Posts filed under ‘allotment tales’

hanging up the wellies for winter

25-10-13 - allotment_new sign 4BWell, throwing them away actually!  My poor B&Q green wellies, bought with such excitement to tackle our new plot in 2004, have died.  They’d been in semi-retirement since Euan arrived, reduced to providing a home for spiders in the shed at the allotment.  I retrieved them a few weeks ago for a trip into the Forest with E but soon discovered their failings when the brook we were paddling in gushed up through the bottom of my boot.  It’s a shame I wasn’t wearing a pair of seeland wellington boots, they could have held back a river.25-10-13 - allotment_E's wellies 4B
E loves his wellies and they provide essential protection against stings and prickles at the allotment.  He could do with a rubberised body suit though to really be safe at our plot.  I nearly lost him a few times in the jungle we call our plot {joking of course}.25-10-13 - allotment_lost in the grass 4B

We fought our way through the head-high-when-you’re-1 jungle to retrieve Daddy’s wellies from the shed.  Spiders still present but no sign of holes, obviously didn’t see as much gardening action as mine {wink}.  It’s strange to think one day E really will fill boots and gloves this big.  25-10-13 - allotment_in the shed with Daddy's gloves 4B25-10-13 - allotment_in G's wellies 4B
With just a bobbing head visible through the jungle of weeds a curious neighbour came over to check nothing untoward was happening to our shed (there’s been a spate of pointless shed break-ins over the last year or so).  What good fortune it was to see Jason with raspberries to pick but no chance of reaching them without risking a thorny fall for E.  In all honesty I don’t miss the back breaking work that goes into having an allotment but I do miss, with a pang and a sigh, the community of friendly, generous hearted people you’re guaranteed to find there.25-10-13 - allotment_E with Jason 4B
A pretty fine haul even for autumn fruiting bushes for this time of year
(will probably pair them with apples to make a scrummy seasonal dessert). 25-10-13 - allotment_E with raspberries 4B
The upside of a being absent from anything is the fresh perspective you have when you return.  Great things have happened during the year thanks to the work of the allotment committee; the track has been resurfaced and there’s an impressive communal shed at the entrance to the allotments.  When we talk about our poor neglected plot at home there are so many reasons to consider letting it go. As soon as I set foot through the gate there are so many reasons not to.  We’ve got quite a decision to make before tenancy renewals in January. I’ll have to write to Santa and ask for some weeding fairies. I’m sure he’ll say yes, I’ve been a good girl this year {not joking!}Collage communal shed 4B
Disclosure: this is a sponsored post for Mole Valley Farmers

October 27, 2013 at 6:53 pm 5 comments

wordless wednesday


August 28, 2013 at 12:16 pm 4 comments

hello plot, we’ve missed you!

29-3-13 - overgrown plot 4BWe took a walk out to the allotment at the end of March; our first visit of 2013.
It looked just as we expected but worse!  Even with all the work we’ll need to do to clear the soil for growing I’d imagined an idyllic scene of G and I busting a gut gardening while E played on a toy filled blanket on the grass.  How naive!  The allotment is riddled with nettles and brambles and all sorts of nasty spikey things and not at all safe for a little man out of arms.29-3-13 - overgrown plot towards shed 4B
With little enough time as it is, we can’t do the maintenance needed to contain it as well as grow food so for another year it will be a place less frequently visited and more likely to be tended by one or other of us in our usual tag team fashion. We’ve tamed it before and we can tame it again once E’s a bit older! This is how it looked this time last year with our parent task force helping out.
We managed a couple of jobs at least in the hour E slept.  I cut back the autumn fruiting raspberry canes and I’m keeping my fingers firmly crossed that they’ll work their usual magic of producing fruit effortlessly from July to October.  29-3-13 - cut raspberry canes 4B
G picked the rhubarb and while there wasn’t enough to make rhubarb wine he was very happy to make his legendary coronary inducing rhubarb fool.30-3-13 - rhubarb fool 4B

April 22, 2013 at 9:00 am 5 comments

punch drunk

The only thing that thrived at the allotment this year was the one thing we dug out last Autumn.  Our cardoon reached about 7+ feet high again with lots of purple thistles on it.  At least the bees were happy – positively punch drunk in fact.  How this little fella ever flew back to the hive I don’t know!

November 14, 2012 at 9:33 pm 3 comments

last plot pickings of 2012

Our September visit, to pick raspberries, already a distant memory and probably the last we’ll see of the plot this year.  I have no doubt that our crawling, babbling baby will be a walking, talking (maybe-digging-with-a-stick) boy when it’s time to brush the cobwebs off the spade next year.

er, what do you mean digging Mum, Chief Fruit Sampler is my job thank you!

ps.  it’s gone very quiet on the comment front so for anyone who is still reading ‘hello‘ and apologies for fewer gardening/cooking posts and more ‘life with baby’ posts.  That’s just how it is now so feel free to wander off and come back in thew new gardening season.  Would be lovely if you hung around though, cheers x

October 22, 2012 at 11:16 am 10 comments

allotment folk … Bernadette

Since I began blogging in June 2009 various allotment neighbours have found their way on to my blog in tales of warm hearted generosity (plant donations and biscuit sharing to name but a few).  Sorting through my photos recently I rediscovered these great pictures of Bernadette who has the very first plot you come to when you walk onto the allotment.  I’ve been lucky enough to see Bernadette on the handful of occasions I’ve made it to the plot since having E and I miss her cheery smile and encouragement now gardening is on the back burner. 

happy as a pig in muck (her words not mine) taking delivery of a ton of manure.

October 2, 2012 at 1:58 pm 5 comments

um, what lawn?

The story of our poor neglected plot is old news now but when my niece Kim, who’s over from Germany, asked if she could make her annual visit to the allotment I could hardly refuse.  I warned her that there’d be next to nothing to pick and that a little lawn care might be needed if she actually wanted to sit down!
”yeh, no problem” she shrugged non-chalantly before adding with a broad smile
”I know, I’ll look after Euan while you do the work!”
As Kim stepped from the car she stared open mouthed.  ”Are you crazy Aunty Nic?”
‘What?” I asked innocently, ”I’ll just get my shears out and we’ll have our lovely little patch of lawn back before you know it”.
Kim sighed,  ”you really are crazy? I think I’ll just sit here on the chair”.

And so she did and entertained E while I sheared rapidly around them, like the crazy Aunty I am, in a vain attempt to out run the rain cloud coming our way.  It didn’t work and within minutes we were running back to the car for shelter.  Not before I insisted on snapping them sitting on my naff, prickly patch of lawn and dashing about to harvest a meagre 4 runner beans and 18 raspberries! 

It was a rather sad and sorry harvest so no photographic evidence for you to mock (you wouldn’t would you dear reader?)  Instead here’s a reposting of last year’s rather fine harvest gathered by Tom and Kim while George prepared a BBQ for us to enjoy in our once-lovely little picnic area. 

August 31, 2012 at 8:55 pm 6 comments

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Welcome to my once-about-gardening-and-cooking blog that is now mostly about our life in Gloucester with a boy, a baby and 3 cats.

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When a home made cake + butter icing + sweets turns into the best birthday cake for my special 6 year old.  I'd accepted I was going to have to buy one as there was no time to fit in baking around L.  And then G accidentally took the car keys to work and our walk to collect them bought clarity - we went to the park, L napped and I baked.  I feel so pleased I've maintained my tradition of making E a cake afterall :0)
#nipitinthebudblog #gloucesterlife #birthdaycake #loveharibo And here he is, our lovely whopper!  Uncanny that I showed this picture to Euan yesterday of him aged 3 hrs old and this morning when he woke and asked if he was 6 yet it was the exact same time!!!! "But I don't feel like I'm 6 and 3 hours old Mummy". Such a wonderful life with this curious, funny, gentle, kind, Lego loving boy.  Happy Birthday beloved Euan x
#nipitinthebudblog #gloucesterlife #10lbbabyboy 6 years ago today I took my last waddle to the allotment to pick green veg for a vitamin packed last supper.  I knew baby was on his way but had a feeling he wasn't going to be quick about it.  It's his birthday in 2 days time and I'm so excited for him, my darling Whopper (he was 10lb 2oz and my bump in this picture is 48"!)
#nipitinthebudblog #gloucesterlife #ginormousbump  #10monthspregnant Amazing customer service from @tatterhood_ to help make sure her framed Mother poem arrived in time for my Mum's 70th birthday.  So many other wonderful poems available as postcards and her new book is also in stock on her website.  Go check her out, she's ace :0)
#motherhood #70thbirthdaygift Roadies.  When your Dad @musicalgeorgemoorey has a gig coming up and doesn't want to keep lugging his kit downstairs it becomes THE place in the room to sit!  #spacesgloucester #gloucesterlife So lush, they've made a den under the table and called for the iPad so they could watch their favourite Netflix episode inside.  #5minutespeaceandquiet
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