Welcome to 2021. 365 days when you can grow your own vegetables knowing just how much or little insecticide has been applied, what feed has helped them to grow and just how good they taste when picked fresh from your plot. A year when you can enjoy some healthy exercise in very pleasant surroundings.
Our monthly column aims to help you enjoy your gardening while keeping costs down to a minimum. Eighty percent of our members do not have an allotment but still enjoy the benefits of our bulk buy prices and seed scheme. “THE HUT” will endeavour to supply you with quality products at the lowest prices.
THE VEG PLOT: - Continue with your winter digging incorporating well-rotted manure or composted garden waste. Apply bone-meal at 4oz sq. yd. Sow peas & broad bean's. Plant rhubarb, cover with strawy manure. Feed with sulphate of ammonia & cover crowns with boxes or buckets to encourage early growth. When it is too cold, wet or dark to go outside map out where you are intending to grow your vegetables this year trying to rotate the crops whenever possible to reduce the risk of disease. Check sowing dates on packets of seed and band together in months for easy reference. Harvest broccoli, sprouts, cabbage, swede, carrots, celery, leeks & parsnips. Empty compost bins and rebuild if necessary. Please help yourself to pallets near the Pond.
FRUIT: - Apply a Winter Tree Wash to fruit trees and bushes to control over-wintering insect pests. Order & plant trees & bushes with a dusting of bone meal. Feed trees grown in grass with nitrogen and potash. Prune soft fruit bushes removing up to a third of old blackcurrant stems to ground level. Other currents and gooseberries reduce side shoots to two buds and cut out dead, diseased and over- crowded branches.
GREENHOUSE: - Empty greenhouse & wash down with Jeyes. Line with 1.5m wide bubble plastic. Check for & spray white fly with a soap solution, an Insect Gun, Sprayday or Bio Ultimate Bug killer. Sow main crop onions, leeks, lettuce & sweet peas in pots. Sow Broad Beans in plugs, stand outside when 1” high. Plant some early potatoes in pots. Water plants sparingly. Make a final sowing of carrots in a large pot. Wash pots and trays on a warm day.
FLOWERS: - Tidy boarders & mulch. Ventilate chrysanthemum stools in cold frames. Plunge dahlia stools into dry peat and protect from frost.
LAWNS: - Aerate badly drained areas. Lay turfs 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.
All horticultural items are available to our members from a range of quality products provided to meet basic gardening needs. Membership is just £5 per annum. You can join by visiting ‘The Hut’, going on line to our web site or by e-mailing us.
PLOTS - We have a waiting list for Allotment Plots at the moment. So if you live in Capel & fancy a go at ‘Growing Your Own’ please contact Dennis on email@example.com. to get your name added to the list.
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.
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, Black Sunflower Seeds and 2 kg bags of Pea Nuts & Sunflower Hearts, plus larger bulk bags are available & fat balls & Meal Worms
WATER - The water will be turned off if the weather dictates & will go on again when the weather improves. We will endeavour to keep the toilet operational as this has its own water supply. If you need to water any crops there are several water butts adjacent to the various site storage huts.
THE HUT - We re-open on Saturday the 6th February 2021. Until then Members are welcome to follow the Online Sales format for all your gardening requirements - Fleece, Bubble plastic, in fact our full range of garden products and other sundry items such as :- Water softener salt, Block Salt, Wild Bird Seed, Pea Nuts & Lump Wood Charcoal (for the winter hardy cooks)………..
We feel that it is highly likely that we will be in ‘Lockdown’ on the 6th February so we will let you know if these plans have to change.
CULTIVATOR HIRE - A cultivator is available for hire for on site use only. The fee is £10 for the first 2 hours. To hire this equipment please give Dennis as much notice as possible or for any matters relating to the site please contact Dennis.
POLYTUNNEL - We are in the final throws of refurbishing and recovering the polytunnel. First constructed in 2004 the cover was expected to last for 5 to 10 years so it has done extremely well to last 16 years. The wooden frame for the doors also needed replacing and some of the ground cover and the bay dividers. Thanks to Dennis & his team of enthusiastic helpers for completing another major project during 2020.
SITE VISITS - If any groups would like to visit the site and the wild life area please email Philippa Brandon to discuss what is available to you, it’s totally free.
AND finally the committees of the Allotments Association and the Allotment’s Management Committee wish all of our members and readers a Happy & Healthy New Year.
STAY SAFE. SOCIAL DISTANCE, EAT FRESH HEALTHY FOOD. EXERCISE.