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My very own plot!


By balcony


My very own plot!

After around a year on the waiting list I’ve finally got my very own plot! Actually it’s only half a plot as it’s 5 poles long, not 10 as in a full plot. Our Council is splitting up all allotments now as they become available. I got a letter from the Town Council offering me one of two plots.The problem with that first plot is that almost half of the half plot is occupied by several fruit trees & only half is available to actually cultivate! The other one they offered me, which I’ve taken, is at the other extreme of the allotment field from where I work with Gerry, which means I’ve got to walk a lot further along the field to get to it.

No.19B – mine:

View from the beginning of my half of the plot looking towards the bottom:

View from the bottom looking towards the beginning of my half of the plot:

The first half of the allotment No.19 – A – is full of fruit trees! To get to No.19 – B – mine, I have to squeeze past the trees & plot 20 (not subdivided yet though not being cultivated) which has a wire fence at its beginning. I have to duck under the apple tree branches. If that plot remains unoccupied, which is most likely, I’ll cut back some branches to make it easier to get passed after the apples have gone.

I started to clear a strip yesterday as the plot has been abandoned for at least a year, but I hardly found any perennial weeds, no Nettles, not thorns, no Dandelions, no Horseradish but lots of grass! It only took me an hour to clear a strip & sow it with Sunflowers. I’d saved a lot of seed from last year &, although I had sown a strip, x2, on Gerry’s plot I still had a great deal of seed left. I’ve used it all up now.

Today I cleared some more & while I was busy Gerry came down & gave me a hand to clear some more. We now have approx. half the plot cleared! I planted some Beetroot seedlings I had growing in the GH but they look pitiful!

I also sowed some more Sunflower seeds! These were mini- Sunflowers that I saved from the ones Gerry grew last year.

Not much to see at present but shortly the seeds will germinate & the plants will grow & I’ll have lots of flowers! The Beetroot will get bigger & I’ll have put in some more seeds – not too sure what yet!

I’ll see about posting another blog in about a month’s time so that we can all see the progress the new plot is making!

Meanwhile I shall continue to work with Gerry on his plots. He has told me that if there is anything on his plot I would like then to feel free to take it!

I’ll continue to use his shed & GH as well as his tools as I don’t have any of my own. He’s very happy for me to do this!

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Bon courage, Balcony!

I bet in a month's time i'll be transformed!.. :)

11 Jun, 2011


I bet you're so excited! It's great you've got help to call on too, you're going to have such fun this season watching things grow! Of're going to have to plant the 'things' first!! Good luck!

11 Jun, 2011


Well done on gaining your very own plot ... but how on Earth have you managed to clear it so quickly in this very dry weather? Ours is like rock! The Sunflowers should look great in a short while . . .

11 Jun, 2011


Oh Balcony, I am so happy you can get your hands in the dirt again, great stuff. The beet root seedlings look very strong, you just wait. Can not wait to see transformation, and Dave seems a very nice person.

12 Jun, 2011


Congratulations on getting your own plot. I bet that you are exited about it, I know I was when we got our datcha last year. Now you will be out in the fresh air all day, being able to see how it changes during the 4 seasons, in spring seeing the new plants popping up, in summer seeing the flowers blooming and the veg and fruit ripening, in atumn seeing how all the colours change and in winter seeing it sleeping under a cover of snow. Now every day you will be watching the weather forecast to see if you can get down there.....just as I do. Good luck and have fun and enjoy every minute of it there.

12 Jun, 2011


well done,hope to see loads of pics as the seasons move on

12 Jun, 2011


Lovely news! Will 'Mrs Balcony' be joining you or, with all the work and extra walking involved, will she become an 'allotment widow?' Perhaps she'll be mollified by all the lovely Sunflower bouquets you'll take home? Good luck with it all and I look forward to progress blogs. :o)

12 Jun, 2011



12 Jun, 2011


Good Luck! :-)

12 Jun, 2011


That is good news Balcony, I know you were sharing with Gerry but it will be so much better to have your own space, you have worked hard and so lucky it was only grass to clear and not those tough huge weeds that one sees a lot of in fields and allotments, don`t know what they are called but do know they have a huge long root that breaks in the ground if not dug out properly.
You`ll be needing your own shed and tools now especially to save your legs instead of carting backwards and forwards between you and Gerry, oh heck, spending spree coming up, lol.
Is there water laid on around your allotments? I know some of our local ones do have but others are not so lucky and have to rely on waterbutts, obviously not so good this year..
Pleased for you, there`ll be no stopping you now so happy allotmenting......

12 Jun, 2011


Glad youve got your own plot now Balcony.... good luck with it all......

12 Jun, 2011


Thank you all for so many comments, I'm quite surprised (that so many should reply so quickly)! :-))

@KF: You can bet it will be transformed in a month's time! With just ONE HOUR on Friday I cleared a strip & planted lots of seeds! With Gerry's help on Saturday we got half the plot cleared & some Beetroot in as well as more Sunflowers!

@Libet: Gerry told me he had some Tomato plants as well as lots of Lettuce seedlings in his GH at home. He told me he would leave them in the GH on the plot & that I could plant them in my new plot! :-))

@Shirley: Like you we've had no rain in several months, except over the last Bank Holiday Monday when we had a few hours of rain which penetrated about 1 & 1/2 in through the soil. The ground is dust dry &. although as you said it's hard as a rock, it was only necessary to hoe off the weeds, no digging needed.

@Adoons: I think you are a little confused about who Dave is! David is my real name & Dave's a short form of it. As I've written blogs on the allotment I've been sharing with Gerry for over a year I decided to put "Dave's plot" on all my photos of the new plot. Hope that clears up the confusion for you.

@Rogi: Thanks very much for your comments but I've been working on my friend Gerry's allotment for over a year now. I've become accustomed to seeing the allotments under all conditions & to being there as well. I even went down the day after Christmas Day when the plot was covered in snow! Obviously I couldn't do any work I just went down to check on the few plants I had in the GH.

@Nariz: "Mrs Balcony" only yesterday asked me if we could take a picnic table & chairs down so that she could sit & do something else while I could work on the plot! She did come down on just one occasion some months ago, during April I think, but she stayed in the GH! (Talk about a "Hothouse plant"!) & learnt to do crochet!"

You ask if "she become an 'allotment widow?'" Well she almost is now! Except as I no longer have a job & she works I try to spend only the hours she's not at home down there. Occasionally I leave her at home while I go down to the plot for a couple of hours but not very often.

@Coshad: Thank you very much for your words of encouragement! There will be more pictures during the summer alright! LOL! Keep an eye open for an update in about a month's time. I think it's too ambitious to post blogs every 2 weeks on the new plot! Nevertheless in a week's time I will be posting another blog on my progress on Gerry's allotment.

Thank you, Red_aly & Holly for your comments.

@Lincslass: Thank you & I think you may be referring to Horseradish or Dock or even possibly to Dandelions. These 3 plants have long deep tap roots that if they break up, while you are trying to dig them up, will regrow form small pieces left in the soil. I agree I was fortunate not to encounter any of those plants on an abandoned plot! I didn't come across Nettles or many Thistles either! :-)) There are a 2 or 3 Blackberries plants growing through the boundary with plot 19A (the 1st half of the plot I have (mine is 19B)) but they are small & I will deal with them later on.

As I'm out of work (semi-retired! LOL!) I don't have the luxury of being able to splash out on a shed or tools. "oh heck, spending spree coming up, lol." . Gerry has told me I'm welcome to continue to use his shed & tools! :-)) It does mean a bit of extra walking but I don't particularly mind. It's all good exercise &, hopefully, will help to get my belly down a little! As for water on the allotment field, there are a lot of big tanks & I have the fortune of having one at the start of Plot 19A so I only need walk the distance to the beginning of the plot &, hey presto! there's the water tank! :-)) Just it's a bit tricky getting past the overgrown apple trees that partially block the path at the beginning of 19A. If the plot is not occupied when the apples have all gone I'll cut back the branches so as to make access to my plot easier.

12 Jun, 2011


Good luck, its not that long ago that allotments where 10 a penny, now it seems everyone wonts one.

12 Jun, 2011


Thanks, Clarice. :-))

Quite true - our local Town Council tried to encourage people to take on a new plot about 4 years ago. I mentioned it to my wife & she said why don't you apply for one. I didn't as I was working shifts in a factory & didn't fancy the idea of working on an allotment at the time besides which we hardly eat veg at home so I didn't see the need.

After being unemployed for about a year my friend, Gerry, from church invited me to share his plot & a half. He also encouraged me to put in for my own & a year later I now have my own.

12 Jun, 2011


Congratulations on your new plot Dave, you have made a big change already can't wait to se the sea of Sunflowers! what did you do with all those lovely red poppies? hope you saved some of the seed, Will look forward to following your progress Happy Gardening;0))

12 Jun, 2011


awh! shucks Dave, sorry about that, definetly confused, still happy U got a plot to play in. Go easy, do not over do.

12 Jun, 2011


@PP my wife was thinking the very same about the beautiful poppies :(
But good luck with the Plot

12 Jun, 2011


Don't worry about the Poppies - they'll be back in force next year! Meanwhile the abandoned plot No.20, alongside mine has 1,000s of them! I noticed one plant that had much darker, more blood coloured flowers than the rest. Don't know if it will come true from seed but I thought about getting a seed head or two in a few weeks time when they dry out.

I had to get rid of most of them as I need to cultivate the ground! I'm not paying for Poppies I can't do anything with even if a lot in one place do look lovely! If I could sell them as cut flowers or could eat them then I might think again! LOL!

The Sunflowers should certainly look lovely in a few months time! There are both tall & short varieties.

Today I planted the Tomatoes & Sweet Corn Gerry left in the GH for me yesterday. :-)) He left me some Lettuce seedlings that look like those "Cut & Come again" variety. I didn't have time to plant them this morning so I'll see about putting them in this afternoon.

13 Jun, 2011


That's such good news you have the allotment area :o)

13 Jun, 2011


Hi Dave ...good luck with the Allotment...and many happy growing hours...

14 Jun, 2011


well done on getting an allotment, i tried to get one up here couple of years ago but they dont exist. There is an allotment group set up and they are lobbying but 4 years on and still no action. We have had gallons of water up here hasn,t stopped for 6 weeks really, april was nice but that was it. Am looking forward to seeing the progress on your plot, how exciting.

14 Jun, 2011


Thank you all for your comments :-))

@TT: I'd had to wait about a year but now I have my own plot though I will continue working with Gerry.

@Crissue: Thank you for your good wishes. I've already transformed 3/4 of the plot!

@Cazcat: Thank you for your good wishes, also. Here there are at least 3 allotment sites that I know off & there may be another one in a new part of the town a long way from me so I've been told.

Water? From the sky? We only get water from the tanks! We are officially in a drought zone! Cambridgeshire, where I live, has had less than 30% of our average rainfall of the year up to now! Even a normal year the average would probably be less than what you get in 3 months on average!

15 Jun, 2011


Congratulations on getting your plot at last lots of hard work has been done by you already:)

15 Jun, 2011


Happy Allotmenting/gardening/digging/planting/weeding/eating. I think you have done a great job at clearing it so quickly well done you guys.

17 Jun, 2011


Thanks, ladies! :-))

19 Jun, 2011


I jumped the gun somewhat on announcing this was to be my new allotment! :o

I got a call from the Town Council telling me that this plot had been taken by a lady 2 days before me!

The lady who deals with allotments at the Town Council offices was off ill for a few days so couldn't answer my email accepting the plot. She phoned me to tell me the plot had been taken on Saturday 11th June! She also told me they send out notifications to several applicants for the same plot at the same time! So it's a case of "first come, first served!"

This morning I took down the canes I'd put up for some climbing beans. The rest of the plants I put in I've decided to leave as if I try to transplant them a 2nd time in only 10 days I'll break the new roots being formed leading to a set back, if not death, of the plants.

I obviously can't transplant all the Sunflower seeds I put in or the Pinto beans so they will have to stay.

The new tenant will either have to dig the the plants up to put in her own plants or leave them to grow & harvest later.

22 Jun, 2011


Hallo Balcony. What a pity that you have not got the plot anymore, you put such a lot of work into it in a very short time...that is what I call bad luck. What are the chances of you getting another one in the near future?.

25 Jun, 2011


Wonder if the lady might like to share the plot, I know it would not be as big for you but anything is better than nothing until you get your own Balcony, so sorry you were two days too late. They should be more efficient at the Council, if someone is off ill they should still cover her e.mails etc. what a sad outcome. You worked so hard on that plot. Hope you get one soon.

25 Jun, 2011


Hi Balcony ...
sorry to hear you lost out on the allotment ...
not very efficient of the council...
Hunts DC I guess ... ???
After the mix-up, I suggest you make a case for being given priority of the next available plot ...

25 Jun, 2011


Oh what a shame, after all that work too...Maybe there's something better on the Horizon for you, let's hope so...

25 Jun, 2011


Oh Balcony, I would be one very cross person if this had happened to me. Just because somebody was off sick doesn't mean another person can't check the status of letters and emails, does it? What about the abandoned plot no.20 you mentioned earlier? Would you be able to take that one on? Sorry for all the questions, I'm just so sorry that, after you clearing three quarters of a plot, it turns out not to be yours. Grrr! : o ((

25 Jun, 2011


Thank you to everyone who has expressed their feelings about me not getting the plot even after all the work I'd put in.

I'm not too upset about it as after all if I'd listened to my wife in the first place I wouldn't have started work on the plot nor would I have put the plants in, so it really is my own fault. I'm more annoyed at the Town Council for offering the same plot to several people at the same time!

On Saturday, 25th, I got another letter from the Town Council offering me another Plot - 19A! This is the first half of plot 19. I shall refuse it as there is no cultivable ground on it! It is full of apple trees (2), very overgrown Raspberry canes, Blackberry bushes, Gooseberry bushes, Rhubarb plants, Black currant bushes, non-fruiting Strawberry plants as well as lots of weeds & Poppies. If you want to pay £12/year for a fruit plot alone, well, that's your option! I want to grow some veg & fruit & I would only accept it if it were part of the whole plot 19 - like it had been till a few weeks ago! In fact in my acceptance email I query the possibility of having that half as well as 19B.

26 Jun, 2011

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