I must admit, even for a man that has gardened for over three decades, I felt proud of my efforts on the allotment this year. For ground not gardened on for a few years and full of the dreaded horsetail, once I cropped its last big gift of grub, I felt a wee ‘well done’. So rewarding, both in the earth and on the dinner table. I will also sneak in, the small but important fact that it was all done organically!
Now though, as I mentioned in my last blog, I look too develop the site. Winter is the time you can move the pieces on the board when it comes to a garden, (or allotment or even community space). Although possibly not the most politically correct description but skip looter is about right at the moment, out and about looking for timber. It amazes me the waste that goes on around us. Surely one of the golden rules of being organic is we recycle and value our current assets. Well, their loss is my gain and shortly my allotment is going to benefit greatly from other people’s waste.
Winter crops will still be grown on my patch. London and my site is very mild and I think salad crops, lettuce, spinach and mizura will continually be produced. Fresh salad is a joy and for those people thinking of starting food growing, these crops very rarely let you down. I feel it’s important that a change in the season doesn’t mean we forget about gardening until the spring. As gardeners we are always busy.
On a sadder note my fruit trees, growing at the end of my allotment space have a really bad case of fire blight, especially the plums. I remember when fire blight was a notifiable disease in my younger years as a gardener. Now it’s so rampant it no longer warrants much of a conversation. It does, however infect anything in the Rosacea family (which is most of our fruit trees) and my instinct is to remove and burn. Sounds harsh but could ultimately be necessary and it keeps things organic.
As always and like any good gardener worth his salt, I’m thinking ahead and even after decades of doing it, both professionally and in private, the planting of spring bulbs and bedding is an eternal pleasure for me. Just that foresight, to know what an amazing display awaits you in the spring, to prep for it now and let your patients do the rest, is surely a microcosm of all that is horticulture.
Take a look back at the last editions
One man & his organic plot - Part One
One man & his organic plot - Part Two
One man & his organic plot - Part Three
One man & his organic plot - Part Four
One man & his organic plot - Part Five
One man & his organic plot - Part Six