Sunday, February 27, 2011


It was sunny this morning for the first time since July, so I went to the allotment to remove some of the weeds and leaves.

After about ten minutes, a member of the Committee, who I shall call Antonius, marched past. Antonius is a responsible and hard-working member of the Committee, but has a rather illiberal attitude to untidy plots.

He looked surprised to see me.

“Getting rid of the grass, are yer?” he demanded.

I thought about this for a moment.

“Yes, I suppose so.”

“You was gonna get a Notice,” he said, and walked off.

I was going to explain that I was not pulling up couch grass, but harvesting green manure, and the unraked leaves were a new-fangled organic weed-suppressant mulch. But he had gone away, to improve the pathways.

We are, in case you're concerned, unlikely to get a Notice. Before you get a Notice you need to have received a Letter, and we have not received a Letter.

It has started raining again.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Exciting news at Dan and Amy's allotment. We have sown our first seeds. I bought some compost from the Robert Dyas next to the Duke of York's Theatre, which is the UK's most expensive place to buy compost. The airing cupboard is now cooking with a mixture of tomatoes, chillies and aubergines.

In other developments, the BBC weatherman thinks it's nearly spring. "It hasn't been this temperature since late November!" he forecasted breathlessly.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Things we do with the things we grow

Once we have managed to grow crops, we inevitably eat them. Dan doesn't cook as much as I do so it's usually me who cooks our food. I have a sister Food blog and will endeavour to be good and update that more often.


I visited the allotment today, after meaning to do so yesterday. As you can see, it looks terrible.

I was pleased to learn that they haven't changed the locks in our absence, and nobody is squatting in our shed.

Here's the promised report:

Appearance: grassy. Similar to a tennis court with no net.
Crops: nothing worthwile. Some chard, left over from last year. All the rosemary you can eat. A few stray onions.
Weeds: many different species of grass. Do not mock - for everyone else's plot looks just as bad.
Pests: One of the chard leaves has been eaten by Derrick, an evil pigeon.
Slugs: 200 (estimate)

I celebrated by using my new saw to cut down a hawthorn bush. I seem to remember this was one of the things they said I could cut down.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


It rained all day, in that persistent way that make you wish you had scales and flippers, so I didn't go to the allotment. You'll have to wait until tomorrow for the disaster reportage I promised.

But you'll be pleased to hear that instead of getting muddy, Amy and I took a trip to Penge, where we bought a sharp and attractive saw. I'm going to use it to chop bits off the trees we're not allowed to cut down.

To keep you occupied until tomorrow, here's a picture of carrots.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Is it safe to leave the house?

I have decided to revive our allotment blog. Some recent events have made this essential:

1. My friend Jo told me to.

2. My friend Jo and I are writing an album of comic songs about vegetable cultivation, which means I suddenly have something to blog about when it's raining.

3. Our plot is slowly being taken over by trees. Trees we're not allowed to cut down. I am devising a scheme to persuade the One Tree Hill Allotment Society to give us a plot that is sunnier.

4. The Daily Mail has just launched an allotment blog, and I want to compete, because my readers are nicer.

Tomorrow I shall visit our allotment, and report back on the devastation.