Friday, 5 March 2010

Spring is definitely on its way....


Today was sublimely gorgeous.  More than a little chilly in the shade but the sunshine was really warm and the sky was as blue as blue can be.  So I did what any sensible person would do and spent an hour down at the allotment.

Our allotment steward sends out a monthly email newsletter and March's edition arrived yesterday.  It seems, rather sadly, that the local yoof have been entering the site in the wee hours and doing whatever it is you would do at that time in the pitch black in the middle of winter (or, rather, early Spring).  The newsletter said some plots had been damaged so I thought I might as well trot along and just see if everything was hunky dory.

I was the only person there and the chickens were very excited to see me - they all rushed up to the fence of their enclosure in a great clucking flurry (be careful how you say that....) and I was rather saddened to have to tell them that I couldn't do anything for them.  They watched me with their accusatory beady eyes as I passed by and then they scuttled off when they realised I wasn't going to give them any food. Rather excitingly, it seems that because the chicken project has gone so well, there's talk of having pigs on site now as well!!

There has been a lot of activity at the site over the last few weeks.  The newbies have got all enthusiastic and come and dug everything over, and it all looks well-worked and anticipatory.  I couldn't see any obvious damage to anyone's plot and I was relieved, but not too surprised, to see that mine was untouched.  I don't have a padlock on my shed so that no-one has to break anything to get into it to see there's nothing to nick from it anyway.  I keep all my 'good' stuff (petrol-strimmer and petrol) at home and bring it when I need it.

Everything is still mostly dormant but there are some signs of emergence - my cherry tree has new buds on it:

Cherry Tree buds (it's a bit out of focus but I was having a few problems with the camera this morning - or it might have been my eyes!)
And as I was wandering around the site, I spotted this emerging rhubarb which looked like a heart:

The black weed suppressant fabric that I use a lot of had been blown around a bit so that took some straightening out and pinning down, and then I decided to tackle the Moving Of The Dalek.

The black Dalek compost maker bin thing is very slightly cone-shaped and has no base on it, so once it's filled to your satisfaction and the compost has started to be made at the bottom, there comes a time when you have to lift off the whole thing so that you can get to the compost more easily.  The little doors at the bottom don't really work very well - it's easier to shift the whole thing.  You then have to fork the top layer of stuff (which is the newest and unlikely to be rotted down very much) back into the dalek to form the new base layer.  You can then use the compost on the soil.  I forked a load into a trub and used it as a mulch on my raspberries, blackcurrants and loganberries.

That was about it down there for today.  I was out in the brilliant sunshine and sharp, fresh air for an hour and it felt fabulous.  More seeds got sown at home later on in the afternoon but before I left, I decided I had to take a picture of this particularly atmospheric shed on the site:


  1. Yep spring is certainly on its way and I've been enjoying the spring sunshine outtdoors as well.

  2. It makes such a difference when the sun shines. Can it be that spring is finally on it's way? Your cherry tree looks to be getting ready to give you a bumper crop, I got the total amount of one cherry off mine last year, I'm hoping for better things from it this year.

  3. I'm glad that your plot was unscathed - vandals seem to be drawn to allotment sites.

    We managed a bit of work this week and our cherry is at about the same stage as yours.

    Our rhubarb leaves are a lovely colour but it will be a while yet before they are ready for a crumble - fortunately we have some in the freezer!

    No hazel catkins though as we pollarded our overgrown bushes last year.

  4. hello mrs jones from a miss jones! i have just found your blog and loved your writing style :) i look forward to regularly following what you get up to. best wishes for a successfully growing year :) steph

  5. Kella - things are most definitely perking up!

    Jo - I got a total of none cherries last year. Obviously I'm hoping for more this year!

    GLA - I've not planted rhubarb yet (the picture was from someone else's plot). I meant to as The Husband likes it, but never got round to it.

    Steph - Hello and welcome! Thanks for your nice comments. If you're interested in what I write, I have another blog full of non-allotment related blather at - it's also in my links list.


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