The extra bits...(Under construction).

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Allotment ...... Post 4

    


      Firstly let me express my humble gratitude for the advice and ideas offered by your good selves regarding the allotment that I am endeavouring to run, or should that be ruin? Any and all advice or ideas offered are always gratefully accepted.


     As you may have gathered from my previous allotment posts a lack of knowledge has not stopped me, upon occasion, attacking the plot with some gusto..... even if I do say so myself. I now have an idea of where I want to go with this 'Kingdom of John'. So to recap, the basic, but fluid, plan looks something like this.... 


     About two thirds of the plot will be given over to apple orchard, which has now mainly been planted although I'm considering the addition of a row of cordon apple trees which will also define the line of one boundary. The purpose of the orchard, instead of filling the plot with row upon row of manicured vegetables? Well it's quite a simple answer...... Cider! The other third will be given over to vegetables in raised beds. I wish to lesson my impact on nature so I'll be avoiding herbicides, pesticides and other such chemicals where possible. I'll also be trying to incorporate measures to encourage a balance of wildlife within the plot, which may well cause some raised eyebrows with the other allotmenters. I've received some great tips from Countryside Tails on helping to encourage wildlife and her post here is an excellent read regarding plants to incorporate in such a scheme. Which leads nicely to one of my ideas which is to turn the floor area of the orchard into a wildflower meadow hopefully attracting a host of wee pollinating beasties which will benefit not just mine but also the neighbours allotments. A further boundary will be defined by a low mixed fruit hedge and my thanks for this idea to annie b. There will of course be a shed and Cro's idea of one seems most agreeable, with one additional item...... I'm hoping to incorporate a living roof on the shed.  


     I have already started upon the wildflower meadow and bearing in mind that the majority of it will be under the dappled shade of my cider trees I'm incorporating some woodland flowers and then letting mother nature add what she wishes too (obviously she knows best). My aged and rapidly decaying parents cleared one of their flower borders the other week of several clumps of bluebells and just cast them aside into their 'dump anything that doesn't fit into how a garden should be' area. I was supposed to be doing this for them so that the bulbs could be saved, patience is not one of their virtues I have to say. So arriving there t'other day expecting to grab myself some freshly dug bulbs I ended up rummaging in the dump zone trying to find as many bulbs as I could salvage. I ended up with quite a few but unfortunately most, if not all were now in poor condition. Not to be disheartened I have planted them into the strimmed grass of my plot, mainly around the two golden delicious cider trees which will have the wider spread of foliage of the cider trees that I've planted.




     I've painstakingly planted each bulb separately so hopefully if some die and rot they won't affect others. One bonus was a clump of snowdrops found in with the bluebells and these have been planted the same way. Fingers crossed that a reasonable percentage will appear next season. 


     My next task is to free the two original cider trees from the jungle that is strangling them, they are also in dire need of pruning but I believe that will have to wait until late autumn and their sap to drop so that they don't bleed to death.




     At the rear of the plot it is bordered by traditional council insecure fencing which the local youth take great pleasure in climbing and causing mayhem on the allotments (bless em) at the point it passes my Kingdom , as here is one of the few bare spots in the fence. So I've encouraged Bear's name sake, instead of ragging it out as a weed, by threading it's tendrils through the fence, providing a future thorny deterrent and perhaps some 'cultivated' wild fruit... result methinks.





    Finally this week I'm hoping to have one if not two raised beds in position ready for filling with compost.

     I'm hoping that this allotment will give me a place to shelter from the world and to collect my thoughts when the black dog next bites. I have no idea how long I'll be able to tend this ground as my life is still fluid and staying in one place is something that may well still elude me. 


     Till the next time, thanks for taking the time to read thus far and please take bloody good care of your loved ones..they are so special and should be treated as such every waking moment of your lives. 


John 




19 comments:

  1. We are also thinking about turning our front yard/garden into a meadow to attract butterflies, hummingbirds and bees of all sorts. We'll see how the neighbors feel about it as well. Your garden sounds lovely and I hope your rescued bulbs all survive and flourish!

    Kat

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Kat, Hummingbirds eh? a little exotic for North Wales methinks :-) I hope that you'll share a record of your wildlife meadow.

      Delete
  2. Thank you for the link, John. Great idea about the bramble too.... And can we have a picture of Bear on the blog at some point please? I've yet to see him/her :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bear or real name Bramble can be found if you scroll to the bottom of my page CT. She's the very cute springer. The brambles seemed like a good idea...till I spent half an hour this evening pulling their spikes from my fingers. Oh and the link is the least I can do your blog is a firm favourite of mine and your help and advice is always warmly appreciated.

      Delete
  3. Sounds like a good plan. With your raised beds make sure you mix the compost with some soil. Compost on its own drys out too quickly. I like what you've done with the fence. Maybe plant some blackthorn next year to really stop thr buggers and maybe get some sloes in the bargain!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the tip Kev, appreciate it. As for the blackthorn they're already on the to do list.

      Delete
  4. I take it an allotment is a garden spot the city lets you use?

    Can't you put up barbed wire to keep people off of it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Welcome Mr. Flashman,
      Your about right with that, the best definition I found blearly eyed this morning is here:- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allotment_(gardening)
      As for barbed wire...I wish.

      Delete
  5. Lady Magnon is Swedish, and, as you probably know, all swedes own a tiny red painted cabin on a tiny private island. Most of these cabins have grass roofs, and are stunningly beautiful. Make sure you water it in times of drought.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi John Great to read your post about your allotment and all the work you have done and are doing. The Blackthorn is a great idea then you can make Sloe Gin, very easy to do and delicious. I have not, as yet looked at older posts but a few photos of how far on you are would be good. Perhaps you have done that in another post. It is great that you will attracting the insects etc and having a nature roof on your shed. You dog looks lovely. Is the allotment far from your home? Must go now adn look at some of your older post so have a great weekend in your patch.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your kind words Margaret, and welcome aboard.

      Delete
  7. You need to get the soil dug and get your potatoes before it's too late to plant them, John. A good trailer of well rotted fym would also help.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Dave,
      Already ahead of you, earlies and seconds already in the plot nextdoor, the one I help out on.

      Delete
  8. What wonderful plans you have for the allotment - it sounds as though it will be a wonderful place for wildlife to flourish. You've made great progress so far and I can't wait to read your next post. Your dog is just beautiful by the way :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, hopefully I won't disappoint.

      Delete
  9. Hi, so glad some of my ideas were useful. An allotment takes years to evolve so try not to overwhelm yourself with doing everything all at once,as it will become a chore and it should be your little bit of Eden to think and contemplate/ meditate. What is this talk of leaving, I hope you are not running away from yourself as it does not matter where you are in the world you will take your internal baggage with you. In fact the greatest thing you can do is enjoy what your local area has to offer. Simple pleasures are the best. If this is not what you meant my apologies. John I am going to give you a link to a blog I read about a Walsall girl who does not give #### about what people think about her you may have seen this again apologies if you have. She is fascinating and whilst I could never be like this she is great fun. http://vintagevixon.blogspot.co.uk/?m=0 you don't have to post this on your blog, just wanted you to see that we are all diverse and all struggling to be accepted for who we are. You sounded a bit down hence the lecture. Take care.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Going well! Cultivated and wild alike. Summer should look a beautiful tangle! Congrats on the energy and drive, John. It's great to see.

    ReplyDelete

Feel free to comment but no blaspheming now...