Sunday, May 07, 2017

The Scientific Approach

Alkaline ,OK then!
I'm trying to be more scientific and methodical on my plot. 
I know Dave was scientific and methodical ,innovative, and ordered, so the  legacy he bequeathed to me needs to be well used and stewarded. 
I have never been methodical and scientific before on other plots I have tended over my  years of horticulture. My new plot is such a fantastic inheritance that I'm trying my best to make sure I do everything well. Apart from the neatness that is. Bernard my allotment partner on the adjacent plot politely accepts that I hoe weeds but don't remove them , leave a trail of mud wherever I go and grow odd things that he considers weeds, like my patches of nettles for Peacock butterflies, and the wiggly edges of my side of the path. 
This growing season I have PLANNED. I have a notebook with my 3year rotation diagram, I sit in the greenhouse with a Cup of Ginger tea and write up my notes just before I go home . I am NO DIG CULTIVATOR. I am trying to garden by mulch and by not walking on the beds , efficiently laid out by Dave. 

It is the first year ever that I have had a designated Brassica Bed. 
I have some lovely plants which were sown in September and are now sturdy and ready for their very own bed. The label has washed off over winter, so they are either Purple Sprouting Broccoli or Calabrase. Now I enjoy my walk home with the chance to check out all the other plots and see how  others  have planted out their Brassica plants. I see that many have scattered a white powder around each plant, and I'm now checking that out. I seem to remember  Mr Wiles (of Lime Tree Avenue, Sutton)  our gardener  when I was a small child using Lime to improve the soil. I used to watch him all the time, poor man , and ask him questions. He used to tell me that one had to puddle in Cabbages so I do the same now correct or not stamping the plants firmly in. Just incase it was lime that I should put around my little plants I did a pH test. Here I am a reckless spender. I was carried away using the Marshall's catalogue buying seed potatoes that I spent £6 on a pH kit  . Yes it was fun to use, it brought me back to my A level Chemistry days in the lab, with the micro tubes when doing substance analysis.  It was only later that I also  remembered Litmus Paper, selling on Amazon for 99p for loads , which does just the same job.


  1. Ye Gods Margaret! Well at least you should get an A for effort.
    My own slap-happy haphazard style (if you can call it that) is the only one which could ever work for me. I really don't do 'organised'.
    To be honest, I don't really garden any more, just potter and supervise Nick who does all the work.

  2. I wonder if u still have your tree peony? Im not as organized as I Sound. Ive just inherited the plot of someone who was. No rain here for weeks.

    1. Likewise Margaret, we are desperate for rain but have the promise of some this weekend.
      Yes, the tree peony is currently displaying 12 large blooms. So beautiful but fragile and this weekend's weather will finish it off.
      Unfortunately I have forgotten how to load films from my camera onto my computer so cannot show up-to-date pictures.
      I'm afraid I don't get any brighter as I get older.

  3. So we just use our imaginations,which is very stimulating.