Saturday, August 30, 2008

Digging for Victory

Let it be known that the wondrous day has come. SomeBeans has dug to the end of the allotment. He is now bereft; I am thinking of hiring him out to the newer people on the site.

I've not written about the allotment for a while. We will be giving up the half plot come renewal time in April. The only produce we currently have on it are strawberries (due to be transplanted onto the whole plot), some beans (ha ha! - actually, he spends most of his time on the whole plot) and carrots and parsnips. Oh, and couch grass, horsetails (see previous post), bindweed, etc.

On and off, the whole plot has been dug over for the past 12 months, a couple of rows at a time, painfully pulling out perennial weed roots. Sometimes too frozen to pull out the roots, often too wet to tread on, the soil has now been turned. Half of it is already planted up, but the second half is currently covered to try and reduce weed growth. Just for more fun, this plot also has ground elder, as well as the other weeds mentioned above. Ho hum. It's just as well I quite enjoy weeding; apparently, the rich used to employ lady weeders for sixpence a week to help maintain their gardens. So, if anyone would like to employ a slow but thorough digger and a lady weeder, please let me know.SomeBeans


Anonymous said...

That's a depressing list of horrible weeds.Gardening takes enough effort without the extra burden of coping with invaders like that.

Lucy Corrander said...

I'm perplexed.

You do all that work clearing the ground then hand half of it back.



HappyMouffetard said...

We took on a half allotment to see if we could do the 'allotment thing' but then discovered that the half wasn't really enough for what I wanted to grow. The other half of the allotment was even more of a wilderness than the first half, with the detritus of about 20 years of other plotters piling rubbish onto it, so taking that on to make a whole wasn't the easy option. So, we took on a whole plot, in addition to the half, with the plan of giving up the half at some point. It's just ticking over at the moment as there's not much point putting any new crops into it, except fast growers like lettuce, turnips & mooli.

Lucy Corrander said...

That makes sense. I understand now.

I'm interested that you grow mooli.

I used to get it when the greengrocer delivered a selection of vegetables each week and was never sure what to do with it.

I grated it into salads and put it in stews but, mostly, found it rather tasteless. How do you use it?


SomeBeans said...

Lucy, we're growing mooli this year because it did really well last year and I have some Chinese colleagues who are desperate for them!

HappyMouffe elides slightly the process of allotment acquisition; the whole allotment was taken on sans consultation. I'm a tidy sort of soul and HappyMouffe knew that once I'd seen the wilderness I'd be obliged to dig...

Lucy Corrander said...

Hello SomeBeans

I appreciate the idea of growing something simply because it does well. Your friends are fortunate too.

I take it you are the 'elegant' part of the partnership?


HappyMouffetard said...

Hmm, elegant wouldn't be the word - tidy, perhaps.

Lucy, I enjoyed the mooli as raw chunks with hummus, but there's only so much you can eat. We did discover that roasting it was a complete failure.

Elizabeth Musgrave said...

Hah, daughter and son in law are just to about to take on a half plot in exactly the same way, to see how they do. They have caught the growing veg bug this year and run out of space in their garden. Hope they will be moving onto greater things soon just like you.

Anonymous said...

Some nice clean digging in evidence there.
Love the blog title btw.