Welcome to our plot!

I'm Hazel, and in Nov 2006 my friend Jane and I took on a half plot at Hill Allotments, Sutton Coldfield - we want the satisfaction of growing and eating our own fruit and veg, and to improve our diet (and fitness!).

This is the story of what happened next...........

Friday, January 05, 2007

And now the Plan...

I sat down last night with a wallchart calendar (thank you, printing.com), Kitchen Garden magazine's 'when to sow' guide, 'guide to successional growing to avoid gluts and shortages' & a glass of wine in order to do some PLANNING.

I didn't get very far, though - talk about confusing! Who'd have thought that there would be so much choice of things to grow? Actually, the confusion is not is WHAT to grow (that's easy - a bit of everything!) but what varieties to grow. In the Dobies catalogue alone there are fifteen varieties of carrots!!

What didn't help was the fact that the Kitchen Garden magazine had a huge blooping great typo on the 'Jobs for the month of...' page - it was labelled up 'January', when it should have read 'February'. This dawned on me eventually when I kept reading 'this job might have to wait until March....'. A cock up of this magnitude can't really get past the proof readers, surely - but I checked the article on the web site, and it wasn't just me! This sort of thing does not do the amateur gardener much good - what if I'd put all my seeds in a month early?

I nearly got disheartened by this point, but filled the wine glass up instead and got sidetracked by entering into all the 'reader's giveaways', & spotted a bargain of 5 packs of prizewinning veg seeds for just £1.69 p&p - which looked too good to miss. I also went through all the seed packs I seem to have accumulated, & this means that our investment will be very small indeed - hurrah! This cheered me up no end.

Mind you, I was thinking of tomatoes/cucumbers/peppers as plants from the garden centre rather than messing about with seeds and seedtrays, but as I have seed packets of all three of these, and I am excessively tight about spending money, I might review this part of the Plan.

I considered this over a wine refill & thought further on the financial aspect of the allotment - I decided to make a note of all the money I spend on veg at the moment, in the hope this figure will reduce to zero by this time next year and we'll be self sufficient by then! I can also make a note of the amount SPENT on allotment items as it would be good to see the allotment pay for itself, as well as the veg being 'better' for having been home grown.

Reflecting this morning on the proposed analysis above, I suspect I've just won the prize for Allotment Nerd 2007, but part of me would find this very interesting, so I might do it anyway and not tell anyone!

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