Start where you are…

This seems like as good a place as any to start my blog. I acquired my allotment in September 2017 and as with all new allotmenteers I had the best of intentions to keep an immaculate plot. I dreamed of a well organised space, free from weeds producing high yields of seasonal fruit and veg. For the first year, we made huge progress clearing the weeds and building beds. We managed to harvest more than enough vegetables for 2-3 families and hardly bought any vegetables over the summer months. Things were progressing well, we loved it, we were living the good life and then…..

We moved house in the early Spring of 2019. This put us on the back foot of the growing season and we have struggled to catch up ever since. Due to time constraints (as we were settling in from our move) we couldn’t give the plot the time it deserved and as a consequence we just seemed to spend all of our time fighting with weeds (see the above photo). It was exhausting, unproductive and soul destroying. In early September 2019, we received a warning letter from the local authority who are the leaseholder of our plot. The letter stated that there had been an inspection. Our plot had been assessed as untidy and if we did not make improvements in the next four weeks, we would be asked to vacate it. Alternatively it was also suggested that we could vacate it voluntarily as there was a “waiting list” of people who wanted a plot. This didn’t particularly concern me but that’s for another blog post.
I felt so upset. I loved my allotment and had truly missed being there regularly as I found it had such a positive benefit on my overall sense of wellbeing. On the other hand I was starting to doubt that I could give it the time that it needed. life can be busy for lots of different reasons. I work and have 2 young children, I think the house move had taken more time and energy than we initially thought it would. The letter gave me an opportunity to reflect. I decided that I wasn’t willing to let the plot go. Well, not without a fight at least.
I think what I am trying to say is that life happens. Whether it’s a house move, a redundancy, a new job role, bereavement etc and the best laid plans often go awry. However, that doesn’t mean that you give up. The letter gave us a push and made us realise how important our allotment is to us. We have been researching and reviewing how to best use our time at the plot to ensure high productivity and keep on top of the weeds. I hope to use the blog to share a little of what has gone before and to document what happens next.

All the best T x

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