Friday 8 November 2013

Getting Ready for Next Year

There is always mixed emotion in any garden or allotment at this time of the year.  I am sad to pull up the remains of the plants that fed us so well during the summer but also excited at the preparation of the ground so that we will be able to plant straight into it in the Spring.

When I first started at my allotment in the cold and the wind I admit to having those thoughts. What have I agreed to? What on earth was I thinking when I agreed to work this 'lawn'?

And here we are at the end of the first growing season and I have not regretted a single moment spent up there.  Of course, I do admit, that we have had a fantastic summer weather wise but the sense of achievement is absolutely fantastic!

Mr R had to be dragged up to the allotment under threat of death and starvation in April and May but by July he was insisting on popping up after work to make sure everything was well watered! He is now even planning for the Spring!

There is still loads more digging to do over the next few months weather permitting. We still have to cut back all the blackberry bushes and burn the pile we cut back but we have learned so much and are looking forward to next year!!

Onions are planted and will stay safe under the fleecy stuff until they are a bit bigger and the birds can't get them.

But not everything is finished growing for the winter - sprouts and purple sprouting broccoli continue to fight the elements. Don't know if we will have these ready for Christmas but they will certainly be ready for harvest in the new year.

My plan at the moment is to get loads of the rest of the digging done before Christmas and covered over with carpet or heavy plastic to keep the weeds from re-growing.  We are also cutting back all the fruit at the far end of the plot to find out exactly what is there.  Mr R treated himself to an incinerator to burn all the debris and of course the ashes get dug back into the ground.
When we have it cleared we will put down some mulched wood fibre to keep the weeds down and try to do some training as the new fruits grow next year. 
I also have an apple tree courtesy of Waitrose to plant there too.
And the most exciting times are ahead.  Thompson & Morgan the seed specialist have sent me their 2014 catalogue so I can spend hours planning and designing my vegetable growing ready to order my seeds and get planting in the new year.

I also want to thank Thompson & Morgan for the seeds they sent me at the start of my allotment journey!