... We'll see, I've got 30'x90' so I might just find a small corner for a few...

Fruit-wise, I did try the bramble blackberries and they are very good! I am going to keep a small tame patch of them for sure...

Other than that I'll dig up the Autumn bliss canes from my garden once they've finished and I've cut them back and get them in in the next month...

Although it's not totally advisable, I might leave introducing the Strawb's until spring time...

Bernie66



Joined: 14 Jan 2005
Posts: 13967
Location: Eastoft
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 10:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

i am growing the strawbs at home until spring, its the same size as yours and the only thing growing is japanese onions. I reckon the strawbs will be better off at home til spring

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44104
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 05 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Well done Jeff, glad it's in a reasonable state.

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