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Newsletter - February 2020

29 January 2020

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Half plots are available NOW at £16 per annum plus membership. So if you live in or around Capel and fancy a go at ‘Growing Your Own’ Please contact Dennis at site.manager@capelallotments.co.uk.

‘SEED POTATOES’ at £1.50 for 1kg NOW IN STOCK

One enormous advantage of growing your own fruit & veg is that you harvest & eat it when it is in season, the time when it is at its very best. Cold frames & greenhouses help to stretch that season a little & protect some crops from freak weather conditions. We enjoy many different flowers in our gardens as the seasons change, snowdrops, crocus & daffodils as spring unfolds, bold splashes of colour in the summer months as annuals come into flower, followed by the autumnal reds & gold’s.

Our monthly column aims to help you enjoy your gardening while keeping costs down to a minimum.

Eighty per cent of our members do not have an allotment but still enjoy the benefits of our SEED SCHEMES and our bulk buy prices in “THE HUT”.

THE VEG PLOT: - If it is too cold or wet to dig or Rotovate spend a little time clearing your plot of spent crops, runner bean canes, perennial weeds so that the site is ready for you to cultivate as soon as the weather is favourable. If the sun is shining and the weeds are dry spray with Glyphosate (100ml £1) to start the weed killing process and reduce the chance of there being a fresh lush jungle to clear the next time you visit the plot. Continue winter digging incorporating recycled garden waste or Mushroom Compost at £30 a ‘Bucket’ load, 01473310380 to order. Sow peas & broad beans, apply bone-meal at 4oz sq. yd. (5kg £4.50). Plant rhubarb, cover this & established beds with strawy manure. Feed with sulphate of ammonia (5kg £3) or Blended Stable Manure (50ltr £4) & cover crowns with boxes, pots or tubs to encourage early growth. Sprout potato tubers (£1.50 for 1kg of Nadine or Lady Christl) in a frost free room or shed. If soil dries risk a sowing of carrots, spring onion, lettuce, beetroot, peas, turnips & parsnip or sow in cold frame or under cloches. Seed available @ £1 & £1.40 Plant onion sets & shallots . Scatter slug pellets (800g £2.50). Harvest broccoli, sprouts, cabbage, carrots, leeks, kale, cauliflowers, swedes & parsnips.

LAWNS: - Aerate badly drained areas & apply sharp sand (£2.50 a bag) Lay turves in favourable weather. Clean & overhaul equipment. Contact Steve Blake for repairs & service on 07813814623 . or TGC Garden Machinery Services Tattingstone  for repairs & service & new equipment at very competitive prices on01473 327737. CARE. STALE FUEL OVER 4 WEEKS OLD can damage carburettors and cause poor starting & engines to run rough. Use fuel additives to keep fuel fresh. Apply Lawn Sand or Sulphate of Iron (1kg £1.50) towards the end of the month to control moss.

FRUIT: - Apply grease bands (1.75m £5) or fruit tree grease @ £4.50 a 200g tub now. Order & plant trees & bushes with a dusting of bone meal.  Apply a Winter Tree Wash (500ml £9) to fruit trees and bushes to control over-wintering insect pests. Cover Strawberries with fleece from 30p mtr. Prune apples & pears. Cut autumn raspberries down to ground level. Spray peaches, nectarines & apricots against leaf curl.

GREENHOUSE: - Empty greenhouse & wash down with Jeyes (300ml £4.50). Line with 1.5m wide bubble plastic @ £2 a meter. Check for & spray white fly with Agralan whitefly killer 500ml £5.50. Sow main crop onions, leeks & sweet peas in pots. Check cuttings for mildew, remove affected leaves & spray. Begin sowing annuals & tomatoes. Water plants sparingly. Sow peas in a length of old guttering filled with compost and slide into shallow trench when plants are 1 ½” high. Sow broad beans in plugs and stand outside when 1½” high for a week or so and then plant out. Peas & Broad Beans just £1.40 a packet.Sow a few seeds in 10 plug strips of Spring Onions and Beetroot, do not thin out. Plant first sowings outside in March 10cm apart.  Sow a few seeds in 10 plug strips of Lettuce, thin to one plant. Plant outside in March 20cm apart or plant in a grow bag (40ltr bag £2.80) under glass.

FLOWERS: - Tidy boarders, feed with Growmore (5kg £4.50) or 6x cock’a’doodledo poo (20kg £11) & mulch with chipped bark (90ltr £6) or peat (100ltr £9). Ventilate chrysanthemum stools in cold frames. Start sowing annuals.


‘THE HUT’ - A limited number of FREE Copies of the ‘Allotment’ magazine are available 4 times a year at ‘The Hut’ starting in February. The Hut will be open from Saturday 1st February 10am to 12 noon with an extended range of products. Please note that you have to be an Allotment Association member to make purchases from “The Hut”.

SITE VISITS - If any groups would like to visit the site and the wild life area please contact Philippa Brandon to discuss what is available to you.

WILD LIFE AREA - At the time of writing the pond has a thin layer of ice covering it and the snowdrops are in flower.

FEED THE BIRDS - In addition to garden sundries we also supply a choice of feeds to encourage wild birds into your garden. We have 3 kilo bags of Wild Bird Seed at £1.50, Black Sunflower Seeds £3.50 and 2 kilo bags of Pea Nuts at £3.50. Also 12.5 kilo bags of Wild Bird Seed at £5, 12.75kg Black Sunflower Seeds £12 and 20 kilo bags of Pea Nuts at £34 & Fat Balls 20 for £1.50.

VEHICLES ON SITE - Plot holders please remember that at times during the winter months it is advisable not to take your vehicle on to the allotment site. Considerable damage can be caused to the tractor paths and grassed areas after long bouts of rain. The committee reserve the right to close the site to all vehicles in extreme conditions.

WATER - The water will be turned off if it gets really cold and will go on again when the weather improves. As a consequence the toilet may be out of action.

JOIN’N’SAVE - Membership is just £5 a year and is open to both plot holders and non-plot holders alike, where ever you live. A single visit to ‘THE HUT’ or purchases from our seed scheme should easily recoup this investment when you take advantage of our special bulk buy prices. Join on-line, at ‘The Hut’ or by email.

SPRING WORK IN - The first work-in of the year 19th April & the second on 11th October. If you cannot make either of this year’s Sunday work-ins, but can spare some time to help to keep the site tidy, then please contact Dennis.

CULTIVATOR HIRE - A new cultivator is available for hire for on-site use only. The fee is £10 for the first two hours. To hire this equipment please give advanced notice to Dennis or for any matters relating to the site please also contact Dennis.


A Church Tower or Spire, Colourful, Through a Window, Texture, A picture of your choice

All photographs to be colour, minimum size 150x100mm/6”x4” and maximum size 190x130mm/7.5”x5”.  Must be mounted and taken within the last 18 months