Transition Horsham Community Allotment 2018

24th February 2018

Thanks to weeding, tidying up and pruning of fruit trees and bushes during 2017, the allotment is in a much better state compared to this time last year. Working parties have not yet commenced but some of us have been doing odd jobs in preparation for the upcoming growing season. A small path is under construction next to the greenhouse, where weeds were previously encroaching. The weeds have been remnoved and ground gleared in preparation to lay as path and a small adjacent area for a flower or herb border. A new raised bed has been constructed in front of the greenhouse, made out of wood from Valerie's demolished shed. The regular winter rains combined with six consecutive months of below average sunshine mean the pond is very full, and in the last week, some frog spawn has appeared. The frogs evidently haven't seen the weather forecast for the coldest week of winter weather in five years coming up, hope the eggs will survive the persistent freezing temperatures.

There is a smattering of produce on the plot. Perpetual spinach is dotted about, some of this is self seeded, and last year some has seeded next to one of the large raised beds. There was one burussel sprout plant and one kalette plant (kalette is a cross between kale and brussel sprouts, it produces flowery heads which look like blown brussel sprouts). Unfortunately there is no brocolli, as we didn't manage to harvest it quickly enough before it flowered. The leeks did ok and some are still standing near the greenhouse waiting to be harvested.

17th March 2018

A few days from the Spring equinox but Horsham is still in full winter conditions. 2018 so far is turning into another year with an extended winter. Not much that can be done with the weather so poor, and the ground so soggy, but some work has been done to build a small fence to train the grape vine which is located next to the greenhouse. Holes have been dug and fence posts sunk and supported, with the aim of attaching wire between the posts, which will be used to train the vine around one corner of the patio.

A few of us were at the Brighton Ecofair in the morning promoting the community allotment. We had a few interested people, which is great, and I am optimistic we can do a great job with the allotment this year with the aid of some extra pairs of hands.

The frogs have been very busy over the last month. At the end of February there were two clumps of frog spawn in the pond. Now the frog spawn is along one long side of the pond, next to the path. I wonder how much of it will survive, as both times that frogs have spawned, a freezing cold snap has followed.

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