If I have learned anything from lock down throughout May, it is the simple fact that not following the advice from the experts, like not following the advice in textbooks on allotments, is ill-advisable. My sheer excitement and enthusiasm has left my allotment looking poor in comparison to others incredible plots.
I could spend this time comparing my plot to everyone elses, but that would just bring me down, and at the moment in time, uplift is what is needed.
There has been a lot happening on the plot, and following April’s incredible heat, May has followed suit, in that there hasn’t been any rain since before we went into lock down. Each day has been a hit and run. Due to working everyday at home, and also in the evening, The allotment has been more of a hit and run. Combining walking the dog with a quick dash to the allotment to wet the crops.
I have also used this time to cut up a pallet and make a bench for the allotment, I took great pride in this feat of diy. It now sits proudly outside the she, and the pleasure I felt sitting on my bench, the Swedish stove boiling the water filled me with joy.
Although the plot hasn’t been turning out the vibrant crops as some of my allotmenteers. The joy of seeing the salad leaves and the radish poking though is incredible. The fact that from these tiny seeds have burst through amazes me.
Of course the weeds seem to be flourishing, regardless of how much I try to avoid watering them. I am worried that the weeds I’m pulling out are the crops I’m expecting to eat later in the year… Time will tell.
I am learning the need to be patient and not to rush. The garlic’s un-prepared bed has now been uprooted and replaced with beetroot seedlings. I am hopeful that the now outdoor planted tomato plants will soon take root, and now I have reined back in my use of manure which nearly scorched my maris pipers, I have now started to see them rekindling their growth.
Although there is always bits of work to do at the plot, from keeping bits of framework together, planting out seedlings, which given the over-spacing I originally did, has afforded me some space for some of the more recent seedlings that I have been able to put out. Weeding is the ongoing job, but there is also time to be still. At home our bee house has been an incredible opportunity to see wonderful solitary bees pollinate and nest, so it seemed only natural to try and increase that opportunity at the plot, So with a new bee house in place and a source of nectar, it will be yet another opportunity to and reason to sit and bee still and #TakeNotice
I do feel lucky having this little oasis to while away a little time. My own piece of breathing space, where I can forget, plan, and just savor those stolen moments in between the spaces of this world.
A Thirsk Counsellor
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